Sandvik won an order from BHP for 10 battery-electric loaders and one electric-tethered loader for the Jansen potash project in Saskatchewan, Canada. Delivery of the equipment is scheduled to begin in 2023 and continue through 2025.

BHP said the purchase aligns with the company’s sustainability efforts.

“Electric mining equipment is essential to meeting our goals to reduce emissions, improve productivity and, most importantly, protect the health of our employees underground,” BHP Potash President Simon Thomas said. “Jansen will have the lowest carbon emissions per ton of product produced compared to any potash mine operating today in Saskatchewan.”

Sandvik said the equipment will deliver the desired results.

“We are excited to partner with BHP and proud to contribute to the sustainability and productivity of this pro-
ject,” said Alex Willows, business line manager, Sandvik Canada. “Sandvik electric loaders have been designed to best utilize the innovative technology of its battery pack and electric driveline, and maximize the capabilities of our battery technology.”

With an expected production capacity of 4.35 million metric tons per year, Jansen could become the largest potash mine in the world. It is expected to operate up to 100 years. Production will begin there in 2027.

Separately, Sandvik acquired Akkurate, a battery solutions supplier. The company will become part of Load and Haul, a division within Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions.

Sandvik said the move reflected the company’s priority to develop and supply top-tier electric equipment.

“I am very pleased that we continue to execute on our shift to growth strategy,” CEO Stefan Widing said. “Strengthening our position within electrification is one of the key priorities within Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions.”

Akkurate is a 12-person team founded in 2016 by members of Nokia/Microsoft’s battery research and development unit. Its head office and battery laboratory is in Kaarina, Finland, close to Sandvik’s Turku facility.