Tag Archives: rotary blasthole drill

Caterpillar releases new blasthole rig for large-scale mining

Caterpillar says its newest ultra-class rotary blasthole drill rig provides the optimal mix of on-board air, feed force, rotary torque and machine mobility.

Designed for large blasthole production drilling, the MD6380 can deliver a hole diameter range of 251-381 mm, single-pass hole depth of 19.8 m and multi-pass hole depth of 39.5 m, according to the company.

The MD6380 powertrain is designed to efficiently manage loads generated by the compressor and hydraulics, delivering superior fuel economy, Cat says. The compressor is configured with electronic regulation and variable volume air control, allowing the driller to match compressor output with drill tool and application needs. It also lowers standby pressures while the machine is in idle, further improving fuel efficiency.

The MD6380 is capable of pulldown force of 49,895 kg and rotation torque of as much as 20,880 Nm, Cat says, adding that the Cat 3512C diesel engine produces 960 kW and delivers emissions performance equivalent to US EPA Tier 2 and EU Stage II. The powertrain offers extended durability and high availability to help boost use and lower costs, the company added.

Controlled through Cat electronics, the MD6380 has integrated machine protective features and interlocks to help keep operators safe and the machine up and running by preventing potential failures or misuse. Cat Electronic Technician makes troubleshooting quick and easy, the company said. Drill electronics also provide a common platform for the integration of automation solutions.

The MD6380 features a spacious cab that offers superior operator comfort and machine control, Cat says, while an intuitive multi-function joystick controls and touchscreens promote efficient operation.

Display screens are adjustable to suit the driller’s reach and line of sight, and the driller can easily tram from a seated position, according to the mining OEM. “With a full-length driller window, large pane glass around the cab and four standard high-definition cameras, operators have excellent views of key areas,” Cat says.

The machine also features Drill Assist, which delivers automated functions including auto level, auto retract jacks, auto raise and lower mast, and auto drill. The drill depth monitoring system helps to reduce both over- and under-drilling.

The MD6380 incorporates Cat Terrain for drilling, with the MineStar™ technology providing precise hole location, production reporting and strata reporting. Terrain seamlessly connects to Cat Command, offering a path to remote operation and autonomous drilling, Cat added.

“The drill features a best-in-class working envelope with a low centre of gravity and ample approach angles,” Cat claims. These attributes aid manoeuvrability, allowing it to navigate quickly and efficiently hole-to-hole and bench-to-bench.

The Cat excavator-style undercarriage has grease lubricated track pins, positive pin retention and automatic track chain tensioning – all to help the undercarriage deliver extended durability and optimal performance on grades and in tough operating conditions, the company says.

The MD6380 is designed to be rebuilt multiple times for lowest lifecycle costs.

“With parts, maintenance services, condition monitoring and component rebuilds, Cat dealers help ensure high productivity and lowest cost per tonne,” the company said.

Sandvik ups single-pass capacity on newest DR416i rotary blasthole drill

Sandvik Mining and Rock Technology says it is continuing its tradition of developing innovative technology to help customers enhance safety, improve productivity and reduce cost with the introduction of its Sandvik DR416i rotary blasthole drill.

Designed to improve efficiency and deliver dependable penetration in the world’s harshest mining conditions, the Sandvik DR416i delivers a single-pass capacity of 21 m (69 ft), the longest single-pass mast in its class, according to the company.

The drill rig is constructed for large diameter (406 mm/16 in) rotary drilling, is automation-ready, scalable, and “supplies the highest rotational torques and pull-down forces at the lowest possible operating cost”, Sandvik said. It’s also equipped with the company’s patented Compressor Management System (CMS), designed to reduce fuel consumption and improve productivity.

The three key principles that led the innovative design efforts of the Sandvik DR416i are safety, productivity and value, Sandvik said.

The blueprint for the Sandvik DR416i is focused on space, accessibility, visibility and automation to ensure operator safety, including the following features:

  • Easy-access 360° walkways;
  • Four egress points;
  • Easy access to mast components, and;
  • Non-rust, fiberglass-reinforced grating.

“Designed with a mix of durability and innovation, the Sandvik DR416i achieves optimal availability and productivity,” Sandvik said. It does this through features such as:

  • Dual feed speeds for greater drilling control and faster retract;
  • Auto-setup, auto mast raise/lower, auto-levelling and auto-drill;
  • ‘Live Tower’ design, lower/raise mast with rotary head and pipe at top of mast, and;
  • Traveling centraliser for straighter holes and reduced drill pipe wear.

