Tag Archives: Toyota

Thiess to use EODev GEH2 hydrogen fuel cell generator at New South Wales mine site

Toyota Australia has announced Thiess is set to be the first customer to take delivery of its locally-assembled EODev GEH2® hydrogen fuel cell stationary power generator.

Toyota Australia President and CEO, Matthew Callachor, made the announcement at a ceremony to celebrate the completion of the first GEH2 generator assembled at the company’s site at Altona in Victoria.

The 110 kVA GEH2 power generator has been designed by EODev (Energy Observer Developments), a France-based company specialised in hydrogen solutions, with the support of Toyota Motor Europe, and uses the same Toyota Fuel Cell System that powers the Mirai fuel cell electric vehicle.

In October 2023, Toyota Australia announced it was partnering with EODev to assemble the generators at Altona and make them available through its local retail partner Blue Diamond Machinery. It will also export units to New Zealand with Toyota New Zealand acting as the distributor in that market.

Speaking at the ceremony, Callachor said he was proud to see the completion of the first unit assembled at Altona and welcomed Thiess as the first customer.

“This is a great day for us at Toyota and all of our like-minded partners that have brought this important project to fruition as we aim to help drive towards a more sustainable future,” he said. “For Toyota, it’s part of our multi-pathway approach to decarbonisation by providing Australian customers with a range of technologies and mobility solutions, including power generation, that help reduce carbon emissions.

“We are firmly committed to growing, and investing in, the hydrogen economy here in Australia and I’m particularly pleased that Thiess is set to become our first customer for this innovative hydrogen fuel cell generator.

He added: “Toyota has long-standing shared history with Thiess that started when Sir Leslie Thiess imported the very first LandCruisers into Australia to work on the Snowy Hydro Scheme in 1958. Thiess then gained the Queensland and other state distribution rights from our parent company in Japan and was instrumental in building our brand here, particularly in rural and regional Australia.

“Now, we are working together again in a new era as we collectively aim to build a better future for all Australians.”

Thiess Group Executive – Assets, Autonomy & Digital, Ramesh Liyanage, said Thiess is planning to use the generator in its mining operations in New South Wales and was looking to add a second unit in the future as part of its own decarbonisation program.

“This year, as Thiess celebrates 90 years of operations, we are well-progressed in our journey to reduce carbon emissions from our operations, and we are determined to make a meaningful contribution towards decarbonising the world’s resources sector,” Liyanage said.

“We’re pleased at the prospect of being the first customer to take the locally-assembled hydrogen fuel cell generator unit and are excited to be partnering with Toyota once again, this time on cutting-edge technology that has the power to shape a more sustainable future for the world.”

Toyota has invested A$3.27 million ($2.12 million) in its facility at Altona to assemble up to 100 GEH2 generators over the next three years and aims to produce 28 in 2024 for customers largely in the mining, construction and events sectors.

The GEH2 power generator has been in production since 2021 at EODev’s manufacturing facility in France and is currently sold across several European markets, in North America, in the Middle East and in Australia.

Komatsu highlights interoperability strategy at mine automation forum

Mining automation enables key processes on mine sites such as controlling a machine remotely, automating multiple types of equipment across a fleet or implementing a completely autonomous fleet of haul trucks that can operate around the clock. To share its latest automation advancements, Komatsu recently hosted customers and distributors for an Automation Global User Forum at the company’s Arizona Proving Grounds (AZPG) facility in Tucson, Arizona, USA.

With an emphasis on Komatsu’s interoperability strategy, the event highlighted the company’s equipment automation and system technology roadmaps as well as customer-presented case studies illustrating the high value autonomous haulage has brought to their mining operations and their potential paths to an automated mine site, Komatsu said. Participants also got a first look at an Autonomous Light Vehicle (ALV) that Komatsu and Toyota are jointly developing – as was announced earlier this week.

Komatsu’s partnership with Toyota is reflective of the company’s interoperability strategy for its customers’ large mining fleets. Receiving directional commands from Komatsu’s Autonomous Haulage System (AHS), one or more Toyota ALVs can integrate with and operate alongside a Komatsu autonomous haulage fleet. Integration of this kind can help improve safety and productivity in an automated mine by reducing interactions with manually operated vehicles, it says.

The forum was attended by customers representing over 20 mine sites around the world, including mines focused on the production of copper, iron ore, metallurgical coal and oil sands.

Showcasing the use and the value cases for AHS, forum attendees shared how they have used the system in multiple ways to optimise for the specific needs of their mines, based on climate and terrain. Use cases included:

  • Mountaintop mining;
  • Mining in ice/snow;
  • High altitude mining; and
  • High temperature/desert mining.

Martin Cavassa, Manager, Automation Business Development for Komatsu, said: “Interoperability is the cornerstone of our mining automation strategy. This forum was an excellent opportunity to showcase our developments in automation as well as what we envision for the future of mining.”

Komatsu’s concept for the automated mine of the future includes a range of options from teleoperation and task-level automation to a fully autonomous mine, including automation of the following common mining tasks:

  • Loading;
  • Hauling;
  • Drilling;
  • Dozing;
  • Grading; and
  • Watering

Since Komatsu launched the world’s first commercial application of an AHS in 2008, the company has deployed over 650 trucks at 22 sites in five countries (as of May 2023). Combined, Komatsu’s AHS customers have moved over 6.2 billion metric tonnes of material, it says.

