Epiroc’s SmartROC T35 surface drill rig, which Skanska will field test in a battery-electric version. (Photo: Epiroc)

Epiroc has agreed with Swedish construction company Skanska to field test the world’s first battery-electric drill rig for surface operations. The trial is a milestone in the journey toward zero-emission drilling in surface mines and quarries around the world.

Skanska will test the rig at a quarry near Stockholm, Sweden. The machine, manufactured in Örebro, Sweden, will arrive at the quarry in September. Later, Epiroc will announce when the SmartROC T35 E will be available on the market.

“Epiroc has bold sustainability targets in place for the year 2030,” Epiroc President and CEO Helena Hedblom said. “With the SmartROC T35 E, we are taking a large step toward reaching our promise to offer a full range of emissions-free products for quarries and large construction applications.”

Epiroc is taking a major step with the inaugural battery-powered drill rig for surface operations. The design of the rig is based on Epiroc’s well-proven SmartROC T35 surface drill rig. Using Epiroc’s vast experience from the development of the underground battery rigs, the SmartROC T35 E is designed to enhance the environmental standards of quarries and larger construction sites. In addition to zero emissions in operations, the rig comes with a range of smart features, options and enhanced automation solutions for optimal safety, reliability and performance, according to the company.

“A milestone has been reached and a new opportunity has come to reduce our climate impact,” said Johan Eliasson, project manager, Skanska Industrial Solutions AB. “I am very happy about the long collaboration between Epiroc and Skanska, and it is exciting to be able to do this project together. Both companies have set bold environmental goals – this project really takes a great step toward Skanska´s goal of being completely climate neutral by 2045, which is an important part of our promise to build a better society.”

Eprioc said customers’ benefits include emissions-free operations, lower noise pollution and vibrations, and higher productivity. The machines play a vital role in Epiroc’s sustainability goals for 2030, which include halving the CO2e emissions in operations and from sold products.

Epiroc will offer its complete fleet of underground mining equipment as battery-electric versions by 2025, and its full fleet for surface operations as battery-powered versions by 2030.