Tag Archives: Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions

Sandvik delivers 100th automated loader in APAC region

Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions says it has delivered its 100th loader connected to the AutoMine® platform in the Asia Pacific region.

A Sandvik LH621i loader was delivered to Byrnecut Australia in March, making it Sandvik’s 100th automated load and haul unit to be delivered in APAC.

Sandvik has 30 AutoMine systems installed across Australia, Papua New Guinea and the Philippines, with customers including Barminco, OceanaGold, Redpath, and Byrnecut, who now have 11 sites in Australia connected to AutoMine. The first AutoMine system in the region was delivered and commissioned in 2008 for Mount Isa Copper Operations, now owned by Glencore.

AutoMine is Sandvik’s automation system for autonomous and tele-remote operation for a wide range of Sandvik and non-Sandvik underground and surface equipment. It provides a safe and controlled process to increase mine productivity and profitability, as well as protect operators and other mine personnel in underground and surface operations.

AutoMine can be scaled from tele-remote or autonomous operation of a single machine to multi-machine control and full fleet automation with automatic mission and traffic control capability. Operators can simultaneously control or monitor multiple machines from the comfort and safety of a remote control room, Sandvik says.

Sandvik recently demonstrated this capability with the successful trial remote operation of a LH621i loader at OZ Minerals’ Prominent Hill mine in South Australia. The LH621i was successfully operated from the Remote Operating Centre in OZ Mineral’s Adelaide office, taking OZ Minerals a step closer to realising its goal of remote operations from home.

“The digitalisation field has developed significantly over the years and we have adapted to meet the industry needs along the way,” Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions Technical Support Manager – Mine Automation, Ty Osborne, said.

“We have seen our customers change their mindset from ‘this technology is nice but won’t work in our mine’, to, ‘what do have to do to make this work in our mine?’. Our customers are now seeing the value of including digitalisation in their mine planning and recognise the tangible benefits an automated fleet can bring to their operation.”

Exyn and Sandvik OptiMine auto drone integration tested at Rupert Resources project

Exyn Technologies has announced the expansion of its strategic partnership with Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions to integrate its data into Sandvik’s analytics and process optimisation suite, OptiMine®.

By synthesising critical data and capabilities, Exyn and Sandvik are helping mining customers transform their underground operations to be safer, more productive and more efficient, the companies say.

Back in July, the two companies signed an agreement to work together “to provide efficient solutions for mapping and visioning underground mines, which will make a substantial difference when it comes to mine locations that are hazardous, hard to reach or conventionally time-consuming to survey and inspect”.

In the latest release, the two said: “Using Exyn’s industrial-grade autonomous drone, ExynAero, mining companies can harness completely pilotless flight to access impossible-to-reach data with maximum safety. The data collected is processed using Exyn’s on-board 3D mapping technology – powered by ExynAI – which is then integrated with Sandvik’s OptiMine Mine Visualizer solution for analysis and optimisation of underground mining production and process.”

The partnership allows mining customers to benefit from comprehensive underground aerial 3D mapping with progressive visualisation that increases overall transparency of mining operations – including for GPS-denied, hard-to-reach, or hazardous areas, or locations that would be time-consuming to survey and inspect using conventional methods, according to the companies.

Exyn and Sandvik deployed this integrated solution at gold exploration and development company Rupert Resources’ Pahtavaara project in Finland, using the ExynAero drone to autonomously create a 3D point cloud of an underground stope. This 3D data was then uploaded to Sandvik’s OptiMine Mine Visualizer and georeferenced to the CAD mine model for further analysis and visualisation.

David Hallett, Vice President, Business Unit Automation, Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions, said: “This step in our partnership with Exyn is critical. Our teams have been working closely together to ensure the connection between Exyn and Sandvik’s systems would be seamless and easy for operators to use. When this feature gets rolled out to the market as part of OptiMine, it will allow our customers to analyse Exyn’s high-resolution, aerial maps in OptiMine.

