Short-Wave Infrared Heaters Case Study: Ernest Henry Mine Recreation Area



Heating an outdoor area efficiently is not a simple task. When deciding to replace inefficient and ineffective bottle gas ‘mushroom’ heaters, this was exactly the challenge faced by Ernest Henry Mine for their outdoor Recreation Area.

Luckily, for them, their major electrical supplier, Sherriff Infrastructure at Garbutt knew where to look for an efficient outdoor heating solution – Heliosa 66 short-wave infrared heaters. The Heliosa 66 has proven to be the ideal solution to meet the comfort outdoor heating needs of the off-duty workforce. 


What is short-wave infrared? 

Short-wave infrared heating technology operates on a wavelength that allows for instant and effective heat transfer. Unlike alternative types of infrared heating, short-wave heaters radiate energy off surfaces such as people and furniture rather than heating air, making them ideal for outdoor spaces because the feeling of warmth is much less affected by ambient temperature or air movement. 


Space Assessment & Selection 

The accommodation Block’s outdoor recreational area experiences significant temperature fluctuations with lower day and night time temperatures, especially during the colder months. The area has shade cloth to protect those underneath it from the strong sun in summer, but this area is still prone to becoming wet, so any solution needed to be able to handle rainfall.  In addition, the permanent mounting of heaters to the shade cloth structure would result in the heaters being in proximity to the shade cloth.   

The Heliosa 66 short-wave infrared heaters were ideal for this location. The combination of a short-wave lamp with a patented parabolic reflector guarantees that the energy produced is projected away from the heater casing – this barely reaches temperatures of 45°C even when left on all day, so not a temperature that would damage shade cloth. The heaters are also rated for use in wet weather and even function safely when rain is falling!  Finally, mounting heights of 2.4m required for this area was ideal for this heater. 


Installation & Placement 

SBH Solutions supplies heat maps and installation location advice to any customer that requires this. In this case, in consultation with Sherriff who sourced the dimensions and site photos, a clear proposal was put together so that mine management could see what they were purchasing, and site electricians could see exactly where they should install. 


Infrared Heater Installation Result 

The installation of Heliosa 66 short-wave infrared heaters at the Ernest Henry Mine Social Club has transformed the outdoor experience for miners and visitors alike. With twelve 2kW heaters strategically positioned across the three sections of the 20m x 8m area, warmth is now readily available regardless of weather conditions. This has increased comfort levels and extended the usability of the outdoor space, encouraging more frequent and prolonged use. 

More and more mines are recognising the convenience, effectiveness and lower running costs of short-wave infrared heating, particularly as compared to traditional gas bottle ‘mushroom’ heaters. SBH Solutions is happy to work with any mine or mine electrical supplier to assist with the transformation to this 21st Century outdoor form of heating!