RULMECA conveyor products for Mae Moh lignite mine in Thailand

At the end of 2016, RULMECA Germany received an order for the delivery of rollers and garlands for the equipment of the new conveyor belt systems of the Mae Moh overburden project No. 8 in northern Thailand. Approximately 18 km of belt system in the widths 2,600 mm, 2,200 mm and 1,800 mm are equipped with RULMECA technology for the upper and lower belt as well as the transfer stations. Sahakol Equipment Public Co is the contracting partner for the procurement of the rollers and garlands. Sahakol operates conveyor belt systems for the EGAT (Energy Generating Authority of Thailand). The long-term relationships of RULMECA to the owner of the open-pit mine as well as to the service provider for the overburden excavation and the associated very good experiences with RULMECA products made it easy for Sahakol to make the decision. In the very well maintained belt systems, ten-year and longer service life is common.

In Thailand, too, the use of conveyor systems is increasingly seen from an ecological point of view. Low energy consumption and low noise emissions are important requirements for bearing rollers, as are long life and associated material and cost savings. Sahakol has decided to use rollers with a diameter of 194 mm. Compared to the diameter of 159 mm used in older belt systems, there is a considerable advantage in terms of energy consumption due to the considerably smaller rolling resistance. With a belt width of 2,000 mm and a belt length of 1,887 m, the reduction in the rolling resistance of up to 300 kW is achieved. Taking into account the fact that the energy is generated in a coal-fired power plant, this means a CO2 saving of about 2,400t/y. This data has convinced the owner of the open pit and the operator of the conveyor systems. In the peripheral equipment such as excavators, crushing plants or spreaders, RULMECA rollers of the same type are used on the operator’s request, which significantly improves spare parts stock and availability.

Energy generation from coal is an important part of the energy mix for the emerging economies in Southeast Asia. With advanced technologies, such as those from RULMECA, this can help to limit the emission of climate-damaging CO2. Until renewable energies have increased their share so that CO2 emissions can be reduced, the focus lies with the Thai energy supplier EGAT on the efficiency improvement of existing plants.