“After this demonstration, we look forward to further developing our partnership and integrating our hardware and software systems in the coming months.”

Nader Elm, CEO and Co-Founder of Exyn Technologies, added: “We’re very proud to expand our partnership with Sandvik and to deliver the key benefits of safety and operational efficiency to all the humans involved in the mining industry.

“By offering world-class software and technology, we have given customers the ability to map areas underground they could never before reach. Our end goal is to be an integral part of fully autonomous mining operations and I’m confident that through our partnership with Sandvik, we’re one step closer.”

Exyn and Sandvik have more product integrations in the plans, they said.

Sandvik releases ‘totally new’ Toro LH410 underground loader

Sandvik says it is getting ready for an eventful loader and truck year in 2021, both in terms of launching new equipment and introducing upgraded versions of existing models, with the first such release being the “totally renewed” 10-t-payload Toro™ LH410 underground LHD.

The new Toro LH410 loader builds on the best parts of its predecessor, the Sandvik LH410. However, following the footmarks set by Sandvik’s large intelligent loaders, the now introduced Toro LH410 is full of new features, making it, in practice, a totally new machine, Sandvik says.

The Toro LH410 offers best-in-class performance in productivity, for example, by means of high ramp speeds and fast bucket filling. To make truck loading easy, it features superior lift height compared with any other loader of the same size class, Sandvik says. The renewed loader also features Sandvik Intelligent Control System, with a 7 in touch screen display as a user interface, enabling multiple new options to tailor each loader according to customer needs.

Kimmo Ulvelin, Product Line Manager Small and Low Profile Loaders at Sandvik, said: “With all its features, this truly is an advanced and intelligent piece of equipment, definitely comparable to the large i-series loaders – but naturally in a smaller package.

“We want to offer our customers possibilities for sophisticated and intelligent equipment also in the middle size class; and therefore Toro LH410 has the same Sandvik Intelligent Control System as the large Toro LH517i and Toro LH621i loaders, with the available traction control, operator speed assist and integrated weighing system, to name a few. Also, Toro LH410 is fully compatible with AutoMine® solutions. From new features specifically relating to safety, we could mention eg a new retrieval hook, updated door interlock, improved access ways and new type of fire suppression system options.”

The engine range of the Toro LH410 loader includes multiple different diesel engines, starting from a powerful and fuel-efficient Tier II and ending up with the Stage V engine option. The Stage V engine uses passive DPF regeneration taking place during normal operation, minimising downtime. Its modulating engine brake provides better control of vehicle speed downhill while also minimising brake and transmission overheating and brake wear, Sandvik said.

During 2021, new product launches and upgrades are expected to be released to further strengthen the Toro family.

Sandvik equipment starts to arrive for OceanaGold’s Macraes expansion

OceanaGold Corp has received the first of three new Sandvik machines at its Macraes gold mining operation on the South Island of New Zealand.

The company has taken delivery of a 17-t payload Sandvik LH517i underground loader (pictured), Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions confirmed.

A Sandvik TH551i truck and DD421 development drill will also be delivered this year as Macraes prepares to extend its mine life to 2028, the mining OEM said.

The LH517i is a matching pair with the Sandvik TH551i truck. It features the Sandvik Intelligent Control System and My Sandvik Digital Services Knowledge Box™ on-board hardware as standard.

In December, OceanaGold received approval to extend the mine life of the Macraes operation to 2028. This is expected to involve the development of the Golden Point Underground Mine, the Deepdell North Stage III open-pit extension, and the Frasers West expansion.

These projects are forecasted to produce 1.1 Moz of gold over an eight-year mine life, with open-pit and underground operations expected to produce, on average, 150,000-170,000 oz/y of gold.

Sandvik’s Scrivens heads back to Australia to reinforce APAC sales team

Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions’ Asia-Pacific region has further strengthened its leadership team with the appointment of Wayne Scrivens as Vice President, Sales Area APAC.

