Gorniczy Agregat Gasniczy

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The Górniczy Agregat Gaśniczy (GAG) is a jet engine inertisation unit developed for use in mines, controlling and suppressing coal seam fires and neutralising firedamp situations. The unit was designed in Poland in the 1970s, its name roughly translates as "Mine Fire Suppression Apparatus".[1][2] A GAG 3A unit was developed by the Queensland Mines Rescue Service, in association with the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO).[3] GAG units have been used in Australia since 1998.[2]

Mechanism[edit]

The GAG unit emits carbon dioxide, nitrogen and water vapour.[4] The gases lower the oxygen levels, suppressing fires, and forcing methane out of the mine.[5] A unit is capable of pumping a volume of 25 m3/s, creating levels of less than 1% oxygen.[3] When fully assembled, the unit is 12 metres long and weighs 2.5 tonnes.[4] As of 2010, there were only three GAG units in the world – in Australia, the Netherlands and the Ukraine[6] . The "GAG" unit from the Netherlands is called Steamexfire.

Notable usage[edit]

GAG units have been used in Australia, most notably in 2000 at the Blair Athol Mine, Queensland, where it extinguished a 54-year-old coal fire.[7] In 2003, a team from the Queensland Mine Rescue Service took a unit to West Virginia, where they successfully extinguished a 660-ft deep, two-month-old fire at Loveridge Mine, after ten days of continuous use.[4][7] Queensland's unit was also transported to New Zealand in 2010 for use after the Pike River Mine disaster.[4]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Gillies, Stewart (November 2004). "Mine Fire Simulation in Australian Mines using Computer Software (Abstract)". Australian Coal Association Research Programme. Retrieved 30 November 2010.
  2. ^ a b "Queensland deploys more mine rescue staff, equipment to New Zealand". Media Release. Queensland Department of Mines & Energy. 24 November 2010. Retrieved 30 November 2010.
  3. ^ a b "QMRS Projects". Queensland Mines Rescue Service. 2005. Retrieved 30 November 2010.
  4. ^ a b c d Burke, Jessica (26 November 2010). "Equipment Arrives to Extract Pike River Bodies". Australian mining. Retrieved 30 November 2010.
  5. ^ "Third explosion 'won't set back recovery'". One News. TVNZ. 26 November 2010. Archived from the original on 29 November 2010. Retrieved 30 November 2010.
  6. ^ "Qld team safe as blast rocks mine". Daily Mercury. APN. 29 November 2010. Retrieved 30 November 2010.
  7. ^ a b Page, Douglas (Aug 1, 2003). "Jet engine exhaust is the new weapon in mine fire suppression". Fire Chief. Archived from the original on 2 August 2007. Retrieved 28 April 2014.