The Mackay region will soon be home to a resources centre of excellence that will facilitate mining industry research, training and collaboration in the region.
As part of the development, the site will feature an Underground Mining Simulated Training Facility and a proposed Black Lung Centre.
Mackay Regional Council has recently earmarked $7.2 million towards the development of the centre in collaboration with the Mackay Resources Industry network and the state government.
Stage one of the Centre of Excellence project will be the “centrepiece” of the project, with plans in place for an underground simulated mine at the Paget site.
Stage two will involve an automated truck circuit, while stage three will see the centre partner with CQUniversity.
The Resources Centre of Excellence is expected to be a collaborative partnership that brings together the current and proposed facilities in the region including, but not limited to:
– Central Queensland University’s (CQU) Engineering Trade Training Facility;
– CQU’s Robotics and Mechatronics Facility;
– Health and Safety Centre – including the GP super clinic and JCU’s proposed Black Lung Centre of Excellence;
– Research & Development Incubators;
– Registered Training Organisations;
– A new Underground Mining Simulated Training Facility (UMSTF).
The centre will be linked to the Mackay-Isaac-Whitsunday Mining Equipment Technical Services (METS) export hub that ims to link Mackay region businesses to the broader global industry.
The state government said last year that the underground coal mine simulator will also be available for testing, demonstrating and filming new equipment and products operating in confined spaces, will enable new emergency response procedures to be practised and refined and will allow tourists to experience what it is like working in an underground coal mine.
The centre will support three new full-time jobs in management and scientific research roles, and once operational, staff will begin to map actual test mine sites, so that the simulator will be able to replicate physical conditions so that testing can be in real or close-to-real conditions, as opposed to laboratory-based conditions.
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