Atlas Copco launches new underground mining truck

Atlas Copco has given Australian miners a sneak peek at its latest underground haul truck, the MT65, ahead of its official unveiling at MINExpo.

It showcased the machine – known as Julia – in a special event in East Perth.

The machine has been developed to provide an extra five tonnes of capacity per load, and designed with a swathe of new and improved features.

“The MT65 is based on years of knowledge from the successful MT6020,” Atlas Copco said.

“The built in reliability combined with higher capacity and high ramp speed leads to dramatically increased productivity.

“To improve energy efficiency we have reduced fuel consumption and decreased running costs.

“It’s the strongest, smartest, and most productive truck we’ve ever put to use in operations.”

The truck has been tested to its limits, undergoing field trials in Western Australia, at St Barbara’s Gwalia mine, which runs more than 1620 metres deep, or a ten kilometre haul distance.

According to Atlas Copco, these load studies – carried out with contractor Byrnecut – have seen a serious increase in productivity performance compared to the existing fleet of Atlas Copco MT6020 underground haul trucks over the three month, 2000 hour long trial, where tonnes per kilometre, speed on grades, and payload capacities were tested.

Wayne Symes, the Atlas Copco business line manager for underground, said trials had recorded a 10 per cent increase in carrying capacity and lower fuel usage than the MT6020

Byrnecut operator Steve Nascivera, who had been testing one of the machines (dubbed Sofia), said he “found it to be very user friendly, and very comfortable inside the cab [but] the biggest advantage is the sheer amount of dirt that we’re bringing up each run”.

“Our average is between 63 and 65 tonne,” he said, with Atlas Copco stating it is able to dump these loads in around 13 seconds.

The dump box has a maximum 65 tonne haulage capacity, and is engineered for high productivity and reliable performance, Atlas Copco said, adding it has optimised angles and wear resistant steel which enables longer operational life and easier release of material.

The load weighing system presents information directly to the operators on the filling process, and to the outside via status beacon lights, allowing operators to maximise filling and reduce overload.

The MT65 is also ready for the next stage of mining, and has been built to be automation ready, utilising Atlas Copco’s Rig Control System (RCS), and its Certiq telematics solution, which provide machine data and information in an intuitive easy to use HMI.

Safety has also been in focus, with an ISO ROPS and FOPS certified cabin that has sound levels below 80 decibels.

Cameras are located on the front and the rear of the vehicle to increase visibility and safety of those around the vehicle.

An improved front axle suspension increases driver comfort, and is reportedly even better than on the MT6020 model.

Maintenance is a key component in its design.

The truck has “best serviceability in the segment with easily accessible service points and features to ease operation,” Atlas Copco said, with all daily checks reach from ground level.

It is also equipped with a new tyre monitoring system.

“The main filters are collected and accessible in the smart service bay.”

The truck weighs approximately 46.3 tonnes, and measures 2.785 metres in height, has a width of 3.5 metres, and is 11.021 metres long.

It is driven by a Cummins QSK19 EPA Tier 2 engine, with a power rating of 567kW, and has a fuel tank capacity of 844 litres.

According to Atlas Copco, orders were booked for the truck before it was even unveiled.


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