An experienced mining-sector leader, Scrivens has held the role of Sandvik Vice President for Load & Haul product line for four years, based in Turku, southern Finland. During this time, the Load & Haul division developed the iSeries intelligent trucks and loaders, acquired Artisan Vehicle Systems and introduced Sandvik’s first battery electric loaders and trucks.

“In his 18 years with Sandvik, Scrivens has also held various roles within the company’s underground coal and hard-rock business, as well as in Parts & Service,” the company said. He will start in his new role in Brisbane, Queensland, on April 1, 2021, after returning home to Australia.

Sandvik President for Parts & Service, Erik Lunden, said: “Wayne has extensive leadership skills, a track record of proven performance and a strong commitment to safety and sustainability. He has the capabilities needed to ensure Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions in APAC is positioned for continued growth and future development. I also very much look forward to seeing the difference he is able to make in helping customers solve challenges and become more productive.”

Scrivens (pictured) says he is excited to be heading back to the APAC region: “I’m delighted to be returning to Australia to take on this new role after spending four years working with Sandvik in Europe. My core focus in APAC will be on supporting customers across the region, while also strengthening our focus on automation, electrification and digitalisation, and the value these solutions can deliver to our customer’s operations.”

He added: “Sandvik has recently placed a high level of focus around developing sustainable business goals related to circularity, climate change, safety, and fair play. The idea is that a sustainable approach can open the way for new ways of working that will drive efficiency and productivity. This, in turn, opens up new markets, helps support our customers and helps us sustain long-term growth.”

Chris Parham will remain in the Acting Sales Area Manager role until Scrivens takes up his new position.

Sandvik’s McCoy on ‘getting the basics right’ in digital transformation projects

The application of digital tools is key to continuously improving efficiencies in underground mines, Niel McCoy, Business Line Manager for Automation and Digitalisation at Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions, says.

McCoy says the choice of digital tools needs to be based on each operation’s key performance indicators (KPIs). This is because the solutions that are implemented will be focused on monitoring and managing those KPIs. He then recommends a phased approach to introducing digital tools to an operation.

“The starting point is always machine telemetry and basic production or productivity reporting,” he says. “From there, the solutions can be expanded.”

Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions has extensive experience in designing and implementing digital tools, including equipment health monitoring and process management. Its AutoMine® automation offering operates on 59 mining sites globally, while its OptiMine® suite of digital solutions is active on 66 connected sites. The ‘My Sandvik’ customer portal, a web-based digital hub, serves 214 sites and its Newtrax technology in wireless IoT connectivity is operating on 115 sites.

“Monitoring equipment health through My Sandvik Digital Services Solutions allows users to draw down telemetry data from their equipment in real time,” he says. “The data is automatically compiled into the required report format for quick analysis and response.”

The next aspect to be addressed is the actual management of the process being monitored, he says. This is where Sandvik’s Task Management and Scheduler – part of its Optimine suite of digital solutions – can be applied.

“This allows a tablet to be fitted to an item of equipment so that an underground operator can accept tasks and provide real-time progress reports on those tasks,” he says. “The more advanced the equipment, the more data can be extracted and communicated automatically without operator intervention.”

The solutions allow for data to be recorded on equipment’s key operations – such as the weight of loads in a loader bucket. Telemetry on the equipment gives valuable insight into the equipment’s availability and performance so management can respond.

“When starting digital journeys, the focus must be on improving current operations,” McCoy says. “This means getting work started on time, for instance, before moving onto optimisation efforts. Most digital implementations will battle if the starting point is trying to increase productivity before getting the basics right.”

Sandvik reinforces underground mining safety focus with DSI Underground buy

Sandvik has signed an agreement to acquire DSI Underground, a global leader in ground support and reinforcement products, systems and solutions for the underground mining and tunneling industries, from owner Triton.

The OEM has agreed a purchase price of approximately €943 million ($1.15 million) on a cash and debt free basis, it said, adding that the company will be reported in the Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions division.

