A new Komatsu PC8000-11 surface mining excavator has arrived at Hudbay Minerals’ Copper Mountain mine in Princeton, British Columbia, Canada, as part of the company’s plans to reduce emissions and up productivity at the operation.
Officials from SMS Equipment, Komatsu Germany and Hudbay Minerals Inc gathered at the mine recently to celebrate the arrival of the machine, which, at 9.7-m tall, 10-m-wide and weighing nearly 800 t, is the largest surface mining excavator on the market, according to Komatsu. The PC8000-11 operates solely on electricity, contributing to the operation’s emissions-reduction strategy.
“Embracing a sustainable future through electrification is an important step in our collective journey to decarbonisation,” Dennis Chmielewski, Executive Vice President, Mining at SMS Equipment, says. “We are a proud equipment, service and technology solutions partner to Hudbay and a long-time supporter of the Copper Mountain mine trolley-assist project. The addition of a large-capacity excavator to the mine’s electric infrastructure marks exciting progress on its path to net-zero.”
The Copper Mountain mine is one of the only open-pit mines in North America to operate an electric trolley-assist haulage system. The 1-km haul ramp and seven pantograph-equipped electric haul trucks that comprise the project were commissioned in the spring of 2022, in partnership with SMS Equipment, Komatsu, ABB, Clean BC and B.C. Hydro. The latest PC8000 joins two other electric excavators operating at the site that complement the mine’s overall electric fleet.
Walt Halipchuk, Director of Sustainability and Assets, Hudbay, said: “Electric equipment and infrastructure significantly reduce our reliance on diesel, the largest source of GHG emissions at the mine. With the help of this technology, we are on track to reduce our emissions in 2024 by 6,000 t of CO2e.
“The journey to net-zero is not one we can navigate alone. With the help of value-added partners like SMS Equipment and Komatsu, we can explore our challenges and find sustainable solutions without sacrificing productivity, efficiency or profitability.”
The Komatsu shovel was made in Germany and assembled at Copper Mountain mine earlier this year. Komatsu officials, including the President and Managing Director of Komatsu Germany GmbH, were on-site for a handover ceremony and reception for Hudbay employees and SMS Equipment representatives.