WO2005093215A1 - Collecting and lifting methods of manganese nodule and mining device - Google Patents

Collecting and lifting methods of manganese nodule and mining device Download PDF

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Publication number
WO2005093215A1
WO2005093215A1 PCT/KR2005/000152 KR2005000152W WO2005093215A1 WO 2005093215 A1 WO2005093215 A1 WO 2005093215A1 KR 2005000152 W KR2005000152 W KR 2005000152W WO 2005093215 A1 WO2005093215 A1 WO 2005093215A1
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WO
WIPO (PCT)
Prior art keywords
mining
manganese nodules
collector
surface ship
device
Prior art date
Application number
PCT/KR2005/000152
Other languages
French (fr)
Inventor
Gil Su Yoon
Jae Hyung Park
Seok Hwan Lee
Ji Hong Park
Ye Na Jeong
Original Assignee
Pukyong National University Industry-University Cooperation Foundation
Priority date (The priority date is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date
Priority to KR1020040003549A priority Critical patent/KR20040028828A/en
Priority to KR10-2004-0003549 priority
Application filed by Pukyong National University Industry-University Cooperation Foundation filed Critical Pukyong National University Industry-University Cooperation Foundation
Publication of WO2005093215A1 publication Critical patent/WO2005093215A1/en

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Classifications

    • EFIXED CONSTRUCTIONS
    • E21EARTH DRILLING; MINING
    • E21CMINING OR QUARRYING
    • E21C50/00Obtaining minerals from underwater, not otherwise provided for

Abstract

Disclosed herein are a mining device for mining manganese nodules, which comprises a mining surface ship, a collector, and a recovery device, and a collecting and lifting method using the device. Without having a rising pipe between a collector which mines manganese nodules scattered around sea bottom and a mining surface ship, manganese nodules are carried a net-type or a box-type recovery device. In the mining device, the collector is operated by a control cable form the mining surface ship or by the remote control of an ultrasonic transceiver. Manganese nodules are discharged by a collector to a recovery device or sucked by a suction pipe, which is installed at a recovery device and attaches a small ROV (Remote Operating Vehicle) at the end. After stacking manganese nodules, the recovery device is lifted to the mining surface ship by a lifting cable or a buoyancy controlling device. It would be a collecting and lifting method and a mining device which carries manganese nodules efficiently when developing mineral resources like manganese nodules in the deep-sea bottom.

Description

COLLECTING AND LIFTING METHODS OF MANGANESE NODULE AND MINING DEVICE

Technical Field The present invention relates to a method of collecting and lifting manganese nodules and a mining device, which are used for mining manganese nodules in the deep-sea bottom. More specifically, the invention relates to such a method of collecting and lifting manganese nodule and a mining device, in which a special recovery device is provided between a mining surface ship and a collector in order to carry efficiently to the mining surface ship the manganese nodules, which are collected uniformly by the collector.

Background Art A manganese nodule consists of Copper, cobalt, nickel, manganese, and the like, in which manganese is the main element. It is called "nodule" since the shape of the material is a lump. It has a diameter of 40-60 mm and is usually constructed in a concentric structure centering around a core such as a tooth of a shark, a fragment of a manganese nodule, or a stone, Manganese nodules possess great industrial value, so that researches on mining in the deep-sea bottom has been performed by OMI (Ocean Management Incorporated), etc., from the end of the 1970's. Several methods have been proposed for mining systems. The Hydraulic Rising System, which succeeded in a mining experiment of manganese nodules by OMI and is a system operated by various pumping devices, comprises a mining surface ship and freighter 100 used as a mining base and carrying special devices, a collector 130 collecting manganese nodules in the deep-sea bottom, a flexible hose 120 connected to the collector 130, and a rising pipe and a rising pumping system 110 connected to the flexible hose 120 and carrying manganese nodules tu the mining surface ship 100, as depicted in FIG. 1. which is a side elevation view of a conventional rising method using a rising pipe. A carrying device using a rising pipe is convenient, but a mining surface ship and a collector have to do a 1 : 1 work and it takes a considerable time to repair if a rising pipe is damaged, causing much difficulties in operation and high production costs. In order to solve the problems, various improved methods of collecting and lifting manganese nodules have been attempted, eliminating a rising pipe and using a modular system in stead, Even though Korean Patent Application 2002-19834 entitled "Untethered continuous deep sea mining" is to complement defects of a rising pipe and a rising pumping system, it is controlled totally unmanned and uses a method of gas filling and floating many especially fabricated cassettes, thereby raising initial investment costs and being useful only for the mass production.

