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Canadore collaborates on space mining tool

Sudbury drill firm utilizes North Bay industrial design lab

Canadore College’s innovation centre teamed up with a Sudbury space mining company and a mining supplier on a leading edge drill to be used in deep space exploration.

The staff at the North Bay college’s Innovation Centre for Advanced Manufacturing and Production (ICAMP) has been working with Deltion Innovations and Atlas Copco for nearly eight months to produce prototype tool ends for Deltion’s space mining multi-purpose tool, called PROMPT (Percussive and Rotary Multi-Purpose Tool).

Atlas and Deltion brought the PROMPT concept and tool designs to Canadore’s industrial design lab at its Commerce Court campus for manufacturing and production.

According to a college news release, the centre utilized its “additive manufacturing resources,” including its 3D metal printer and computer numerical control equipment, to prototype the commissioned parts.

The finalized products were recently delivered to Deltion, who will be testing the multi-purpose tool for future deep space applications such as on the moon, Mars and asteroids.

“For obvious reasons, this project was a dream to work on,” said Evan Butler-Jones, ICAMP’s applied research lead in an April 26 release.

“The complexity of this undertaking made it both challenging and exciting. It is thrilling to participate in this small way to Canada’s efforts in developing the space mining industry.”

“Deltion has been working on space mining technologies for almost two decades,” said Deltion CEO Dale Boucher in a news release.

“The use of additive manufacturing is a means to develop the complex geometries required for the tool ends of PROMPT. We are very pleased with the results of this project and we look forward to a continued collaboration with ICAMP.”