Project duration: 1 January 2020 – 31 December 2022

Objective

Diesel exhausts are a growing issue in underground mining, both in terms of working environment and ventilation costs. This project will build upon the Battery Powered Mining Truck developed in SIMS. Current battery technology is capable of converting all mining vehicles to zero emissions, except trucks using long ramps, which requires another solution, the Trolley Truck.

The solution (technology)

A major part of underground mining machines are powered by diesel engines today. The diesel exhaust gases are a health problem in underground mines and require a lot of costly ventilation.The trend in underground mining industry is to reduce or eliminate diesel exhausts.

The new battery machines and deliveries from SIMS program will have a major impact on electrification in the mining industry. The major exception are machines that transport ore from large depths over long distances. The batteries needed for such use would be too large using today’s available technology. The most realistic solution is to supply electric power from the ceiling in the form of a electrified trolley system while driving/operating the mining machine. The key to making this concept mature is to develop a system that is based on an open-system approach and is manageable to install. This needs well defined requirements on the machine, installation and interface. Challenges (different from train and road application) to be especially considered are high power needs, limited space for installation, rough road conditions and conductive dust.

The purpose of this project is to build upon the existing battery-powered mining machines developed in SIMS and to add an electrical trolley system powered by the mine sites power grid. The scope includes identifying customer, technical and safety requirements from a machine and installation point of view and to develop solutions to be implemented in underground mines.

Partnership

  • ABB Oy, Process Industries, Electrification, Finland
  • Boliden Mineral AB, Sweden
  • Tallinn University of Technology, Estonia
  • Epiroc Rock Drills AB (Lead Partner), Sweden