Disclosure of Invention The present invention has been made in order to solve the above problems occurring in the art, and it is an object of the invention to provide a method of collecting and lifting manganese nodules and a mining device, in which, when mining manganese nodules, a massive amount of mined manganese nodules are conveniently carried at a time even witliout having a rising pipe between a mining surface ship and a collector, and a mining surface ship floating on the sea and the collector on the sea bottom can work independently moving relatively wide range freely, compared with a case of having a rising pipe. In order to accomplish the above object, according to one aspect of the present invention, there is provided a metliod of collecting marine mineral resources like manganese nodules, the method comprising steps of: a) installing a collector and recovery device at the sea bottom from a mining surface ship; b) mining manganese nodules scattered around the sea bottom using the collector under the control of the mining surface ship, a control cable of which is connected to the collector; c) stacking the manganese nodules mined by the collector on recovery device; and d) lifting the recovery devices to the mining surface ship when the recovery devices are stacked with sufficient manganese nodules for lifting. According to another aspect of the invention, there is provided a mining device for mining marine mineral resources like manganese nodule. The mining device of the invention comprises: a) a mining surface ship floating on the sea; b) a collector having a discharging device for firing the mined manganese nodules and adapted to mine manganese nodules scattered on the deep-sea bottom under the control of the mining surface ship and; and c) a recovery device for receiving the discharged manganese nodules, collecting them uniformly, and lifting the collected manganese nodules to the mining surface ship. According to a further aspect of the invention, there is provided a mining device for mining marine mineral resources like manganese nodule. The mining device of the invention comprises: a) a mining surface ship floating on the sea; b) a collector for mining manganese nodules scattered on the deep-sea bottom under the control of the mining surface ship: and c) a recovery device including a suction pipe having a small ROV (Remote Operating Vehicle) attached at the end thereof in order to suck manganese nodules collected by the collector, and adapted to collect manganese nodules uniformly through the suction pipe, and then lift the collected manganese nodules to the mining surface ship, According to the invention, a mining surface ship, a collector, and a recovery device can work independently, so that a method of collecting and lifting manganese nodule and a mining device are efficient for rough marine work, easy to maintain, and effective to collect and lift manganese nodules. In addition, according to the invention, a metliod of collecting and lifting manganese nodules and a mining device adopt a method of lifting manganese nodules on a massive scale after a remotely controlled collector collects manganese nodules to separated recovery devices, so that a mining surface ship floating on the sea and a collector on the sea bottom can work independently moving relatively wide range freely, compared with a case of having a rising pipe, therefore the invention has effects of being economical and convenient by improving mobility to a mining area and efficiency of the process of collecting manganese nodules,

Brief Description of Drawings Further objects and advantages of the invention can be more fully understood from the following detailed description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, in which: FIG. 1 is a side elevation view of a conventioηaj rising method using a rising pipe; FIG. 2 is a side elevation view of a mining device with a net-type recovery device according to an embodiment of the invention; FIG. 3 is another side elevation view of a mining device with a net-type recovery device according to the invention; FIG. 4 is a side elevation view of lifting a net -type recovery device according to the invention; FIG. 5 is an enlarged view showing a major portion of FIG, 3; FIG. 6 is a side elevation view of discharging manganese nodules from a discharging device to a box-type recovery device according to another embodiment of the invention; FIG, 7 is an enlarged view showing the collector in FIG, 6; FIG. 8 is a side elevation viewr of sucking manganese nodules using a suction pipe of the recovery device in FIG. 6; and FIG. 9 is a side elevation view of lifting a box-type recovery device from a mining surface ship,

