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Publication numberUS3905430 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateSep 16, 1975
Filing dateAug 29, 1973
Priority dateAug 29, 1973
Also published asCA985264A1
Publication numberUS 3905430 A, US 3905430A, US-A-3905430, US3905430 A, US3905430A
InventorsWilliam N Poundstone
Original AssigneeConsolidation Coal Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Apparatus for raise drilling
US 3905430 A
An apparatus for forming large diameter shafts between the roof of a mine tunnel and the surface of the earth. A pilot hole is drilled between the surface of the earth and the roof of the mine. A pipe is inserted through a pilot hole to the roof of the mine, and an arm is connected to the lower end of the pipe. The arm has a plurality of jets mounted facing toward the roof and in fluid communication with the inside of the pipe. The upper end of the pipe is connected to a high pressure pump which in turn is connected to a source of fluid, such as water. Apparatus is provided for rotating the upper end of the pipe and for pulling the pipe toward the surface of the earth as the roof is eroded by fluids from the jets impinging on the roof of the mine.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent 1191 Poundstone Sept. 16, 1975 [5 APPARATUS FOR RAISE DRILLING 3,470,952 10/1969 Biount 175 422 x 3,675,729 7 1972 N 'l 17 [75] Inventor: William N. Poundstone, Pittsburgh, a son 5/53 P v a Primary Examiner-Frank L. Abbott [73] Assignee: Consolidation Coal Company, Assistant Examiner Richard E. Favreau Pittsburgh, Pa. Attorney, Agent, or Firm-William J. Miller [22] Filed: Aug. 29, 1973 [21 A 1 N '392 602 [57] TRACT 1 pp' 0" An apparatus for forming large diameter shafts between the roof of a mine tunnel and the surface of the [52] US. Cl. 175/53; 175/67; 299/2; arth A ilot hole is drilled between the surface of the 299/18; 2 earth and the roof of the mine. A pipe is inserted [51] Int. Cl.2 E21C 23/00 thr u h a pilot hole to the roof of the mine, and an 1 Field of Search arm is connected to the lower end of the pipe. The arm has a plurality of jets mounted facing toward the roof and in fluid communication with the inside of the [56] R f r n s Cited pipe. The upper end of the pipe is connected to a high UNITED STATES PATENTS pressure pump which in turn is connected to a source 950,363 2/1910 Blake 299 17 x of fluid, Such as Water- Apparatus is Provided for 2,290,502 7/1942 Squires 175/406 x e the upper end of the P p and for Pulling the 2,684,834 7/1954 Miller et a1.. 175 53 pipe tow rd the surface of the earth as the roof is 2,758,653 8/1956 Desbrow 175/50 eroded by fluids from the jets impinging on the roof of 2,785,875 3/1957 Hayes 175/67 X the mi e 2.847,]89 8/1958 Shook 175/285 X 3,231,029 1/1966 Winberg 175/53 1 Clam! 3 Drewlng Flgures 1s a a n a g 0 v 12" 0 0 a ",;.:s g gg o zvfjofl z; a /1: 9:9 -02 M D a DQ000000 b nd 0 0 9 0 Ppfl fl a 0 :0 n i "2523 i i zi v i 66 53 4 i 55 5| WATER 56 1 1 so APPARATUS FOR RAISE DRELLING BRIEF DESCRIPTI'ON OF THE PRIOR ART Raise drilling has been used for many years for forming shafts in mines and for mining operations.

' lower level in a mine and running a cable down the hole which is attached to a drill. The cable is pulled up while the drill is rotated. Means are provided below the drill for catching the material dislodged.

US. Pat. Nos. 3,23 l ,029 and 3,460,867 are also illustrative of this type of mining.

Some reaming has been employed using jets. The patent to Schweitzer et al., US. Pat. No. 2,0I8,284, shows the use of jets to slightly widen the bottom of a well bore, and the patent to Shook, U.S. Pat. No. 2,847,189, illustrates jets used in combination with a scraper for removing material during raise drilling. It should be noted that the jets are not used for the purpose of dislodgihg the coal.

BRIEF DESCRIPTEON OF THE INVENTION One of the extremely costly processes during any mining operation underground is the forming of shafts for either moving men and materials into and out of the mine or for air vents for either moving air into or out of the mine. These shafts will be several hundred feet deep and over 6 feet in diameter. The normal method of forming the shafts is to either bore a hole from the surface or to raise drill from the mine roof to the sur face. In either case the equipment to perform the operation is extremely expensive, usually several million dollars. and requires many personnel over a period of time.

