At the Weda Bay nickel project in Central Halmahera, Indonesia, a fleet of Volvo articulated haulers and excavators are, the mining OEM says, offering excellent stability on soft ground for safety-conscious mining service contractor Samudera Mulia Abadi, while also delivering high uptime, productivity and fuel efficiency.
Samudera Mulia Abadi, headquartered in Manado, North Sulawesi, is one of Indonesia’s leading service contractors for the mining of gold and other minerals. The privately-owned company specialises in mine preparation – including infrastructure and site establishment, earthwork and land clearing, and project management – as well as excavation, loading and hauling in open-pit mines, and on- and off-road haulage.
The company’s latest endeavour is a five-year contract on a $30 billion project to extract nickel ore and transport it to the smelter at the Weda Bay nickel project in Central Halmahera. The main challenge here is the soft terrain in the pit and on the hauling roads.
“We try to remain efficient in carrying out any work in order to achieve the best return and there is no compromise on safety,” Willson Sastroamijoyo, Commissioner PT Samudera Mulia Abadi, says. “Every line of work must prioritise safety. Given the pit and hauling conditions, Volvo articulated haulers are the perfect choice as our production unit. Volvo excavators are also suitable to handle ore material like this.”
When the project began in August 2020, Samudera Mulia Abadi commissioned a fleet of 17 Volvo articulated haulers (six A40G and 11 A60H models) and 12 Volvo crawler excavators (two EC200D, five EC210D, two EC300DL and three EC480DL models), which will remain on site for as long as possible.
On delivery, dealer Indotruck Utama provided training to Samudera Mulia Abadi’s staff to promote safe operation and help them get the most value out of the machines. Since then, the dealer has continued to carry out refresher training as operator behaviour and safety procedure on site play an important part in increasing safety in eastern Indonesia.
The A60H is the largest Volvo articulated hauler with a 33.6 cu.m body volume and 55,000 kg payload capacity, while the A40G is the third largest, offering a 24 cu.m body volume and 39,000 kg payload capacity. On both models, the matched drivetrain, automatic drive combinations including 100% differential locks, all-terrain bogie, hydro-mechanical steering and active suspension ensure excellent traction and operator comfort on the most difficult terrain.
They are also designed for extreme durability and high fuel efficiency so that operators can reliably move more tonnes per hour at a lower cost, according to Volvo. The Hill Assist, Dump Support System and Rear View Camera, meanwhile, help to minimise the safety risk on site.
The Volvo crawler excavators, ranging from 20 t to 50 t in capacity, likewise offer excellent stability, fast cycle times and low fuel consumption, promoting safe, productive and profitable operation, Volvo said
“Our operators are happy to work with Volvo machines because they are comfortable and user-friendly. The quality, durability and comfort of the products have benefited us in many ways,” Sastroamijoyo says.
Volvo CE says: “Samudera Mulia Abadi works the machines hard – typically up to 22 h/d across two shifts, seven days a week – so machine availability is closely linked with productivity and profitability. It is crucial that they are durable enough to withstand such high utilisation and have simple service and maintenance requirements fulfilled by a responsive and reliable dealer. By always being ready to work, the machines help Samudera Mulia Abadi achieve its tonnes per hour and cost per tonne production targets.”
Because of this, the company has also relied on machinery from Volvo Construction Equipment on several other of its contracts over the last five years, including the Gag Island nickel project in West Papua and the Toka Tindung gold mine project in North Sulawesi.
At these two sites, Samudera Mulia Abadi operates a total of 116 Volvo machines, including 50 A40Fs, 17 A40Gs, five A45Gs and three A60H articulated haulers; one EC200D, eight EC210Bs, five EC210Ds, 12 EC350DLs, six EC480DLs, six EC950ELs crawler excavators; and one SD110 compactor.
“The overall machine performance is good and physical availability is above the target,” Sastroamijoyo says. “Of course, we are aware that the machines experience some occasional downtime, even if they are the toughest. The important thing is our how the dealer responds when these unfortunate situations occur.
“We have a good working relationship with our dealer Indotruck Utama. Their skilled service team speeds up the servicing time, while the consigned parts on site ensure high parts availability. Overall, the performance of the machines and the quality of product support increase our profitability.”