Installation of a drainage system in an open pit mine.

The Challenge

BHP at Cerro Colorado Mine required to implement a dewatering system from the bottom of the mine.
For this type of applications, a meticulous engineering study was carried out, considering the terrain plus constructive and operational aspects.
In detail, some of these aspects are: the complexities of the terrain, the dimensions and distances of the trace, high fluid conduction pressures, extreme environmental temperatures, demands on mechanical resistance due to pipeline drag, possible material collapses, minimize connections, minimize assembly times and mine availability for operation.

Pexgol Solution

After consulting with the local team (Crosspipe Systems), the client decided to install 450 meters of Pexgol 200 mm class 21 pipe.
Crosspipe provided contributions in the calculation and design of the trace, using the engineering background provided by the client, as well as on-site consultancies.
In addition to the above, the advantageous characteristics presented by Pexgol pipes in this application were:
– Delivery of sections in long lengths.
– Coil supply format, simple uncoiling activity.
– Mechanical resistance to subcritical crack growth. Resists drag in mining terrain and landslides.
– Minimize connections (only 2 connections were made).
– Able to resist high internal fluid pressures. Maximum internal pressure to date is 52 bar.
– Resistance to extreme temperatures -50°C to 110°C.
– Internal roughness of 0.0006mm (60% less than conventional HDPE) contributes to energy savings due to lower pressure drops.
– Radius of curvature 5 times less than conventional HDPE, avoids the use of elbow connectors and accessories.
– Manufacturing and local technical support, with immediate response times.

Also, the installation was quick and without special equipment or tools.


BHP Pampa Norte – Cerro Colorado Mine
Chile | 2020

Working Conditions:

Extreme temperatures 10°C to 35°C / 50°F to 95°F

Pexgol Pipes

Pexgol 200 mm (8”), class 21




450 m


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