Atlas Copco is launching the new generation Mobile Miner product line, the next step in the evolution of mechanical rock excavation.
The Mobile Miner product line offers a continuous hard rock mining system which enables faster advance rates, easier scheduling and safer work environment than traditional methods. It currently comprises three different product models.
The company has been developing the product line in close cooperation with global mining corporations with the goal to move towards a continuous mining system based on mechanical rock cutting.
“We use a well-known technique, packaged in a small and flexible machine,” Mikael Ramstrom, director of mechanical rock excavation at Atlas Copco, said.
“We are confident that this will be a success that could change the mining industry.”
The biggest problem with mining hard rock is that it is difficult to break mechanically and using the traditional drill and blast method is a slow start and stop process. The mine has to be evacuated before a blast, and various gases are created by the explosion. When using mechanical rock excavation based on soft rock pics, the cutting parts wear down quickly, advance rates are low and energy consumption is high.
Atlas Copco is now introducing steel disc cutter technology to the mining industry, a technology used and proven in civil construction industry for a long time.
“With the new generation Mobile Miner, the rock cutting process is continuous and predictable which makes planning and scheduling much easier – a critical factor for the mining industry to become more cost efficient and predictable in their operations,” Johnny Lyly, global product manager for Mobile Miner at Atlas Copco, said.
One important aspect of the Mobile Miner is safety for the operators. The system does less damage to the surrounding rock and reduces the risk of fall of ground. Being automated and remotely controlled also means operators can be removed from hazardous areas of the mine. In that way, this kind of innovation and modernisation improves both safety and the long-time performance of a mine.