Major capital expenditure is often investors’ main concern when deciding whether to start a mining operation. Many questions need to be taken into consideration – especially those that have financial implications. These include: What roads need building? What fixed plant is needed? How many trucks are required to transport ore? Are rail tracks necessary to get the extracted minerals to port?
An essential piece of equipment for consideration is MMD’s Sizer stations, which offer reduced operating costs. Big mining enterprises traditionally opt for fixed plant installations, especially if the forward planners and others can see that life-of-mine expectations are measured in decades, not years. Historically this made sense if a mine would be around for such a long time as the return on investment (ROI) would play out over this period.
However, there are many times when mobile plant is eminently a more suitable match. This could be for a variety of reasons. Possibly the lifespan of the mine might not warrant intensive initial capital spend without seeing any returns. It could be that the location of the mine is so remote that the infrastructure costs of setting up a permanent plant or transporting equipment would make the operation economically unviable. Maybe material processing needs to be conducted close to where the ore is being extracted, as the mine develops: fixed plant relocation or increasing haulage costs would prove cumbersome.
Finally, there could be the issue of a mine’s main deposits being at some distance from each other, thus requiring a mobile solution.
Thankfully, specialist mining plant companies like MMD have perfected mobile plant solutions.
MMD offer a distinct range of fully mobile and semi-mobile units, capable of handling up to 10,000 TPH. These solutions can meet the expectations of most mining operations that don’t want a heavy capital spend or high OPEX costs, or are looking to mine in hard to access, remote areas.
At the smaller end of the scale, MMD offer a trailer-mounted sizing station. As the name suggests, this unit is transported easily to site by truck, with minimal setup time or relocation time, enabling sites to begin working almost immediately.
It offers all the functionality of fixed plant, including the ability to process a range of materials via a primary, secondary or tertiary installed Sizer. Various tooth designs and configurations are available to suit each application. A hydraulic folding conveyor and hydraulic dolly legs facilitate easier road network transportation. Controls can be located on board the rig or wirelessly for remote control.
Another option is the company’s FMS 500 rig: track or skid-mounted and modular in construction, the unit can be constructed to a client’s specifications. It is more robust than the trailer-mounted option, has a low cost setup, and can be delivered into remote locations. The track-mounted unit can operate anywhere a shovel can go.
Both these rigs are specifically designed for lower tonnage applications, typically from 300 TPH to 2,000 TPH. In keeping with MMD’s commitment to greener mining, the units have minimal environmental impact with virtually no ground work required, and utilise the latest motor technology for lower energy costs.
When feeding the Sizer, it is possible to use a loader, excavator or conveyor feed which means large volumes of ore can be processed where and when required.
MMD’s fully mobile and semi-mobile sizing units, as well as being the more cost-effective CAPEX option for investors, deliver better OPEX costs for mine operations whilst providing unparalleled flexibility. Unlike traditional fixed plant, which often takes extended time to set up correctly, MMD’s mobile equipment can start working as soon as it arrives on site.