Best Mode for Carrying Out the Invention The preferred embodiments of the present invention will be hereafter described in detail with reference to the accompanying drawings. FIG. 1 is a side elevation view of a conventional lifting method using a rising pipe; FIG. 2 is a side elevation view of a mining device with a net-type recovery device according to an embodiment of the invention; FIG. 3 is another side elevation view of a mining device with a net-type recovery device according to the invention; FIG. 4 is a side elevation view of lifting a net-type recovery device according to the invention; FIG. 5 is an enlarged view showing a major portion of FIG. 3; FIG. 6 is a side elevation view of discharging manganese nodules from a discharging device to a box-type recovery device according to another embodiment of the invention; FIG, 7 is an enlarged view showing the collector in FIG. 6; FIG, 8 is a side elevation view of sucking manganese nodules using a suction pipe of the recovery device in FIG, 6: and FIG. 9 is a side elevation view of lifting a box-type recovery device to a mining surface ship. As shown in the above figures., according to the invention, a mining device for collecting manganese nodules, comprises a mining surface ship 10 floating on the sea which adjusts and controls a collector 20 and a recovery device 50, 60, a collector 20 which mines manganese nodules m on the deep-sea bottom-, and a recovery device 50, 60 winch collects manganese nodules m mined and uniformly collected by the collector 20 and lifts to the mining surface ship 10 on a large scale at a time. Pingers are allocated at the manganese nodule m collecting sea area, therefore absolute and relative locations of a recovery device 50, 60 and a collector 20 can be identified on the mining surface ship, Control between the mining surface ship 10 and the collector 20 is possibly done by a cable using a control cable 18 as shown in FIG. 2 or by radio using an ultrasonic transceiver 16 as shown in FIG. 3. The collector 20 mines manganese nodules m and gathers them at a predetermined area, with stored topographical information, and installed with a remotely controlled camera 22 wliich can be conn-oiled freely, pan and tilt. In addition, the collector 20 may have a discharging device 30 which sends mined manganese nodules m to the recovery device 50, 60. The collector 20 equipped with the discharging device 30 attaches a bucket 24 at the front side for collecting mined manganese nodules, and a pipe which sucks manganese nodules m is connected to the collector 20 from the underneath of the bucket 24, The sucked manganese nodules pass through a pump 34 and are discharged by a discharging device 30 to a recovery device 50, 60. The symbol 36 not explained is a lever which supports and controls the bucket 24. The discharging device 30, attaching a remotely controlled camera 22 at the end, is controlled remotely the length and the angle. At the front and rear end of the collector also attaches remotely controlled cameras 22. The collector 20 is controlled by the signal from a control cable 18 or an ultrasonic transceiver 16. The recovery device 50. 60 may have any shape to contain manganese nodules m. constructing a net-type which enables easy flow of water or a box-type with a bottom formed with holes that let water flow freely. The net-type recovery device 50, as depicted in FIG. 5, has a frame 56 like a soccer goal frame and the entrance is open to gather discharged manganese nodules m in the net 52. At the top of the frame 56, a remotely controlled camera 22 is attached tυ for monitoring the status of the collector 20 and sending to the mining surface ship 10. A lifting rope 42 is connected to the both sides of the frame 56, and buoys are attached to the lifting rope 42. Wheels capable of moving back and forth are attached to the bottom of the net-type recovery device 50, Since wheels 54 are attached, the distance to a collector 20 can be adjusted minutely, and the wheels also play the role of a weigh: and can be controlled remotely. When the net-type recovery device 50 is filled with mined manganese nodules m„ as shown in FIG, 4, the mining surface ship 10 lifts the recovery deyice 50 by pulling the lifting rope 42 connected to the net-type recovery device 50, using the winch 14 by way of the frame trolley 12 which is installed at the stem of the mining surface ship 10, A box-type recovery device 60, another embodiment of a recovery device 50, 60 as shown in FIG. 6, 8, and 9, comprises a body 62 which has internal space to put in the mined manganese nodules m and a lid 64 to cover the body 62. The bottom of the body 62 forms holes (not configured) which enable the flow of water, and an under support frame 66 is formed for landing the box-type recovery device 60 properly onto the sea bottom, The lid 64 is equipped with a remotely controlled camera 22 for monitoring the collector 20 and has an ultrasonic transceiver 68. The box-type recovery device 60 stacks the manganese nodules m discharged by the discharging device 30 of the collector 20, and, when the recovery device is full, the lid 64 is put on and the recovery device is lifted using the lifting rope 42 to the mining stirface ship 10 like the net-type recovery device, or a buoyancy controlling device 70 such as a hydrogen generating device or an air tanlc filled with compressed ah* is installed, and the recovery device may float to the surface of the