Tag Archives: mining maintenance

Metso Outotec embeds virtual reality into mill lining inspection process

Metso Outotec is launching a patented Virtual Inspection tool for horizontal grinding mill linings to, it says, take the benefits of 3D scanning to a new level.

The new tool enables the scanned mill linings to be viewed in virtual reality and offers an efficient and safe environment for technical discussions, according to the company.

“This innovation is a continuation of Metso Outotec’s pioneering role and its more than six decades of experience in engineering and manufacturing mill liners and grinding mills,” Metso Outotec said.

‘On-site’ mill lining inspections can be safely hosted while being off-site, thanks to the fully immersive virtual walkthroughs and the ability to comprehensively review any particular point of the mill lining. Features like remaining liner thickness measurements and profile review enable the users to make real-time assessments of the liners, while the colour-coded heatmap mode helps in analysing the wear patterns and in detecting problem areas, so that the mill lining design and performance can be improved.

The Virtual Inspection tool aligns with Metso Outotec’s aftermarket digital strategy by improving the efficiency and safety of its services through advanced wear-part analyses, it added.

Lars Furtenbach, Research and Technology Development Manager, Mill Lining Solutions, said: “Our patented MillMapper™ 3D scanning of mill linings has been the industry benchmark for years. The scans are used to understand the way the mill liners wear, to optimise the liner design, and to accurately predict the reline schedules. There is a growing need to find new ways to reach out to our customers and to discuss mill lining performance with them remotely. Our customers will benefit from our strong experience with over 8,000 mills worldwide combined with the market’s most comprehensive offering and the new software platform.”

Komatsu to boost Australia East Coast supply chain with new Wacol distribution centre

A major new distribution centre that, Komatsu says, will significantly increase customer satisfaction by improving parts and components availability, further reduce order turnaround times and streamline ordering efficiency, will be opened by the OEM in the June quarter of 2021.

Komatsu’s new Wacol distribution centre – which will also include elements of its Brisbane parts and components Reman operation – will consolidate four existing distribution and storage centres into a single facility.

Construction of the new Wacol centre, which is currently underway, is scheduled to be completed by May 2021, in time for Komatsu’s global centenary celebrations.

According to Russell Hodson, Komatsu’s General Manager, Supply Chain, the key driver of the new facility is to improve customer satisfaction across its Queensland, New Zealand and New Caledonia operations.

“Customers in these regions – which includes large mining customers – are currently serviced from our various Brisbane facilities, and by consolidating them into a single operation, we anticipate a marked improvement in customer satisfaction,” he said.

“The new facility will also be much safer for Komatsu employees and service providers, making use of the latest warehousing technology and systems, including anti-collision systems and full worker/machine separation throughout.

“In addition, we’ll see improvements in quality by bringing storage of all parts and components under cover, while a one-part/one-location approach will eliminate the chances of binning and picking errors – further contributing to improved customer satisfaction.”

Komatsu will also see some significant efficiency and cost benefits through consolidation to a single facility, maximised space utilisation, and lower transport costs, it said.

“We’re also going to in-source our warehousing operations so all staff will be Komatsu employees, which will better enable us to continue our ongoing program of continuous improvement,” Hodson said.

“At this new facility, we’ll employing 50 new people into Komatsu; we see this as a great opportunity to build a fantastic team that can deliver extraordinary results for our customers in a new and exciting facility.”

The development of this new facility was part of Komatsu’s broader East Coast supply chain strategy, according to Hodson.

“This strategy aims to improve the flow of our goods and information to our customers,” he said. “And there’s much more to come as we strive to continuously improve our operations for the benefit of our customers.”

Being constructed on a 3.8 ha site adjacent to its existing Queensland head office, service, training and customer support facility, the new centre covers nearly 17,000 sq.m, with an order picking storage area of just under 14,500 sq.m, and an extra large parts/components storage area of over 2,000 sq.m, it said.

“When it opens, our new Wacol DC will also fully integrate our mining and construction operations for Queensland, NZ and New Caledonia,” Hodson said.

ExxonMobil launches new synthetic lubricant for mining extremes

ExxonMobil says its new Mobil SHC™ Elite synthetic lubricant can help protect mining equipment operating at extreme hot and cold temperatures, while increasing energy efficiency and extending oil drain intervals.

The breakthrough synthetic lubricant offers class-leading performance benefits to mine operators, according to the company, explaining that extensive testing has shown Mobil SHC Elite can deliver double the oil life of traditional synthetic products and up to 12 times the oil life of mineral products.

The company added: “It can also help protect equipment operating at temperatures up to 150°C in intermittent service, meaning it is ideally suited for use in a range of mining equipment, such as in the gears and bearings of excavators, haul trucks, augers and conveyors.”

The synthetic lubricant is formulated to deliver wear protection and oxidation resistance without any of the compatibility challenges often associated with glycol-based products used in high temperature applications, it said.

