Nxburst™ Large Rock Breaking and Removal
Jamie Creek Hydro Project – Located in Gold River, BC – Completed in September 2013
Scope of Project
• Construction of 2 concrete intake structures
• Drilling and grouting of rock dowels
• Drilling and blasting of rock
• Construction of powerhouse foundation and superstructure
• Design, supply and installation of 70ft steel portable bridge
• Supply and installation of Penstock – 2,156 m of total length
• Supply and installation of various sizes of HDPE pipe, Ductile pipe, Welded steel pipe
• Supply and installation 2 @ 60ft permanent bridges
• Construction of concrete foundations for switchyard
During excavation the crew on site discovered a massive boulder, approximately 40 cubic meters in size. The boulder was in the trench line of pipe alignment which needed to be removed. The position of the boulder was located in the vicinity of equipment and materials that could be damaged in a blast using high explosives. Due to the remote location of the job site, the contractor did not have access to an experienced high explosive blaster and driller. The project was at risk of being delayed for a week while the proper blasting resources could be sourced and delivered to the site. Thankfully the contractor planned ahead by having employees onsite that had both their blasting and Nxburst™ certification. Operations were only delayed by a few hours as the rock could quickly be removed with Nxburst™ cartridges, without additional resources having to be acquired.
Which GeoBreak Products Were Recommended
The products recommended for use were two 25034 and four 18034 Nxburst™ cartridges.
Breaking the boulder into manageable sized pieces that are easy to excavate with a machine. The Nxburst™ cartridges should produce limited fly rock during detonation and provide low vibrations that do not damage equipment or disrupt the geology of the job site.
The result was as expected, the boulder broke into manageable sized pieces that were excavated with a machine while producing low vibrations and limited fly rock. Nxburst™ ensured that the onsite equipment was not damaged during the blast, due to its low deflagration process.
Final Thoughts From The Project Contractors
Nxburst™ provided a quick solution to an unforeseen problem, a week long project delay would have resulted in both time and money lost. Additional costs would have accumulated from rented equipment not being used as well as crew members and subcontractors having to be sent home. The project would have been put on hold until a blaster would be able to come in and remove the boulder.
Removing the rock took less than half a day using only a few onsite labourers to drill and blast. The total amount for removing the boulder was less than $500 and they were able to resume operations on the same day.
Planning ahead with an employee who had Nxburst™ certification and training turned a big problem into a manageable operational delay.