Stefan Widing, President and CEO of Sandvik, said: “This acquisition is an important step in our growth ambition. DSI Underground’s track record of driving progress and safety in underground operations and its global reach will further strengthen our world-leading market position within mining and rock solutions.”

DSI Underground is present in 70 countries, with 22 production units situated close to end customers, according to Sandvik. The product offering includes bolting systems, injection chemicals and resin capsules.

Henrik Ager, President of Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions, added: “With the world’s most extensive choice of ground support products and systems, DSI Underground’s offering is highly complementary and enables us to deliver greater value and safety to our customers. The deal gives DSI Underground access to Sandvik’s substantial R&D, global service and sales network, complements our growing aftermarket business and strengthens our leadership in underground mining and tunnelling.”

Michael Reich, CEO DSI Underground, said: “With our knowledge of ground support technologies, we can add a valuable and complementary offering to Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions. On the other hand, we will benefit from the knowledge of the new group and Sandvik’s global customer network.”

DSI Underground has around 2,000 employees, with revenue for 2020 expected to be about €518 million ($631 million, excluding the four joint ventures that are part of the acquisition). The purchase price is approximately €943 million on a cash and debt free basis.

The transaction is expected to close by mid-2021 and is subject to relevant regulatory approvals.

Barrick to receive three more Artisan Z50 battery-electric trucks, Ager says

Sandvik Mining and Rock Technology has signed an agreement with Barrick Gold that could see four Artisan Z50 battery-electric trucks deployed at the miner’s majority-owned operations in Nevada, Henrik Ager confirmed this week.

Speaking at Sandvik’s Capital Markets Day on Tuesday, Ager, President of Sandvik Mining and Rock Technology (soon to be President of Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions), said the company had just signed “a cooperation partnership” with Barrick in relation to the delivery.

“We have one (truck) operating already and have three coming,” he said.

Back in May, a Barrick spokesperson confirmed to IM that an ongoing trial involving a 50-t payload Z50 was expected to be finalised in the June quarter of this year, “with the option to extend, should the KPIs not be met”. The machine was being tested at Turquoise Ridge, a gold mine operated under the Nevada Gold Mines company, owned 61.5% by Barrick and 38.5% by Newmont.

Based on this order, IM assumes the Turquoise Ridge trial was a success.

Alongside this reveal, Ager, talking up the company’s next-generation AutoMine® Concept vehicle recently revealed at the Innovation in Mining event, said the company currently had automation solutions at 59 sites across the mining industry. This compared favourably with solutions at 43 sites 18 months ago, and 19 sites back in 2016.

Sandvik to form new crushing and screening business area

Sandvik has decided to spin off its Crushing and Screening division into a new business area called Sandvik Rock Processing Solutions (SRP).

The reason for this structural change, which will happen as of January 1, 2021, is to further accelerate profitable growth within rock processing, based on Crushing and Screening addressing separate parts of the value chain and facing different competition to the other Sandvik Mining and Rock Technology divisions, the company said.

“Sandvik is market leading within rock processing and our Crushing and Screening division is a well-performing business with exciting growth opportunities,” Stefan Widing, President and CEO of Sandvik, said. “The business is today already operating quite independently from the rest of Sandvik Mining and Rock Technology, with its own manufacturing, sourcing and aftermarket. By establishing Rock Processing Solutions as a business area we will improve transparency and strengthen our growth ambitions within the area.”

In line with this move, Sandvik has appointed Anders Svensson, President of the Crushing and Screening division since 2016, to President of the business area Sandvik Rock Processing Solutions and a new member of the Sandvik Group Executive Management, as of 1 January 2021. Svensson joined Sandvik in 2008 and has, prior to his current position, had several different management positions within Sandvik and in Metso Minerals.

The crushing and screening business had, as a division within Sandvik Mining and Rock Technology, about SEK7.4 billion ($837 million) in sales and a 15.9% operating profit margin in 2019 with about 2,000 employees.

The Sandvik Mining and Rock Technology business area will continue to be led by Henrik Ager and will, as of 1 January 2021, change name to Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions (SMR), the company added.