In addition, Mobil SHC Elite has also demonstrated an “enhanced torque ratio”, enabling it to deliver a 3.6% energy efficiency improvement when compared with conventional mineral oils, ExxonMobil says.

Emre Noyan, Industrial Marketing Manager at ExxonMobil, said: “Demanding loads and tough conditions mean that every component of mining equipment must be optimised and protected from extreme in-service temperatures.

“Mobil SHC Elite’s extended oil life, wide temperature range performance and energy efficiency improvement can help operators increase uptime and cut costs – giving them a competitive edge.”

Mobil SHC Elite has already received approval for its performance from gearbox manufacturers including Siemens, whose FLENDER gear units depend on effective lubrication to ensure reliability in intense operating environments, the company said.

Martin Engineering sizes up new compact conveyor belt cleaner

Martin Engineering addressed the problem of installing conveyor belt cleaning technology in areas where space is limited with the development of its new design SQC2STM RM (Reduced Mini) cleaner.

The SQC2STM RM is a compact secondary belt cleaner built with a narrow profile that resists material build-up.

Patented rubber buffers maintain cleaning pressure on the new design, engineered to deflect and allow splices to pass without damage to the belt or cleaner, even on reversing belts. The construction incorporates individually-cushioned stainless steel blades with tungsten carbide tips for effective cleaning with negligible risk to belt, splice or blade, and it can withstand even punishing operating conditions, including corrosive environments, high-speed belts and high-tonnage loads, according to the company.

The SQC2S RM requires just 134 mm (5.27 in) of space from the tip of the blade to the bottom of the mainframe, the company says.

Dave Mueller, Conveyor Products Manager at Martin Engineering, said it is not just the size of the cleaner that is a major selling point.

The blades of the cleaner conform to the belt profile and adjust individually to deliver continuous contact across the belt, he said.

“In a perfect world, bulk materials would load uniformly, wearing the blade evenly, but that rarely happens. By having multiple segments attached to a single rigid assembly, the tension can be maintained and adjusted accurately, quickly and safely,” he said.

Like the other designs in the SQC2 product line, blade removal and replacement is carried out by removing the lock pin from the main support assembly and sliding out the cartridge.

“The lock pins are a key component to Martin Engineering’s ‘no-reach design’, which allows workers to conduct their lockout/tag-out procedure more safely,” Martin Engineering said, adding that the unit is one of its Safety First™ family of products, helping customers achieve OSHA compliance.

The cleaner is suitable for belt widths from 450-1,829 mm (18-72 inches) and operating speeds up to 3.81 m/s (750 ft/min). It can be used in applications involving operating temperatures between -34°C and 149°C (-30°F and 300°F) and the design features all-steel powder coated construction (except for the rubber buffer).

Additionally, a dust-tight door to cover the opening for the mainframe has been designed to fit the reduced component size, for a clean, efficient installation, Martin Engineering says.

Similar to the original design, when the blade wears out, the removable cartridge allows easy replacement, so the end user can have a spare cartridge on the shelf and the service can be carried out in a “matter of minutes”, the company says.

Martin Engineering expects the SQC2S RM to be in demand in applications where installation space is at a premium, including biomass, recycling, waste-to-energy, trash sorting, foundries and steel production.

Civmec readies for first shutdown maintenance campaign at Roy Hill iron ore mine

Australia-based Civmec Ltd’s maintenance team is about to mobilise to Roy Hill Holdings’ iron ore operations in the Pilbara of Western Australia as it commences the first shutdown campaign of its long-term services contract with the company.

In July, Civmec was awarded a maintenance contract with Roy Hill and the company is now “working collaboratively on planning, drawing experienced personnel from its extensive resource pool to ensure this first phase of a long maintenance campaign is delivered seamlessly”, it said.

Civmec said the outcomes of this first phase of work, due to start this month, will dictate the client’s approach to ongoing maintenance.

The contract includes providing mechanical, scaffolding, electrical, conveyor and shutdown management services, according to the company.

Civmec said this contract, and others recently secured with the likes of Alcoa, Rio Tinto and Fortescue Metals Group, was the direct result of investing in dedicated maintenance facilities nationally, together with bolstering its maintenance management team capability, training and recruiting.

Patrick Tallon, Civmec’s CEO, said: “We see the commitment towards the continual growth of a maintenance division as a very strategic move to support the significant requirement to maintain the many new plants that have recently been constructed in the minerals and metals and oil and gas sectors across Australia.”

Civmec has traditionally been thought of as a multi-disciplinary heavy engineering construction company.

Roy Hill is a 55 Mt/y iron ore mining, rail and port operation in Western Australia’s Pilbara region. Civmec previously carried out four contracts as part of the build, included heavy engineering and structural, mechanical, piping and electrical instrumentation packages.