This invention describes a means for forming a large diameter shaft which can be performed by one or two people without an expensive drilling rig. The invention basically consists of drilling a bore hole of small diameter from the surface of the earth to the mine roof. Pipe is inserted into the bore hole to the mine roof where a second pipe, mounted at right angles to the aforementioned pipe, is attached. The right angle pipe has a length equal to the desired radius of the shaft to be formed. The right angle pipe has mounted thereon a plurality of jets having an extremely small orifice and attached at an angle to the pipe. A high pressure pump is rigidly attached to the top of the pipe with its inlet connected to a rotatably sealed pipe. A source of water is connected to this pipe. Water will flow to the pump where it is compressed to an extremely high pressure, for example, 20,000 pounds, and forced down the pipe and into the jets. The bore hole pipe is rotated, causing the jets to cut the roof of the mine as the pipe is being rotated. The angle of the jets prevents cutting uniform ridges in the roof of the mine.

The invention above-described will form large diameter shafts with a very minimum of horsepower and equipment and few people to operate the apparatus.

DESCRIPTION OF THE FIGURES FIG. i shows the cross-scction of earth from the surface to a mine tunnel and details the pilot drill and the right angle jet cutting pipe;

FIG. 2 is a view taken through lines 2-2 of FIG. I; and

FIG. 3 is a detailed drawing of the right angle pipe and jets illustrated in FIG. 1.

Referring to all of the drawings but in particular to FIG. 1, a bore hole is drilled from the surface 11 to a mine tunnel 12. A casing 13 is used to line the bore hole to a particular depth. The casing in FIG. 1 is illustrated as lining the bore hole from the surface 11 to tunnel 12; however, the casing could stop far short of this depth, for example, at depth 15. The remainder of the bore hole could be left uncased.

Inside the casing is inserted a communicating means such as a vertical support pipe 16 being attached to right angles to a jet mounting pipe 17. A plurality of jets I8 is attached to mounting pipe 17 so that the jets are in fluid communication with the interior of pipe 17. Jets 18 have an orifice 19 at their terminus having a diameter which depends upon the amount of horsepower available. Details of a preferred embodiment will be disclosed in the discussion of FIG. 3.

At the surface of the earth a drill rig 20 is placed over well bore 10. Casing 13 extends through a base 21 of drill rig 20 and has a rotatable means 22 mounted thereto. Rotatable means 22 is mechanically connected to vertical support pipe 16 and rotatably mounted on casing 13 by means of bearing 23. A pipe 24 is connected to vertical support pipe 16 by any usual means, such as threads, at one end and is connected to pump 25 at its outlet 26. An inlet pipe 27 has one end connected to the inlet 28 of pump 25 and has the other end hook 41 to an eye 42 attachedto the top"of rotatable seal The other end of pulley block is connected through a plurality of lines 43 to a winch 44. l

The material being dislodged by jets 18 may be collected in a hopper having an outlet 51 which can drop into a conveyer 52 to a crusher 53, a second conveyer 54, and into a slurry'hopper system 55. Water will be supplied through a pipe 56 to slurry hopper and the mixture removed from hopper 55 through a pump 58 and slurry pipe 57 to the disposal area for the mined material.

Hopper 50 may be supported against the roof by any usual means, such as hydraulic supports 60. Supports 60 may also be mechanical. If hopper 50 and the subsequent conveyer system and slurry system are not desired, the material can be collected in any ordinary manner, such as permitting it to drop to the mine floor and removing it by conveyers'to shuttle cars or high loaders to any form of mine transportation.

Referring to FIG. 3., a detail of the jets .is illustrated.

The angle 6 is sufficient to prevent the jet from creating channels in the coal which would happen if the jets were vertical. The orifice size, as previously mentioned, for the preferred embodiment is 0.008 inch in diameter and can handle 6 to l0 horsepower per nozzle. Jets should be mounted apart by a distance of 3 to 4 inches. The distance from the top of the mounting pipe 17 to the roof of the mine will be approximately 4. to 5 inches. Assuming 6 to 10 horsepower per nozzle, it is estimated that no more than 4,000 to 5,000 horsepower will be required to bore a hole. Little energy is required to rotate the vertical support pipe 16 and the jet mounting pipe 17; therefore, asmall motor 70 is connected through a belt drive 71 to rotatable means 22.

OPERATION The apparatus described in FIGS. 1 through 3 operates in the following manner:

Motor 70 through belt drive 71 rotates rotatable means 22 which is mechanically secured to vertical support pipe 16 causing same to rotate. Since jet mounting pipe 17 is likewise rigidly connected to vertical support pipe 16, jet mounting pipe 17 will rotate through 360 about the axis of pipe 16.

Fluids entering pipe 31 either directly or through pump 33 will pass through rotatable seal 30 and to the inlet 28 of pump 25 where the water is compressed to 20,000 to 30,000 pounds per square inch. The highly compressed water is then pumped through pipe 24 to vertical support pipe 16 and into jet mounting pipe 17. The high pressure fluid or water will then enter jets 18 and out of orifice 19 against the roof of mine 12.

