MineSight says it is bringing precision and dependability to one of mining’s most challenging steps with a new drill and blast management utility. “MineSight Blast will revolutionise the design and execution of drill and blast plans from within MineSight 3D. Within a single interface, you will be able to design drill patterns, apply blasting parameters to holes and do the tie-in of a shot.”“MineSight Blast will redefine blasting,” said Mark Gabbitus, MineSight Product Manager-Operations. “A bad blast can undo all of the good work done by geologists and engineers to develop a robust block model and mine plan. “So it is vitally important that the blast design and execution minimises error and interprets the effects when things do not go to plan.” Incorporating a modern design interface, MineSight Blast will design and manage drill and blast patterns interactively on screen while storing all of the design (and actual) information in a SQL database.Direct links to drill fleet management and explosive vendor systems will enable easy automation of data transfer between the design tool and the operators. Users can see what’s happening in the pit in near real time and make intelligent business decisions. MineSight Blast will link directly to MineSight Atlas so mine planners can update their schedule based on actual drillholes and lengths to get more accurate times.Several factors affect the quality of a blast. The geology and geotechnical characteristics of the rock are unchangeable, but the blast pattern parameters, such as hole spacing, depth, diameter and amount/type of explosive used, can be modified. The ability to change these parameters dynamically in response to as-drilled information is critical to achieving good fragmentation. Future releases of MineSight Blast will include blast simulation, analysis and optimization to reduce the workload on drill and blast engineers and enable them to change or optimise blasting parameters at critical stages.Starting later in 2014, MineSight Blast will be released in a phased approach with Version 1 set to include enhanced drill pattern design features, such as offset rows, volume of influence solids and naming rules. Versions 2 and 3 will see the addition of blast design tools, pattern tie-in options (manual and automatic) along with simulation and optimisation options.