Albian Mine Site

The Albian Sands Energy Inc mine site / Muskeg River Mine is part of The Athabasca Oil Sands Project

This multi-billion dollar oil sands mine and bitumen extraction project is a joint venture between Shell Canada Limited, Chevron Canada Limited and Western Oil Sands Inc, and is located 75 kilometers north of Fort McMurray, Alberta.

Oil sands mines and bitumen extraction projects typically transition through three main phases. The first is determining the reserves and potential of the site. Once the decision to develop the site is made, construction takes place. This phase typically lasts three years. The final phase is production, which includes on-going infrastructure services supporting the mining operation.

Our role

For three years prior to construction, Opus Stewart Weir provided mapping and survey support for winter core and auger hole programs, legal surveys, CAD services for land acquisition and control surveys. During the construction phase we provided site survey services for grading, plant site construction, as-builts and QA/QC activities. We also provided engineering design, data storage and excavation permitting services.

Today, on-going mine site activities are being provided through our First Nation joint venture, the Athabaskan Resource Company. These services include 3D scanning, excavation permitting and survey support for construction and mining operations.

The team

The project team included Alberta Land Surveyors, a civil engineer and a survey engineer, a project manager, programmer, CAD and field staff comprised of civil and survey technicians and technologists.

The technology

The project team used a mix of IMS, GPS, GIS, Optec and Cyrax 3D scanners, precise digital levels, specialized software, AutoCAD.


C.O.R.E. accreditation was a program requirement. This program requires the development of a detailed safety program for the company including regular scheduled safety meetings, hazard assessment, job procedures and documented statistics.