10 Dec 2020

Golden project gives tophat technology a lift

Supply of tophat profiles to a mine expansion project in Finland is expected to open up new opportunities in the global mining sector for British Steel’s Special Profiles business.

Located in the Lapland region of Northern Finland, Agnico Eagle Finland’s Kittila mine is the largest primary gold producer in Europe. A £160 million expansion is currently underway at the Kittila mine, with British Steel tophat shaft guides providing the ideal practical, safe and cost-effective solution to meet the needs of project designers WSP.

“Our tophat solutions have been predominantly used within the South African mining industry over the last decade, but this project has increased awareness of the massive benefits of our products outside of this region,” explained David Waine, Commercial Director, Special Profiles.

“As well as being 30% cheaper than the traditional hoisting system for underground mining, our system is easy to install, offers enhanced corrosion resistance, durability and outstanding strength.

“It’s been a privilege to work with WSP and Agnico Eagle to provide a solution for their development, and to start to challenge developers to consider tophat profiles as the product of choice for safe, cost-effective and practical mining innovation.”

British Steel’s tophat shaft guides offer many benefits including easy installation and reduced maintenance. Their properties, including close-dimensional control and straightness, mean less swing in the shaft and a smoother, faster lift. Tophat sections also generally last for the life of the mine. Mickael Hardy, Project Manager at WSP, said: “The use of tophat sections provides a good alternative for regular hollow sections with increased stiffness to reduce impact loads on horizontal steel sets. The top hat sections also help in connection and splice, especially when space is limited.”

Jack Dutil, Construction Manager Agnico Eagle Finland, added: “These type of shaft guides were new to us, as none of our mining sites have used them before. Agnico Eagle Finland is fully satisfied with the British Steel tophat shaft guides and will evaluate the usage of tophats in future shaft installations.”

See more information about these products at www.britishsteel.co.uk/what-we-do/special-profiles/mining/