Komatsu selects ABB for open-pit shovel milestone

Image: ABB

Komatsu has placed its 100th AC multidrive order for open-pit shovels from ABB, joining over 90 ABB AC drives already in operation on the equipment manufacturer’s customer mine sites around the world.

ABB will provide Komatsu with the ACS880 multidrive line-up with back-to-back installation, including a common base frame and cabinet roof with back-to-back installation.

The ACS880 multidrive, with direct torque control (DTC), delivers fast dynamic performance at low motor speeds and prevents premature ageing of power components, ABB said in a statement.

The multidrive comprises one insulated-gate bipolar transistor (IGBT) supply unit and modified with a non-standard direct unit (DC) charging circuit and up to eight motor inverter drives, operating the shovel at low voltage AC. The use of individual motor inverters for all drives increases production uptime, according to ABB.

“Using high efficiency motors, AC technology provides better overall drive train efficiency than conventional DC applications,” ABB product manager shovel and dragline Boris Rathmann said.

“Due to the extreme conditions in open-pit mining, the challenge is to deliver a solution that operates reliably 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year and provides optimum power for the load cycle requirements of the shovel.

“This latest order comes 15 years after the company’s first order for ABB drive technology to support P&H shovels and takes our fleet of ABB AC drives for shovels to a milestone figure of 100.”

The joint technology development partnership between Komatsu and ABB has been cultivated over 50 years, according to Komatsu product director for shovels Patrick Singleton.

This period has seen the melding of “best-in-class” technology, available at the time, up to and including the joint development and integration of AC motors and drives into electric mining shovels beginning in 2007 with the 4100C Boss AC.

ABB AC drives for open-pit shovels, meanwhile, are modified to withstand shock and vibrations for shovel reliability and productivity on large scale mine sites.

The Swiss-Swedish company, known for its ABB Ability portfolio of digitally-enabled industry solutions, recently delivered AC drives for mining for the largest type of shovel available on the market P&H 4800XPC, which will go into operation later this year.

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