The high velocity jets will dislodge the material above them, causing it to drop to the hopper. Hopper outlet 51 can be opened and closed by a mechanical arm control 59. Once the coal passes through outlet 51, it will drop onto conveyer 52 and be conveyed to crusher 53 where, once crushed, it will drop onto conveyer 54 and into slurry hopper 55. As previously mentioned the slurry system does not need to be incorporated. The material can fall to the floor of the mine where it can be removed by any suitable means, or it can fall into the hopper as shown in FIG. 1 and the coal dropped from outlet 51 to any suitable hauling means.

Approximately 30 gallons of water a minute will be jetted against the roof of the mine. The amount of water being released by the jets can therefore be easily absorbed by the material being mined and hauled away; therefore. nno accumulation of water to any appreciable extent will form on the mine floor.

Pump 25 has its outlet directly connected to pipe 24. No rotatable seal is used because the high pressure involved would cause extreme technical difficulties. The low pressure side, however, would not pose a problem for a rotatable seal. The pump 25 is powered by slip rings mounted around the rotational axis of the pump and connected electrically to the pump. Brushes biased against the slip rings are connected electrically to a source of power all in a manner well known in the art.

As the surface is eroded by the high velocity jets, winch 44 will apply tension to lines 43 which will lift pulley block 40. Hook 41 through eye 42 will raise rotatable seal 30, pump 25, and vertical support pipe 16. Once a new joint of pipe in vertical support pipe 16 moves above rotatable means 22, any suitable clamping arrangement can be utilized to hold pipe 16 until a section is removed and pump 25 is reconnected. A split clamp, such as 95, mounted on top of rotatable means 22 can be used to retain pipe 16.

It is obvious that changes and modifications can be made in the apparatus disclosed in this specification and claims. These modifications and changes are fully within the scope of this invention.

' I claim:

1. An apparatus for forming large diameter shafts between the roof of a mine tunnel and the surface of the earth having rock and material therebetween comprising:

a. means for forming a pilot hole between said surface and said roof;

b. means communicating through said pilot hole for conveying fluids under pressure, said communication means having an upper end and a lower end;

0. pump means having an inlet and an outlet, means for securing said pump means rigidly to said communicating means, swivel joint means having an inlet and an outlet, means for connecting the outlet of said swivel joint means to the inlet of said pump means, and means for connecting the inlet of said swivel joint means to a source of fluid;

d. a jet mounting pipe attached to the lower end of said communication means, said jet mounting pipe having fluid communication with said communication means;

6. a plurality of jets attached to said jet mounting pipe, said plurality of jets adapted to direct said fluid under high pressure against the exposed surface of said rock and material above said mine roof, thereby dislodging same;

f. means for rotating said communication means and said jet mounting pipe; and

g. means for raising said communication means, pump means, and said jet mounting pipe as said rock and material are dislodged by said jets.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US950363 *May 15, 1909Feb 22, 1910Thomas W BlakeMethod of mining gilsonite.
US2290502 *Dec 29, 1938Jul 21, 1942Dow Chemical CoApparatus for forming subterranean cavities
US2684834 *Oct 7, 1950Jul 27, 1954John OsbornHorizontal boring machine
US2758653 *Dec 16, 1954Aug 14, 1956Desbrow Floyd HApparatus for penetrating and hydraulically eracturing well formations
US2785875 *Dec 20, 1954Mar 19, 1957Hayes Charles MJet reamer
US2847189 *Jan 8, 1953Aug 12, 1958Texas CoApparatus for reaming holes drilled in the earth
US3231029 *Oct 28, 1963Jan 25, 1966Robbins & Assoc James SArticulated drilling shafts for raise drilling
US3470952 *Feb 8, 1968Oct 7, 1969Mobil Oil CorpErosion protection for wells
US3675729 *May 8, 1970Jul 11, 1972Smith InternationalBit lubrication system
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4042047 *Nov 11, 1976Aug 16, 1977Ingersoll-Rand CompanyRaise boring head having fluid traversing means
US4069760 *Mar 1, 1976Jan 24, 1978Eckels Robert EMethod for driving a shaft with shaped charges
US4279444 *Jan 7, 1980Jul 21, 1981Occidental Oil Shale, Inc.Drilling, detonation explosives
US4448270 *May 10, 1982May 15, 1984Hughes Tool CompanyVariable diameter earth boring bit
DE2709474A1 *Mar 4, 1977Sep 15, 1977Rodney L NelsonVerfahren und geraet zur bergarbeit
U.S. Classification175/53, 299/19, 299/17, 175/67, 299/18, 299/2
International ClassificationE21B7/18, E21B7/28, E21D3/00, E21D9/10
Cooperative ClassificationE21B7/28, E21D3/00, E21B7/18, E21D9/1066
European ClassificationE21B7/28, E21D3/00, E21D9/10G, E21B7/18
Legal Events
May 16, 1988ASAssignment
Effective date: 19870227