Employing a team of chemists and engineers, Fenner Dunlop has ensured the Next Generation Ultra Tuff cover compound meets the demands for its customer base.
Fenner Dunlop takes an uncompromising approach to improving its Ultra Tuff abrasion resistant compound with every new generation that is released to the marketplace.
The Next Generation Ultra Tuff, which Fenner Dunlop launched in November 2019, is no exception and has involved in-house chemists, operations personnel and engineers during the development process.
Constantly raising the standard of premium products already established in the market, rather than starting from scratch to improve the design and manufacture, is a key reason why Fenner Dunlop has made Ultra Tuff a recognised name in the iron ore and related industries.
Fenner Dunlop general manager, sales and marketing Trevor Svenson says the company takes pride in constantly improving the abrasion resistance of the Ultra Tuff compound.
“The Ultra Tuff compound development has always had abrasion resistance front of mind, and the main driver was to develop it for the next generation without compromising the other characteristics of the belt performance when placed into operation,” Svenson says.
“We didn’t want to give up the impact resistance and we didn’t want to trade off on the elongation of the product whislt improving the abrasion resistance.”
Ultra Tuff has been available for seven years but Fenner Dunlop has not grown complacent with the standard of the belt compound’s abrasion resistance.
Fenner Dunlop’s commitment to the product is highlighted by the number of key stakeholders from the company and customer base that are involved in the products ongoing development.
Svenson says the product has been independently tested by TUNRA, with the results clearly showing a step change in abrasion resistance, taking the product to the next level.
“As it has been independently tested and verified, we are confident that it is the benchmark for abrasion resistance in the Australian mining industry,” Svenson says.
Mine sites, from iron ore, hard rock mines to coal operations, require abrasion resistant compounds to reduce belt wear for conveying material.
One of Ultra Tuff’s latest improvements is ensuring a longer belt life, extending the time between belt changes and reducing shutdown intervals.
“The high abrasion resistance compound is suitable for short cycle high wear applications. For example, ship loading applications for multiple commodities are prime candidates for the Next Generation Ultra Tuff compound.
Fenner Dunlop’s Western Australian-based Tier 1 mining customers have been among the first to adopt the product, as it is ideally suiting to their highy abrasive mining conditions.
“This product development along with many Fenner Dunlop products was based on feedback from the client in terms of what they’re looking for out of their belts and conveyor systems,” Svenson says.
Fenner Dunlop prioritises designing and manufacturing its products in Australia, with the Next Generation Ultra Tuff being produced locally at its state-of-the-art Kwinana manufacturing facility in Western Australian.
Svenson believes Fenner Dunlop’s locally-based team is another contributing factor to the success of Ultra Tuff, as it focusses on developing innovative products based on what the market is asking for and always remaining close to the customer base to support the product is central to Fenner Dunlop’s way of doing business.
“We’ve been working with a number of clients on this product for a number of years,” Svenson says. “Over the years they’ve seen different iterations of the product and have worked with and supported Fenenr Dunlop through trials in mining applications.”
It’s not just the chemists, engineers and designers that are based locally to develop the product; Fenner Dunlop has 20 branches Australia-wide, located in key mining regions to support its clients.
In true Fenner Dunlop style, even though the Next Generation Ultra Tuff is only a recent release, the local team is already working on how to improve the abrasion resistance of this compound.
“At Fenner Dunlop we continue to push the boundaries in terms of product development backed by a support network of 20 branches nationally and 1000 employees in Australia,” Svenson concludes.
This article also appears in the February edition of Australian Mining.