Mining company to bring 110 jobs to Lead

This graphic shows the new space that will be excavated at the 4,850 level of the Sanford Lab for the Long Baseline Neutrino Facility. The shaft in the bottom left is the Ross Shaft. The north and south caverns will be 475 feet long, 65 feet wide and 92 feet high, and will house the massive Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment particle detector modules. The central cavern will be 624 feet long, 64 feet wide, and 37 feet high. It will accommodate utilities needed for the experiment. Photo courtesy of Fermilab

LEAD — A Canadian-based mining company is setting up shop in Lead and bringing more than 100 jobs with them.

Thyssen Mining Company, one of North America’s largest mining companies, has signed a three-year contract to excavate space for the Long Baseline Neutrino Facility (LBNF) at the Sanford Lab. The company plans to bring about 110 jobs for miners, operators, mechanics, electricians, engineers, and managers. The jobs will be filled with a mix of transfers within the company, as well as local hires. Thyssen Mining is currently preparing office space in Lead, as well as getting personnel lined up, contracting with local vendors, and preparing equipment for the project. Crews are scheduled to begin working underground in April 2021.

“Thyssen Mining strongly believes in supporting the community,” said Ryan Moe, U.S. General Manager with the company. “We believe that by engaging with the local community and hiring local employees, we benefit from their experiences. Here in Lead, S.D., there is a rich tradition of mining, and we look forward to integrating their knowledge and experience.”

Kevin Wagner, executive director of Deadwood-Lead Economic Development, which has been working with Thyssen Mining to help them make the move to this area, said the company’s presence will be significant.

“They are going to be influxing a large amount of individuals that are non-local hires,” Wagner said. “These are new people in our community that will be here for an extended period of time. We’re excited about that. We’re excited to house them and to have them be part of our community for whatever amount of time they are going to be here for. Obviously they are going to bring some job creation with them because they will have certain positions that they will not relocate existing staff for.”

In order to build the LBNF, Thyssen Mining will excavate about 800,000 tons of rock to build three caverns that will be about seven stories tall and will cover an area of about two football fields. That rock will be moved up a vertical shaft from the 4,850 level of the Sanford Underground Research Facility, and transported about 4,200-feet on conveyor belts, across Highway 14A and dumped into Lead’s Open Cut.

The total underground footprint of the facility will be about four acres.

The Long Baseline Neutrino Facility (LBNF) is the space where the Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment (DUNE) will be located. The experiment will have scientists from Fermilab shoot a beam of neutrinos through the earth, to the underground detectors at the Long Baseline Neutrino Facility at Sanford Lab. More than 1,000 scientists from 30 different countries will study the beam with three goals, including understanding whether neutrinos are the reason the universe is made of matter; looking for subatomic phenomena that could help realize Einstein’s unification of forces; and watching for neutrinos emerging from an exploding star in hopes of witnessing the birth of a neutron star or black hole.

According to the company website, Thyssen Mining Company has interests around the world, including Germany, Russia, Australia, South Africa and more. Executives from the company are scheduled to be the keynote speaker at the Deadwood-Lead Economic Development meeting, Dec. 1.

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(1) comment


To see such a great job opportunity to come to the area of lead is great. I have recently thought about changing job/occupation and reading this article made me think this would be a great opportunity. So I logged into the mining company’s website, sadly I saw 4 jobs that were posted!!! Maybe next time Sanford Lab should be a little less public about some of these things and get the locals hopes up that better paying jobs could be coming to the area!

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