It’s very costly for mine operators to take equipment out of service. If the facility isn’t running at full capacity, revenue is reduced. So when upgrades are required, it’s crucial to reduce shutdowns and return the facility to full operating capacity as soon as possible. Mines are typically very dangerous environments, with a lot of massive equipment in operation, so the challenge is how to perform work quickly and safely.


In 2012, a copper and gold mine in Arizona needed a complete upgrade from the original wet dust collection system dating back to the 1960s to a modern, more efficient dry dust collection system and, of course, it needed to be done fast. Sundt used Building Information Modeling (BIM), coupled with detailed scheduling, to complete the project early, without sacrificing safety or quality.


We created a video using BIM to illustrate the work process down to the tiniest detail — even the size of the trucks was incorporated into the model to make sure we could navigate the tight spaces and perform specific tasks. This level of detail helped plan activities and schedule them down to the hour, rather than just the day, allowing us to note delays and make nearly instantaneous adjustments to the schedule, as opposed to waiting until a day or more had elapsed.


The detailed planning and scheduling brought tremendous benefits. The project had zero safety incidents and the crushers were back on line ahead of schedule.



Sierrita Fine Crusher Upgrades