Current Underground Research Facilities
There are currently six dedicated re-use facilities in the mine. Some activities, e.g. MINETRAIN and Muography, utilise the whole mine. Each facility is equipped with 230 VAC/50 Hz and access to industrial multiphase power sockets (400 VAC). For safety, there is two-way radio connection and gigabit optical network with subnet and VPN possibilities. The naming of the facilities is based on the order of introduction.
Lab 1 is 75 meters underground, and it is reachable from the surface in 5 minutes by car. The experiment is built in the caverns of 75 m and extension has been built at the level of 45 m. The main system and the extension are connected through a drill hole connection to provide electricity and optical network cables for both data transfer and triggering. Here are harsh (average temperature 9±2 C and relative air humidity 100%) but all the detectors and instruments can be inside dedicated farming plywood stations, kept dry and warm with heaters. The Lab hosts the EMMA experiment, which measures cosmic rays’ composition and measurements for the NEMESIS collaboration, interested in muon-induced neutron yield.
Lab 2 is built in an old exploration tunnel at a depth of 1430 meters. This is currently the deepest located Lab and is only ten meters above the bottom of the mine. The Lab consists of entrance and experimental halls both 120 m2. There is a concrete floor and shotcrete walls and roof. Extra rock stability is achieved through an additional 4 km of rock bolts installed into the rock. The Lab can be reached via the incline tunnel from the surface, which takes approximately 30 minutes. Another option is to take the elevator to the main level, located at a depth of 1410 meters, and from there drive 5 minutes to Lab 2. The temperature on average is 26 degrees Celsius, and relative humidity varies between 55-65%. The experimental hall currently hosts the Callio Edible Insects From Mine -project (CEIFM).
Lab 3 is located at the depth of 990 meters. The Lab 3 is based on the existing infrastructures at the level. At this level there has been tests for mushroom growing, radon barriers and latest building information model tests. The Lab 3 can be reached from the surface by car in 30 minutes and from the main level in 10 minutes.
Lab 4 consists currently of two underground greenhouses. The greenhouses are equipped with fully automated hydroponic nutrition delivery systems. The site oversight is provided by Natural Resources Institute Finland. The location for the Lab 4 was selected based on the optimal surrounding temperature of 16 degrees Celcius. This stable temperature could be found at the depth of 660 m. The greenhouses can be reached from the surface by car in 20 minutes.
Lab 5 is located in tandem with the main level storage facilities at a depth of 1410 meters. The location is easy walking distance to the restaurant, electrical workshop, maintenance halls and restrooms. It is accessed via the elevator shaft to the main level, from where it is a short 2-minute walk to Lab 5. For the transportation of materials and larger equipment, it is recommended to use the incline tunnel from the surface. Temperature is a consistent 24 degrees Celsius and relative humidity is 49%. Lab 5 currently houses the C14 experiment as well as the Baltic Scientific Instruments HPGe gamma spectrometer.
LAB 6 – the underground rescue
At the level of 400 m, the underground rescue site hosts state-of-the-art facilities for education, training, development, and innovation occupational safety utilizing the unique Underground infrastructure of the Pyhäsalmi Mine. A virtual training accompanies the physical infrastructure environment.
The target group include e.g. Mining Companies and their Subcontractors, Construction Companies, Energy Sector players, Nuclear Power Station Rescue Units, Research Institutes and Regional Fire & Rescue Services.
Contact: Project manager Risto Mäkeläinen, +358 40 620 5682, firstname.lastname@example.org
In addition to Labs 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5, the mine in its entirety can also be considered an underground laboratory. Research and experimentation can be conducted outside of these established laboratories almost anywhere in the mine, with suitable preparation and safety precautions. In these cases, passage and transportation to the levels are done via the incline tunnel. Examples of such a wide use are the EIT RM MINETRAIN and H2020 GOLDENEYE projects.