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Maximum blast containment means greater fragmentation and micro-fractures, with more tonnage processed at less cost. Following ore body fractures created by the explosive shock waves, the Varistem improves expanding gas containment. The greater the gas containment time within the ore mass fractures, the better the fragmentation. Expanding gas fragmentation is substantially cheaper than mechanical breakage.

The Varistem reduces processing costs, with the Varistem achieving up to a 25% increase in fragmentation. Independent studies also show the VARISTEM can increase blast patterns 10% or more, with the same fragmentation for major savings in drilling and explosive costs. The "very low cost" Varistem is the most efficient means of reducing costs in blasting and processing.

Blasting plug demonstration

Varistem Blast Comparisons

Demonstration of ANFO detonation with Stemming Plugs
Gold Mine Blast (Video 1)
Demonstration of ANFO detonation with Stemming Plugs
Gold Mine Blast (Video 2)
Drill Cuttings used as Stemming Material
Drill Dust as Stemming
Demonstration of Bridge Demolition with Stemming Plugs
Bridge Demolition
This video shows a side-by-side blast comparison in the same ore consistency. You clearly see the difference in blast containment between the Varistem and the non-plugged blasts.

The Varistem provided blast confinement resulting in better ore fragmentation, greater crusher throughput, reduced milling time, and blast control (less fly rock, noise and dust).
This video demonstrates the VARISTEM's ability to confine the blast force inside the ore mass, which allows for greater ore fragmentation and ore milling savings, and less fly rock, noise, and dust.

In this video, the VARISTEM worked with drill cuttings (dust) as the stemming material. Only three drill holes blew, and the drill book showed excessive ANFO used.

This limestone quarry reduced the drill size from 7⅞” (200mm) to 7⅜” (187mm) for a 10% ANFO savings. The improvement in blast containment also allowed them to increase the burden by 5% and the pattern spread by 10% for additional savings in ANFO and drill costs.
Six 3½” (89mm) drill holes in the top of each pillar.

Observe how the VARISTEM prevents the blast force is from escaping through the drill holes, and instead directs the force out the sides of the pillar.

Varistem Blast Comparisons

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Varistem Plugs -- Blasting Supplies for Improved Blast Performance