Deepest Mine in the World
Mining has been one of the most gruesome and dangerous types of work on earth. Mines back then were cultivated through sheer human strength and manpower. Today, there are heavy machineries and equipment that are made for the job in hand. Mines can be as wide or deep as can be depending on how they are made. They are generally accessed through shafts where lifts are sent down depending on how deep they are dug. There are mines stretching deep underground and some of them are nearing the center of the earth. The title of the deepest mine on the planet may vary since each mine has their specialty. There are ones specifically for gold, copper and so on. Then again the mine that would have to be the deepest as of today would be the TauTona Mine. This is the overall deepest mine in the world specializing in gold ores.
Location and Geology
The TauTona gold mine is located in South Africa. It is specifically located in Carltonville, Gauteng which is west of Johannesburg. Itis also located near two other mines namely the Mponeng and Savuka mines. The said has been recorded to be as deep as 3.9 km or 2.4 miles from the surface to the bottom. The upper and mid surfaces of it are built up on soft to mild ground textures. The lower and deep areas are more built on hard and rocky structures making it harder to dig.
The temperature ratings in the lower parts of the main are also high ranging from 55 degrees Celsius or 131 degrees Fahrenheit. These are dangerous temperatures to work for miners. In order to counter this, the company used several cooling machines to ease the temperature in the lower levels. They had to reduce the temperature to 28 degrees Celsius or 82 degrees Fahrenheit for a more suitable working environment.
The company in charge also used several shaft mechanisms that allow fast travel from one area level to another area level in the mine. The average speed in which the mechanism can travel can be as fast as 16 meters per seconds or 58 km/h.
History and Current State
The Anglo American Corporation started its ventures back in 1957. They named the mine TauTona which translates to Great Lion. It began its operations in 1962 back in the day where gold mining wasn’t as abundant in Africa as it is today. This could be due to the fact that gold was deemed as valuable back then and diamonds were the primary targets by miners. Since then several thousand who have been employed to work in the mine. The company had since change its name to AngloGold Ashanti and continued their operations even to this day. It also had its share of controversy such as several employees getting killed due to some accidents.
The mine continues to harvest large amounts of gold even to this day. It and a lot of its mechanisms and depth have been featured in one of National Geographic’s documentaries as the TauTona mine currently holds the title of being the deepest mine on the face of the planet.