Professor Charlie Li of the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim has been awarded the prestigious Northern Lights Technology Award. He gets this recognition for his work with the D-Bolt, a new and innovative rock bolt that helps mines around the world become safer and more efficient. Professor Li, a Swede and formerly rock mechanics engineer at Boliden’s Kristineberg mine, was presented the award yesterday at Mining on Top: Stockholm, a premier mining conference in the Nordic countries.
The D-Bolt®, a patented innovation that Prof. Li started working on in 2006 and was presented to the market from university spin-off Dynamic Rock Support (DRS) in 2009, is now widely in use by mines globally, including in Northern Sweden. The D-Bolt’s innovation lies in a design that in combination with the bolt’s specialized steel reduce the risk and consequences of rock fall in mine tunnels, due to a unique capacity to both withstand high static loads and absorb high levels of dynamic energy released by the rock. The D-Bolt can be installed in much the same way and with the same automated equipment as traditional rock bolts based on standard rebar material, and it is thus well suited to the mining industry’s demand for efficient and user-friendly solutions.
Magnus Ericsson, the Chairman of Raw Materials Group, presented the Northern Lights Award in front of a large crowd of Swedish and international mining professionals, politicians and other major decision makers that had gathered in Stockholm for the 10th edition of Mining on Top. Before handing Prof. Li the diploma and award, he said the jury had emphasized the quality of the innovative work that lead to this important development for deep underground mines.
Charlie Li was very grateful for the award, but in his acceptance speech he expressed even greater gratitude for the fact that the D-Bolt had been so well received by the mining community: -- I want to thank my friends in the mining industry, especially in Sweden, Canada and Australia, for their encouragement, cooperation and support for this innovation, said Charlie Li.
The D-Bolt is being sold to mining customers in Sweden, Canada, Australia, Chile, USA and South Africa, and has received an increased market access after fast growing Finnish technology company Normet acquired Dynamic Rock Support in February this year. Normet also manufactures and supplies equipment and construction chemicals to international mining and tunnelling clients. Trond Skogseth, formerly DRS and now Director of Rock Reinforcement at Normet International, attended the awards ceremony and expressed satisfaction on Prof. Li and D-Bolt’s behalf. – This is a great and well deserved recognition of Charlie’s important work and contribution to this industry, and to the D-Bolt. It is wonderful that such a true Nordic product can help make everyday life of miners around the world a safer one, and this award is another boost in our motivation to present the product to many new mines that has the need for improved rock reinforcement, said Skogseth.