Mineral Resources, MEVCO agree on battery-electric Toyota HiLux utility vehicle deliveries

Mineral Resources says it will be the first miner in Western Australia to take delivery of Australia-engineered battery-electric Toyota HiLux utility vehicles for its mine site operations.

The investment, it says, is a demonstration of MinRes’ commitment to decarbonise its mining operations in Western Australia, which includes two of the world’s largest hard-rock lithium mines.

MinRes placed the order with mining industry vehicle supplier and global systems integrator MEVCO, which recently announced a partnership with SEA Electric to electrify Toyota HiLux and LandCruiser utes.

From its factory in Melbourne, SEA Electric is converting the vehicles from diesel-powered engines to all-electric using its SEA-Drive power-system.

The HiLux utility vehicles purchased by MinRes will be fitted with an 88 kWh battery that provides a range of up to 380 km and can be charged up to 80% in less than one hour, according to the company. The mine site-ready electric vehicles also produce no noise, fumes, heat or vibrations.

A demonstration model arrived in Perth, Western Australia, this week and MinRes is expected to take delivery of the first batch of electric vehicles in April.

MinRes, which is committed to net zero emissions by 2050, will use the electric utility vehicles at its various mine operations across Western Australia, including at the Koolyanobbing iron ore mine in the Yilgarn.

The addition of the electric utility vehicles comes two years after MinRes took delivery of the first all-electric light truck to roll off the SEA Electric production line.

MinRes is cutting emissions at its mining operations through a variety of technologies, including plans to transition road trains at its Onslow Iron project from diesel to electric.

At the Wonmunna iron ore project in the Pilbara, a 2.1 MW solar array and battery system is also being installed that will provide 30% of the site’s energy requirements.

MinRes Chief Executive Officer, Mining Services, Mike Grey, said: “MinRes has a plan to transition to a low-carbon future and cutting our reliance on diesel is central to achieving this goal. Our MEVCO electric utes are just one of the many ways we’re driving towards net zero and an exciting step in our decarbonisation journey.

MEVCO Chief Executive Officer, Matt Cahir, added: “While many companies talk about decarbonisation, MinRes is actually doing it. Partnering with one of the leading innovators in the mining industry is testimony to the MEVCO HiLux ute.

“MinRes is a company that is at the forefront of innovation and understands how that culture attracts and keeps the best mining talent in the industry. We are excited to be part of MinRes’ decarbonisation journey.”

FMG strengthens Western Australia hydrogen ties with ATCO agreement

ATCO and Fortescue Metals Group say they have signed an agreement to explore the potential to deploy hydrogen vehicle fuelling infrastructure in Western Australia.

FMG, only last month, agreed to team up with Anglo American, BHP and Hatch to form a Green Hydrogen Consortium looking at ways of using green sources of hydrogen to accelerate decarbonisation within their operations globally.

It also already has a partnership in place with Australia’s CSIRO on hydrogen technologies to support the development of new industries, create jobs and pave the way for low emissions export opportunities for Australia.

ATCO, meanwhile, says it has led the development of renewable hydrogen in Australia, and was the first company to generate hydrogen through electrolysis, powered only by solar.

ATCO and FMG will now collaborate to facilitate the construction and operation of a combined hydrogen production and refuelling facility at ATCO’s existing facility in Jandakot, Perth, with the possibility of wider deployment across the state.

The initial refuelling facility will provide ATCO, Fortescue and agreed third parties with the opportunity to refuel vehicles capable of utilising hydrogen as the primary fuel source, Atco says. This includes a fleet of Toyota Mirai fuel cell electric vehicles that have been made available by Toyota Motor Corp Australia.

“The project will serve as a showcase for hydrogen mobility in the state and support the transition to the next generation of zero-emission transport,” ATCO said.

ATCO’s Managing Director in Australia, Pat Creaghan, said ATCO is committed to expediting the global transition to a net-zero emissions balance in the future and sees a significant opportunity for hydrogen to play a role in that future.

“ATCO’s Clean Energy Innovation Hub has been generating and testing the use of renewable hydrogen for more than six months in gas blending and power applications. The hub provides a fantastic base from which to partner with Fortescue to contribute to Western Australia’s burgeoning renewable hydrogen industry.”

Building on the knowledge gained through the development and implementation of this hub, ATCO says it is currently conducting a feasibility study – with A$375,000 ($226,148) in funding from WA’s Renewable Hydrogen Fund – into the development of a commercial scale renewable hydrogen production plant.

Fortescue Chief Executive Officer, Elizabeth Gaines, said the miner was committed to working with other organisations to position Australia as a leader in the global hydrogen economy.

“As the world moves towards a lower carbon future, hydrogen has the potential to play a key role in the future energy mix and we want to ensure we remain at the forefront of Australia’s renewable hydrogen industry,” Gaines said.

“Identifying and establishing partnerships is critical to unlocking the future potential of hydrogen and we look forward to working with ATCO to capitalise on the economic opportunities associated with hydrogen and support the development of a competitive hydrogen industry.”

ATCO and Fortescue have sought funding under the State Government’s Renewable Hydrogen Fund to support the development of this infrastructure, and are awaiting the outcome of this submission.