The process of extraction of ores from below the surface of the earth by creating a system of tunnels is called underground mining. Ores are deposited at a considerable distance below the surface of the earth. The tunnels used in underground mining are necessary for moving machinery and need to go deep into the mineral seam. Thus, these tunnels are very long and may be in excess of hundreds of meters. Mining of coal is mainly done by underground mining. Roughly 60 percent of global coal mined is done by underground mining. In underground mining, the two methods used are bord-and-pillar method and longwall method. Underground mining has to be done with safety in mind and the process must be economical. Underground mining is done if the ore body is deposited too deep under the surface of the earth to use open pit mining profitably and if the grades or quality of the orebody are high enough to cover the costs. Underground mining has a lower environmental footprint than open pit mining.
COVID-19 scenario analysis:
- COVID-19 pandemic has shut-down production of various products in the global auger drilling industry, mainly owing to prolonged lockdown in major global countries. This has hampered growth of the global auger drilling market significantly from past few months, as is likely to continue during 2020.
- COVID-19 has already affected sales of equipment and machinery in the first quarter of 2020, and is likely to cause a negative impact on the market growth throughout the year.
- The major demand for equipment and machinery was previously noticed from giant manufacturing countries including the U.S., Germany, Italy, the UK, and China, which is badly affected by the spread of coronavirus, thereby halting demand for equipment and machinery.
- Further, potential impact of the lockdown is currently vague and financial recovery of companies is totally based on its cash reserves. Equipment and machinery companies can afford a full lockdown only for a few months, after which the players would have to modify their investment plans.
- Equipment and machinery manufacturers must focus on protecting their workforce, operations, and supply chains to respond toward immediate crises and find new ways of working after COVID-19 infection cases start to decrease.
Top impacting factors: Market Scenario Analysis, Trends, Drivers, Opportunities, Restraints and Impact Analysis
The increasing global population, industrialization, urbanization are expected to drive the demand for underground mining products globally. The availability of valuable metals and minerals in various places around the world is another factor. Underground mining is used for mining of many valuable products such as coal, salt, metals such as iron, copper, zinc, nickel, tin, lead, gold, and silver, gems such as diamonds and rubies among other products. However, geopolitical and economic uncertainty is a major restraining factor for the global mining industry and by extension the global underground mining machines market as disruptions in trade cause fluctuations in demand and prices. Underground mining is costlier than open pit mining and is implemented only if the ore body is too deep to mine profitably by open pit or if the grades or quality of the orebody are high enough to cover the costs. The opportunities for growth of the global underground mining market comes from the increasing research and development to bring new innovative technology to improve processes, reduce cost and promote safety, accuracy and efficiency of operations. 3D printing technology is anticipated to provide massive opportunities for growth of the global underground mining market.
The global underground mining market trends are as follows:
Increase in demand for underground mining products around the world:
With growing population, rising urbanization and industrialization the global underground mining industry is expected to continue to grow as the demand for various metals and minerals increases. The sufficient supply of minerals and raw materials is essential to the sustainability and growth of the global economy. Almost every industry depends on underground mining products, such as coal among others. Underground mining is used to excavate precious metals, which are found in hard rock deposits for example ore containing gold, silver, iron, copper, zinc, nickel, tin, and lead. Underground mining is used to excavate ores of precious gems such as diamonds or rubies. Softer minerals such as salt, coal, among others are also mined by using underground mining. With the increasing demand of mining products due to the growing global demand caused by factors such as increase in global population, the growth of urbanization and rising disposable income levels worldwide, the global underground mining market is expected to grow in the future. Coal which is an important product of underground mining is facing increased demand globally from the energy sector with rising population, industrialization and urbanization. Similarly growing demand of metal in global manufacturing, automotive, construction industries among others is also expected to drive the market.
Innovations and use of technological advancements in mining equipment and processes
Automated equipment is constantly being developed to increase economy, efficiency, safety of operations. Certain mining operations such as hauling and crushing are being automated fully. Artificial intelligence and machine learning are being adopted to and improve processes, the efficiency and economy of operations and also to reduce human error. Constant innovations are being introduced to improve the drilling equipment used in underground mining to provide better energy efficiency and increased durability. A major area of innovation and technological advancement in underground mining is the development of blast automation. WebGen is the world’s first truly wireless initiating system that was developed in 2019 by Orica, an Australian provider of commercial explosives and blast systems, in collaboration with Epiroc, a Swedish mining equipment manufacturer. Drones are increasingly being adopted by for efficient maintenance, monitoring, and mapping of site projects. 3D printing and mapping technology are also being adopted in the underground mining market. Mining activities require large and specialized equipment that are susceptible to breakdown. To counteract this, companies are increasingly adopting 3D printing as a solution to reduce downtime. 3D printing also helps to reduce inventory costs as replacement parts can be printed as per requirement. 3D mapping is capable of offering survey data with high degree of detail and accuracy as the process uses drones and laser scanners. Volvo Construction since 2018 is a frontrunner in the adoption of 3D printing for mining machinery and equipment.
Key benefits of the report:
- This study presents the analytical depiction of the global underground mining industry along with the current trends and future estimations to determine the imminent investment pockets.
- The report presents information related to key drivers, restraints, and opportunities along with detailed analysis of the global underground mining market share.
- The current market is quantitatively analyzed to highlight the global underground mining market growth scenario.
- Porter’s five forces analysis illustrates the potency of buyers & suppliers in the market.
- The report provides a detailed global underground mining market analysis based on competitive intensity and how the competition will take shape in coming years.
Underground Mining Market Report Highlights
By Mining Method
Key Market Players
Amur Minerals Corporation, BHP, China Shenhua Energy Company Limited, Thyssen Mining, GBF Underground Mining Company, CIMIC Group Limited, Norilsk Nickel Group, Barminco, Vale S.A., Coal India Ltd