First pre-trial site visits taken place
In week 40 the design team of the project visited two of the four locations where the ¡VAMOS! system is foreseen to be tested. During the visit the current design was explained to the mine site owners, and the first preparations were made in order to set up a field test plan. Possible issues related to infrastructure, climate, social acceptance, safety and environment were discussed. The geologists and soil experts in the team carried out some preliminary sampling and extensively debated the geological, geotechnical, hydrological and hydrogeological aspects of these test locations. A comprehensive questionnaire was tabled, which will be filled in further over the coming months in order to get a complete picture of the circumstances in which the equipment needs to operate, with minimal environmental impact.
In the near future detailed bathymetric maps will be made of these flooded pits. Amongst many other investigations that should allow for a complete test plan, an investigation is foreseen to be executed on the mining activities which took place under and around the mine pits in the past. The preliminary conclusion of the visit was that the proposed launch, mining and recovery methods are suitable.