The Sandvik DR416i is equipped with several features that improve the efficiency of customers’ operations while also cutting costs, according to the company. The CMS saves up to 30% on fuel consumption, while independent cooling offers quick core replacement. Sandvik also claims that the rig’s increased service intervals increase availability and reduces interaction, while there is advanced troubleshooting available via the controls system to help identify problems before picking up a wrench.

Dave Shellhammer, President, Rotary Drilling Division, Sandvik Mining and Rock Technology, said: “In developing the latest addition to our iSeries family, we looked at our customers’ greatest challenges in the large-diameter drill space and developed a cost-effective, highly-efficient solution to solve those challenges.”

Cat sizes up miners’ drilling needs with expanded line of Tricone bits

Caterpillar has expanded its line of Tricone drill bits, offering a wider range of diameters with the high wear resistance, improved rock fragmentation and superior rates of penetration customers expect.

Cat® Tricone drill bits are designed for the most severe rotary blasthole applications, yet are cost effective for a wide range of drilling needs, according to Caterpillar.

The new bit line includes six diameters ranging from 171 mm (6.75 in) to 311 mm (12.25 in.). Their carbide shapes and cutting face arrangements are optimised for high wear resistance and improved rock fragmentation, and the aggressive, long-lasting cutting structure delivers a superior rate of penetration, according to Caterpillar. 

Caterpillar says its heat treatment technology and advanced air-cooled bearing design yields longer bit life and results in lower overall drilling costs.

“Cat bits also use innovative technology to prevent cuttings and unbroken rock ridges from inflicting severe wear on the cone. The result is improved working life,” the company said. Additionally, the gauge row design improves resistance to diameter shrinkage, according to the company.

Cat says its Tricone drill bits have demonstrated significantly lower total cost of drilling in head-to-head tests conducted in copper, iron ore and coal mines.

Caterpillar looks to solve transportability issues with MD6200 rotary blasthole drill

The new Cat® MD6200 rotary blasthole drill has flexibility at its core; being designed as a production drill with the flexibility to do pre-split drilling. And, all of this is in a package that is Caterpillar’s most transportable rotary drill yet.

The MD6200 can perform rotary or DTH drilling in single-pass or multi-pass modes and can drill holes of 127 mm to 200 mm (5-7.87 in) in diameter.

It can drill at a negative angle up to 15°, which enables matching the slope of the highwall for pre-split drilling. This results in cleaner highwalls with less waste material going to downstream operations, according to Cat.

For traditional production drilling, the mast can tilt from vertical out to 30°, while the operator can adjust the mast angle in increments of 5° from the touch screen in the cab — with no special setup required.


The MD6200 can be transported over the road with the mast on, so can roll onto a truck when it’s time to move to another site. The new drill also has the smallest shipping envelope of any drill in its class, says Cat. In some configurations, parts outside the shipping envelope can be removed without the use of lifting tools, allowing two people to prepare it by hand for shipping.

“The drill also offers best-in-class manoeuvrability,” the company says. “Its compact working envelope and powerful undercarriage get it into position faster, reducing the time spent accessing drill patterns and moving between holes.”

A Cat 336 excavator-style undercarriage provides superior durability, tractive effort and drawbar pull, Cat adds.

The MD6200 also benefits from the integration of a Cat C18 engine, available in US EPA Tier 4 Final configuration and in US EPA Tier 2-equivalent configuration to suit regional needs.

Both high pressure and low-pressure compressor configurations offer variable volume air control, matching the compressor output to the drill tool and application needs. The system also lowers stand-by pressures while the machine is idle, further improving fuel efficiency, according to Cat.

The MD6200 also comes with Cat electronics, offering technicians the same architecture used on the company’s other machines. They also provide a platform for automated controls.

“Integrated machine protection features and interlocks help keep operators safe and the machine up and running by preventing potential failures and operating errors,” Cat says.

Product Link™ Elite allows drill health metrics and performance to be easily downloaded and tracked in real time.

The Cat cab

When it comes to the cab, the MD6200 is designed to promote operator comfort and productivity.

Ergonomic controls help the operator remain productive and efficient through the entire shift, while optional upgrades, such as a heated, ventilated seat with heavy-duty suspension and dual-pane glass, provide comfort on long shifts, according to Cat.

“Multifunction joystick controls and touchscreens are intuitive to use, and three standard cameras give the operator awareness of the work area,” Cat says.

The technology options that come with the MD6200 make it more productive and efficient. Drill Assist offers a number of automated functions, including auto level, auto retract jacks, auto raise and lower mast, and auto drill. Meanwhile, the drill depth monitoring system helps to reduce over- and under-drilling, boosting productivity and fragmentation.

The MD6200 is also ready for Cat Terrain for drilling, which uses guidance technologies to help operators drill holes in the exact location specified by the plan, resulting in smoother, safer and more efficient blasting.