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Subsurface Ventilation Engineering

Malcolm J. McPherson

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This book has been written as a reference and text for engineers, researchers, teachers and students who have an interest in the planning and control of the environment in underground openings. While directed primarily toward underground mining operations, the design procedures are also applicable to other complex developments of subsurface space such as nuclear waste repositories, commercial accommodation or vehicular networks. The book will, therefore, be useful for mining, civil, mechanical, and heating, ventilating and air-conditioning engineers involved in such enterprises. The chapters on airborne pollutants highlight means of measurement and control as well as physiological reaction. These topics will be of particular interest to industrial hygienists and students of industrial medicine.

In preparing this updated version of the textbook originally published in 1993 and under the title of Subsurface Ventilation and Environmental Engineering, the opportunity has been taken to update material that has seen significant change since the first version was written. The word ‘Environmental’ has been removed from the title as this term has increasingly come to refer to the surface environment. Several of the major changes are particularly applicable to developments in software that have taken place for planning the ventilation and condition of the underground environment.

The book remains a reference and text for professional engineers, researchers and teachers as well as for undergraduate and graduate students who have an interest in the planning and control of the environment in underground mines or other subsurface openings. Accordingly, the theoretical underpinnings of the subject are dealt with in some detail.

While the practical techniques of topics such as ventilation surveys or the use of computer software are included, this text is not intended specifically to be a ventilation officer’s handbook. Such handbooks are best prepared within individual countries or institutions to reflect local methodologies, conditions and legislation.

Dr. McPherson passed away in November, 2008.  The staff of Mine Ventilation Services prepared this printed second version of the textbook in Dr. McPherson’s memory.