Burkina Faso, a West African country near the Sahara, is considered one of the most underdeveloped countries by a lack of natural resources. However, gold production has increased by 32% in 2011 in six gold mines, making it the fourth largest gold producer in Africa after South Africa, Mali and Ghana. Hytera and Hytera partner in Burkina Faso --International Wireless Ameritel, have been directly involved in helping to solve some of the challenges faced by the Nantou zinc mine in Burkina Faso to Glencore International AG of Switzerland, owner of several mines worldwide.
Located in the north of Burkina Faso where the greatest threat to normalcy is safety, the largest challenge for Nantou zinc mine was the insecure social environment. Therefore, they needed an effective communication system they could rely on to protect the international travelers visiting or working on the mine sites. Besides, they also had geographical challenges. Burkina Faso borders in the north with the Sahara where is very dry and the mines are underground, so several geological studies were required as part of the process to ensure good communications.
In order to provide two-way radio coverage between the surface (approximately 15 Km radius) and underground mining facility, the Nantou zinc mine wanted to establish a 4-channel radio communication system so that their operators, engineers and mining experts could communicate with the various services on the ground.
The Nantou mine was built in a curved line, much like a ‘S’, and at each bend, an enclave was built using gigantic caverns. These bends created blind spots and, consequently, further difficulties related to the project. In order to avoid signal loss, Ameritel installed switches every 100 meters for signal regeneration, assuring uninterrupted communications between the site surface and all parts of the tunnel.
In phase one, Ameritel International Wireless recommended and installed a 4-channel Hytera DMR system, linking two RD98X repeaters from the surface via a wireless data system to six other RD98X repeaters inside the tunnel, which allowed them to obtain very clear seamless communications to 300 meters inside the tunnel.
Finally, 32 RD98X repeaters, 20 PD70X portable radios with DMR system were installed when the project was completed.
Nantou chose Hytera DMR system without any hesitation when they wanted to build a more secure and reliable communication network, because they understood that the products offered by Hytera guaranteed the smooth running of the event.
During the whole project, Hytera and its partner Ameritel International Wireless provided reliable and professional support to customer. Equipped with Hytera DMR system, Nantou could still use the existing analog equipments from other manufacturers, which they already owned.
Now workers in the tunnel, cranes, bulldozers, dumpers and in the fields feel more secure with the application of efficient Hytera system. It’s inspiring that all seven mines operating in Burkina Faso are now using Hytera and HYT radio equipments.
Voice from Customer
“This system is being used with twenty PD70X portable digital radios and the end users are very happy with the overall performance of the system. Further expansion of the system is planned in the future.”
—— Rob Smith Perkoa, Project Manager, Nantou Mining Burkina Faso SA