As underground coal mines in Queensland become deeper and roadway lengths increase, it becomes increasingly difficult to maintain the temperature in working environments within acceptable limits. A mine ventilation network contains numerous heat sources which are superimposed onto the mine surface climate, resulting in the temperature measured at the face. Predictive models can be used to estimate the values of these heat sources, to calculate if or when refrigeration may be required. Grasstree Mine, located in Queensland’s Bowen Basin, uses predictive heat models developed by Moreby (2002, 2004, 2005) to estimate its refrigeration requirements, as part of its overall heat management strategy.
To ensure the accuracy of the heat models, the heat sources were quantified on site at Grasstree Mine. Comparing the actual results against those predicted allows for the predictive models to be adapted to the specific conditions found in the mine.