Metso breaks new ground with truck body

The equipment manufacturer moved into a new product area and strengthened an emerging crusher range with its latest releases at Bauma in Munich last month.

Metso used its presence at Bauma 2019 to reveal a number of innovative solutions for mines and quarries that reinforce its focus on increasing productivity and driving down costs for its clients.

Two new products stood out in particular, including what Metso believes is a ground-breaking innovation for off-highway trucks – the Metso Truck Body.

Metso also expanded its Multi-Action cone crusher range, with the addition of the MX3, which is said to bring improved productivity and lower operating costs to mid-sized operations.

Australian Mining examines both of the solutions.

Metso Truck Body

Metso has extended its range of solutions to the mining and aggregates industries with the launch of the Metso Truck Body.

The truck body has been designed to combine the benefits of rubber and high structural strength steel to help mines and quarries “haul more with less”.

For several decades Metso has supplied rubber lining for haul trucks that have successfully reduced maintenance needs and improved the work environment for drivers.

The benefits of Metso’s rubber linings have included up to six times more wear life compared to traditional steel lining, a reduction in noise of up to 50 per cent, and 97 per cent less vibration.

Metso’s truck body takes this concept to another level by combining the wear protection and working environment benefits of rubber with the payload maximising abilities of a lightweight body.

The company has taken note of an industry trend towards using lightweight bodies on haul trucks when developing the innovative product, according to vice president, wear lining and screening solutions, mining consumables, Lars Skoog.

“I think this opened our eyes and made us start to understand that if we do our homework right and figure out how to absorb energy, then we can take this a step further,” Skoog explains during the Bauma launch.

“We are here now and we feel there is a new space in the market with this product.”

Hauling is one of the most cost-intensive components at a typical mine or quarry’s operations due to the fuel, labour and maintenance involved. At the same time, haul trucks are required to carry as much payload as possible to ensure cost efficiency.

Metso set out to tackle these demands by designing a truck body that requires minimal maintenance while also maximising payload.

The truck body has been developed as a specialised lightweight, rubber-lined alternative to those supplied by major off-highway truck manufacturers (OEMs).

Metso’s elastic rubber absorbs the energy of every impact, preventing it from reaching the frame and allowing for a lighter-than-usual, high structural strength steel frame beneath the rubber.

This combination of features means the body can absorb maximum shock at the lowest possible weight.

“What we have understood and what experience has taught us is the actual amount of energy absorption that the rubber can take,” Skoog says. “We have done a lot of research in order to understand how much that actually is.  The application of this knowledge has allowed us to use less high-strength steel.”

“Utilising the combination of high-strength steel with the energy absorbing rubber lining enables us to shave off weight in the steel structure.”

The truck body builds off Metso’s expertise with rubber linings.

 

Metso claims that one of its typical truck bodies has up to six times the wear life, with 20 to 30 per cent lower weight than a traditional steel-lined truck body. Depending on the application, this translates into a payload increase of several tonnes.

Skoog says many mining companies prefer lightweight truck bodies because they carry a higher payload. However, the problem with traditional lightweight bodies is a lack of durability.

“They often have to be replaced or repaired every one-to-two years, which gets expensive,” Skoog says.

The Metso Truck Body provides an unprecedented solution for the mining industry that is both light and durable, Skoog adds.

“The rubber lining and high structural strength steel frame have been engineered in a seamless process, utilising the best qualities of both materials,” he says.

Metso is offering several lining options to ensure application-specific fit, even in operations that struggle with problems such as carry-back.

Responsible for the product locally, Australian screen media and lining product manager – Peter Lundberg says that preparations for the commercialisation of the product are under way in Australia.

“Our first application of the new truck body at a Finnish mine are already delivering great results. At Bauma we booked orders for two more bodies for a mine site in Sweden. We will shortly commence our first Australian field trial of the product,” Lundberg says.

Metso MX3

Metso also unveiled MX3 at Bauma, the latest addition to its Multi-Action cone crusher family.

MX3 is designed by Metso to bring improved productivity and lower operating costs to mid-sized quarry operations. It follows the 2017 launch of MX4 – the first model of the MX cone crusher series.

Metso developed MX4 to redefine cone crusher performance with claims of previously unimagined efficiency, wear parts utilisation, safety and automation.

According to Metso representatives, around 50 MX4 crushers have been sold worldwide, with some already operating successfully at Australian quarries.

Metso’s Australian vice president – aggregates Shaun Fanning says quarry operators in Australia are already experiencing the benefits of the company’s unique Multi-Action technology.

“Our customers are getting some remarkable results with MX4. Some of our industry’s major players have really embraced this unique technology, we currently have several MX4 crushers in operation and being commissioned,” Fanning says.

The newly-released MX3 is a scaled down version of the MX4, sharing the same design principles and technology.

Like the MX4, it delivers very high reduction ratios with a refined, in-spec end product shape and consistency critical in aggregate applications.

The machine’s engineering team says MX cone crushers are designed with one objective in mind – to make the machine owner’s business more profitable than ever before.

Metso states that MX3 has the potential to reduce the total cost of ownership while supercharging productivity.

Fanning says the company’s patented Multi-Action technology is an innovative way to automatically optimise crusher operation.

MX crushers can simultaneously adjust their settings with a rotating bowl above their cavity and a hydraulic piston inside the machine’s fixed shaft.

Dynamic setting adjustments can be made when the crusher is operating under full load conditions without the need to stop production.

Both rotating bowl and piston adjustments are fully automated, so no human intervention is required. The MX series also provides a maximised tramp release distance, delivering high levels of protection against uncrushable objects and overloading.

Metso claims the MX series is the most cost-efficient crusher range on the market. It delivers cost savings of 10 per cent or more compared with traditional cone crushers, according to Metso.

Savings in wear components, coupled with effective and continuous crushing action, provide a valuable starting point to bring down the cost per tonne.

Metso also claims the uptime of MX crushers is significantly higher than traditional cone crushers. The MX’s Multi-Action design allows dynamic setting adjustment and wear compensation using a high-pressure hydraulic piston, minimising interruptions to production.

The MX3 crusher adds to the MX4 already released by Metso.

 

MX crushers are designed for the most challenging operating conditions with very hard and abrasive material. From the start, Metso engineered the MX series to minimise downtime and allow 24/7 crushing in the harshest applications.

Fanning says the MX series delivers highly effective wear parts utilisation rates, with up to 25 per cent longer liner life achievable compared to conventional crushers.

Optimal cavity design, stroke direction and an effectively distributed crushing action are combined to provide a highly optimised rock on rock crushing motion.

Together with the machine’s Multi-Action technology, this results in extended intervals between maintenance and higher production rates. Quality characteristics of all sized end product fractions stay consistent throughout the lifetime of the wear parts.

The smart optimisation of Metso’s Multi-Action technology is the key to reaching the desired end product shape and particle size distribution while eliminating waste.

Metso included a pre-launch field testing period as part of its MX3 development program. French aggregate producer Durance Granulats has been testing a pre-production prototype of the MX3 along with a new MX4 at its Peyrolles quarry since April 2018.

Durance Granulats director of operations Mathieu Kasprzak says that he is very satisfied with the performance of both machines. The MX4 is achieving the company’s production targets while delivering around 12 per cent in energy sayings compared with the machine that it replaced.

Commenting on the Durance Granulats experience and feedback from Australian MX crusher users, Fanning says, “Our prospective customers can be confident that our new machines already have a proven track record in some really challenging applications.”

This article also appears in the June edition of Australian Mining. 

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