Productivity improvement in underground coal mines – a case study
Improvement of productivity has become an important goal for today’s coal industry in the race to increase price competitiveness. The challenge now lying ahead for the coal industry is to identify areas of waste, meet the market price and maintain a healthy profit. The only way to achieve this is to reduce production costs by improving productivity, efficiency and the effectiveness of the equipment. This paper aims to identify the various factors and problems affecting the productivity of underground coal mines adopting the bord and pillar method of mining and to propose suitable measures for improving them. The various key factors affecting productivity, namely the cycle of operations, manpower deployment, machine efficiency, material handling and management of manpower are discussed. In addition, the problem of side discharge loader (SDL) cable handling resulting in the wastage of precious manpower resources and SDL breakdown have also been identified and resolved in this paper.