El Teniente Copper Mine

El Teniente Copper Mine


Chile — EZ Street cold asphalt overlay, underground roadway repair

El Teniente is the world’s largest copper mine, producing over 100,000 tons/day of copper ore that yield 1,000 tons of pure copper. Nested in the mountains of Chile, It employs over 6,000 people and is Chile’s largest industry.

The mine is comprised of over 1,500 km of underground roadway, of which 25% of that is paved with asphalt. The paved roads serve as the main accesses for general service vehicles and for heavy mining equipment. Contracts to pave the inner roads are let every year due to the frequency of repaving that is needed. A hot asphalt paved interior road life expectancy is six months to one year due to the conditions; average temperature in the mines is 36 °F, roads are subject to constant running water, and 10-15 mile hr winds inside the tunnels.

EZ Street cold asphalt was presented to the mine as an alternative to hot asphalt for overlays in the interior road network. Upon completion of the project, both the contractor and the owner were able to realize substantial savings in effect material costs, mobilization, labor, and provide a more uniform mat surface. EZ Street cold asphalt’s ability to work in the presence of moisture and be transported, stored, and applied at a lower ambient temperature contributed substantially to these savings.

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