sea by tire operation of the buoyancy controlling device 70 and is lifted to the mining surface ship 10. That is, when the box-type recovery device 60 is filled with manganese nodules m, the lid 64 is put on, ε d the compressed air filled in the tanlc is released or the hydrogen generating device starts operation, floating the recovery device, then the recovery device is lifted to the mining surface ship 10. The buoyancy controlling device 70 is operated by the signal from the ultrasonic transceiver 68 installed on the lid. Furthermore, the box-type recovery device 60, differently from the net-type recovery device 50, as depicted in FIG. 8, may install a suction pipe 74 which attaches a remotely controllable small ROV (remote Operating Vehicle: 72) at the end of the pipe to suck manganese nodules, and, using the suction pipe 74, can suck and stack manganese nodules m, which are collected uniformly by the collector 20, into the box-type recovery device 60, even though the collector 20 does not have a discharging device 30. The small ROV 72 can move back and forth, left and right, and up and down, and has a pump, so that it may suck the manganese nodules, which are mined by the collector 20, with water and stack the manganese nodules m in the box-type recovery device 60 through the suction pipe 74. The method of collecting and lifting manganese nodule and the mining device described above, in accordance with the invention, are explained in detail hereafter, Of the methods of mining marine mineral resources like manganese nodules, which comprise a mining surface ship 10, a collector 20, and recovery device 50, 60, a method of collecting and lifting manganese nodules which stacks a predetermined amount of manganese nodules m mined by tlie collector 20 and carries to the mining surface ship 10, witliout having a rising pipe between a mining surface ship 10 and a collector 20, is as follows. (1) A mining surface ship 10 installs a recovery device 50, 60 at the sea bottom using a lifting rope 42 to which buoys 44 are attached. (2) A control cable 18 is connected from the mining surface ship 10 to the collector 20. The collector 20 mines manganese nodules m scattered around the sea bottom and collects them in the bucket 24 by remote control from the mining surface ship 10 through the control cable 18. In this process, the collector 20 can be controlled without the control cable 18 by furnishing the mining surface ship 10 and the collector 20 with ultrasonic transceivers 38. (3) The manganese nodules m collected at the bucket 24 are discharged from the collector 20 to the recovery device 50, 60 by the discharging device 30. Like this, manganese nodules can be collected at the recovery device 50, 60 using the discharging device 30, or manganese nodules m can be collected using the suction pipe 74 when a suction pipe 74 is installed at the recovery device 50, 60. (4) The collector 20 stacks manganese nodules m in the recovery device 50, 60 by doing the step (2) and (3) repeatedly. (5) The mining surface ship 10 monitors the whole processes of the collector 20 using a remotely controlled camera 22 which is attached to the top of the entrance of the recovery device 50, 60, (6) If the recovery device 50, 60 is filled with manganese nodules m, the recovery device is lifted to the mining surface ship 10 using the lifting cable 42. At this time, a winch ] 4 is used by way of the frame trolley 12 which is installed at the stern of the mining surface ship 10. Here, a box-type recovery device 60 can be lifted by operating a hydrogen generating device or a compressed air tanlc and floating the box-type recoveiy device 60 to the surface of the sea instead of being lifted to the mining surface ship 10 by the lifting cable 42. (7) After carrying the lifted manganese nodules m to the mining surface ship 10, the recovery device 50, 60 is sent down to the sea bottom again and carries manganese nodules m, (8) When mining of manganese nodules m is finished at the current mining area, all the collector 20 and the recovery device 50, 60 are floated and moved to the other site, and continue operation, Industrial Applicability As described above, according to the invention, a mining surface ship, a collector, and a recovery device can work independently, so that a method of collecting and lifting manganese nodules and a mining device are efficient for rough marine work, easy to maintain, and effective to collect and lift manganese nodules. In addition, according to the invention, a method of collecting and lifting manganese nodules and a mining device adopt a metliod of lifting manganese nodules on a massive scale after a remotely controlled collector collects manganese nodules to separated recovery devices, so that a mining surface ship floating on the sea and a collector on the sea bottom can work independently moving relatively wide range freely, compared with a case of having a rising pipe, therefore the invention has effects of being economical and convenient by improving mobility to a mining area and efficiency of the process of collecting manganese nodules. While the present invention has been described with reference to the particular illustrative embodiments, it is not to be restricted by the embodiments but only by the appended claims. It is to be appreciated that those skilled in the art can change or modify the embodiments without departing from the scope and spirit of the present invention.

