Of politics and papers

The new easement covers the portion of the (green) conveyor route highlighted in light blue (click for larger image); the 2015 easement covers most of the balance. The blue line is the underground route where rail cars will transport rock from existing bins to a transfer station. (Image: Google Earth and Josh Willhite)

City of Lead approves conveyor easement

On May 2 the Lead City Commission unanimously approved the SD Science and Technology Authority (SDSTA) easement for the LBNF rock-placement conveyor system from the SURF site to the Open Cut. Over the past two months Mike Headley and Josh Willhite, representing SDSTA and the LBNF project, have appeared three times before the Lead City Commission, held one-on-one discussions with the city leaders and property owners concerns about noise and dust potential. At the May 2 meeting, Headley and Willhite were on hand to address remaining questions and to reinforce the SDSTA’a commitment to both environmental and regulatory controls. The easement along with an easement put in place back in 2015 between the SDSTA and Barrick Gold Corporation (Homestake) provide access to the land necessary to convey rock from the SDSTA’s property to the Open Cut for final placement.

— Elaine McCluskey, LBNF Project Manager

LBNF at World Tunnel Congress 2016

Schematic diagram illustrating stratigraphy of the Homestake area (USGS Bulletin 1857)
Schematic diagram illustrating stratigraphy of the Homestake area (USGS Bulletin 1857)

Members of the Arup/McMillen Jacobs Associates/SRK team that has been engaged to carry out geotechnical investigations at the Far Site and design work for both the excavation and facility support, presented a paper at The World Tunnel Congress 2016 on Geotechnical Investigations and Preliminary Design for the LBNF Far Site Conventional Facilities.

The paper, available only in the conference proceedings, describes the geological setting of the project, the geotechnical investigation undertaken, and the challenges associated with collection of reliable data in a high stress and geologically complex environment. It presents the layout for the facility and some of the constraints that will impact construction, including shaft access and working within an operating research facility.

Authors: Jon Hurt and Seth Pollak of Arup, Mark Havekost and James Schick of McMillen Jacobs Associates, and David Vardiman of SURF