Fri Oct 5th, 2007 at 09:06:01 AM EST
Just following on from an interesting post by Nomad last night re the awesome scale of gold mines in South Africa, they have diamonds too, of course.
The Great Hole of Kimberley
The Big Hole is an amazing sight, the largest hand-dug excavation in the world, it is 215 meters deep, with a circumference of approximately 1.6 Km (1 Mile). In the end 22.5 million tons of earth had been removed by muscle power!
The water is about 40m deep apparently, and the water surface is about 175m below ground level.
My thoughts turned to Dinorwig
The simple idea is to install a reservoir/ pool at ground level - drop a few pipes down the side of the Hole and stick Dinorwig-style turbines on the way and then pump water up using off-peak/ spare power (if any!)while pouring it back down again at peak times.
Using this method they could install wind turbines, connect them to the Great Battery Of Kimberley and get better rates for production than they would otherwise do.
But then, they probably use all the energy they can produce anyway...