Claims

1. A method of collecting marine mineral resources like manganese nodules, the method comprising steps of: a) installing a collector and a recovery device at the s a bottom from a mining surface ship; b) niining manganese nodules scattered around the sea bottom using the collector under the control of the mining surface ship, a control cable of which is connected to tine collector; c) stacking the manganese nodules mined by the collector on recovery devices; and d) lifting the recovery devices to the mining surface ship when the recovery devices are stacked with sufficient manganese nodules for lifting.
2, A mining device for mining marine mineral resources like manganese nodule, the mining device comprising: a) a mining surface ship floating on the sea; b) a collector having a discharging device for firing the mined manganese nodules and adapted to mine manganese nodules scattered on the deep-sea bottom under the control of the mining surface ship and; and c) a recovery device for receiving the discharged manganese nodules, collecting them uniformly, and lifting the collected manganese nodules to the mining surface ship.
3, A mining device for mining marine mineral resources like manganese nodule, the mining device comprising: a) a mining surface ship floating on the sea; b) a collector for mining manganese nodides scattered on the deep-sea bottom under the control of the mining surface ship; and Operating Vehicle) attached at the end thereof in order to suck manganese nodules collected by the collector, and adapted to collect manganese nodules uniformly through the suction pipe, and then lift the collected manganese nodules to the mining surface ship.
4. The mining device according to claim 2 or 3, wherein the mining surface ship and the collector are controlled through a wired or wireless mode.
5. The mining device according to claim 2 or 3, wherein the recovery device is ormed of a net which allows water to pass freely.
6, The mining device according to claim 2 or 3, wherein the recovery device includes a body having an internal space formed therein for receiving the mined manganese nodules, and a lid for covering the body, the body having holes formed at the bottom thereof for enabling the flow of water,
PCT/KR2005/000152 2004-01-17 2005-01-15 Collecting and lifting methods of manganese nodule and mining device WO2005093215A1 (en)

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KR1020040003549A KR20040028828A (en) 2004-01-17 2004-01-17 Collecting and lifting methods and recovery facilities for Maganese nodule
KR10-2004-0003549 2004-01-17

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KR100675601B1 (en) 2007-01-30
KR20050075727A (en) 2005-07-21

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