Design and Construction of a Unique Shaft Bottom Structural System for a Potash Mine


Timo Tikka, Stantec; Jacques Ouellet, BHP; Eric Nolasco, Stantec

Shaft bottom structural systems are used in underground mining to support transfer of personnel, equipment and ore to and from underground to the surface.  This paper first summarizes the evolution of design philosophy from a concrete tower supported on a concrete plug to the current structural steel design arrangement with unlined shaft walls, clear shaft bottom area with only a concrete housekeeping pad.   Then the paper reviews the design parameters, analysis and design, and construction methodology for this rather unique shaft bottom structural system consisting of three sets of hitch beams, with each having specific functional requirements.
Keywords: shaft, shaft wall, conveyance, skip, cage, arrestors, crash beams, shaft steelwork