Epiroc racks up orders for battery-powered equipment

The newly arrived Scooptram ST14 Battery and Minetruck MT42 Battery at Agnico Eagle's Kittilä mine. Image: Epiroc

Epiroc has won orders for its new generation battery-electric mining equipment in Australia, underscoring the original equipment manufacturer’s (OEM) growth in the region.

The Boltec rock bolting rig, Boomer face drilling rig, Scooptram loader and Minetruck hauler have all been received by companies in 2019, less than a year after Epiroc launched its latest battery electric equipment line.

Internationally, multinational gold producer Agnico Eagle Mines has also ordered Epiroc’s Boltec E Battery rig for its Kittilä mine in Finland.

Agnico executed the order after testing several Epiroc battery-powered machines at Kittilä. The tests are part of Agnico’s sustainable intelligent mining systems (SIMS) project.

The latest Boltec E Battery rig order will join a Boomer E2 Battery that has been operating for several months.

The Minetruck MT42 Battery and Scooptram ST14 Battery have been pioneers for the battery line up at Kittilä since August.

“Operator feedback has been positive and we are looking forward to expand our fleet with more electrical powered equipment in the near future,” Agnico Eagle Mines production manager Jari Kolehmainen said.

“Therefore we are also very excited to be testing the battery powered mine truck and loader. These tests are giving us the confidence to be a successful early adopter of this new and exciting technology.”

Electric machines deliver benefits that are especially significant for underground operations, where mining companies traditionally must invest heavily in ventilation to air out the diesel fume, according to Epiroc.

These benefits also include lower total cost of operation and high productivity.

Epiroc senior executive vice president mining and infrastructure Helena Hedblom said more and more mining companies were realising the significant benefits that come with using electric machines instead of diesel.

“The technology is now well established. … We are proud to spearhead the mining industry’s drive toward a fossil-free future,” Hedblom said.

Epiroc launched its first battery electric machines in 2016 and aims to offer a complete fleet of underground battery-electric models by 2025.

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