Canada’s MacLean Engineering signed an agreement with Germany’s GHH Fahrzeuge GmbH for mutual product sales and support, leveraging each company’s respective branch footprints and mining application knowledge. The partnership was announced February 21 at a ribbon-cutting event held at MacLean’s newest manufacturing plant — the first outside of Canada, a 5,600-m2 facility in Querétaro, Mexico.
The initial focus of the strategic partnership will be on the North American, Eastern European and Central Asian mining, tunneling and construction markets. This approach will build on the existing MacLean platform of field service and sales support in Canada, the U.S. and Mexico. It will allow mining and tunneling operations in these countries to immediately benefit from a MacLean product line integration of the GHH load and haul product offering, while at the same time building off of GHH’s extensive branch network in Russia, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and India to support the introduction of MacLean mining vehicles into those regions.
“The combination of the MacLean and GHH product lines is a significant turning point for both companies, but in the context of a global industry that is increasingly looking to reduce the complexity of supply chains to achieve better maintenance, total cost of ownership, safety and productivity outcomes, it simply makes good sense,” MacLean President Kevin MacLean said.
“We’re very optimistic about the prospects of combining forces with a company like GHH that has a stellar and time-tested reputation for design quality, mining know-how, and innovation that works in the challenging underground environment — just like MacLean.”
“GHH is continuously striving to improve our customer support through increasing our product and support offering,” CEO of GHH Dr. Jan Petzold said. “Partnering with key, well-established companies in critical markets, gives us ‘feet on the ground’ providing customers with effective and efficient solutions to all mining and tunneling projects.”
MacLean manufactures underground mining mobile equipment in the ground support, ore flow and utility vehicle product categories. GHH has a line of LHDs and trucks purpose-designed for the rigors of underground mining. GHH’s offering also includes narrow-vein loaders and specialized super low-profile vehicles.
Australia’s Roy Hill to Automate
Mining Haul Truck Fleet
Epiroc signed a contract with Roy Hill to deliver a fully automated haul truck solution for its iron ore mining operation in Western Australia. Epiroc, in partnership with automation specialist ASI Mining, will convert Roy Hill’s haul trucks from manned to autonomous use. Epiroc and ASI Mining will deliver a safe and interoperable solution for Roy Hill’s mixed truck fleet, with an ability to expand to other mining vehicle types and manufacturers, and capability to integrate with existing Roy Hill systems. Epiroc and ASI Mining will also be working closely with Roy Hill and its partners Hitachi and Wenco on truck conversion and integration of the Wenco fleet management system.
“Epiroc is proud to collaborate with Roy Hill, ASI Mining and other partners to automate Roy Hill’s haul truck fleet, boosting safety and productivity for a crucial aspect of its mining operation,” Epiroc Senior Executive Vice President of Mining and Infrastructure Helena Hedblom said. “This is a very strong example of how automation will take a mining company’s operation to the next level.”
“Roy Hill is well-positioned to transition to automation,” Roy Hill CEO Barry Fitzgerald said. “Our teams on site and in our Remote Operations Centre (ROC) in Perth have demonstrated a clear capacity to deliver complex projects, sustainable change and operational excellence with the recent success of our autonomous drill program and fleet optimization initiatives. Now is the right time to bring the combined expertise of Roy Hill, Epiroc, ASI Mining and Wenco together to convert our haul truck fleet.
“Care is one of our core values, with safety at the heart of everything we do,” Fitzgerald said. “Roy Hill’s Smart Mine program is driving innovation across our business, and the automation of our haulage fleet is central to delivering safety and production improvements.”
The project will see a phased implementation, with testing and production verification of up to eight trucks undertaken in the initial phase prior to the second phase of full fleet expansion from mid-2021.
Roy Hill is an iron ore mining project in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. Its ROC in Perth provides end-to-end integration of operations.
U.S.-based ASI Mining provides technology solutions for the autonomous operation of mining vehicles. Epiroc announced in October 2018 that it had acquired 34% of ASI Mining.
Austin Partners With ETT
Australian-based Austin Engineering has signed a partnership agreement with South Africa’s ETT to market and support their combined mining-oriented product ranges throughout Africa.
The agreement will bring together two of the southern hemisphere’s largest mining equipment design and manufacturing entities.
With headquarters in Brisbane, Austin Engineering has more than 50 years of experience in engineering and manufacturing equipment for the mining industry with operations in Australia, Asia, North and South America, and now South Africa.
“We are looking forward to growing this partnership,” Austin Engineering Managing Director Peter Forsyth said. “It gives both companies a solid and reliable platform from which to offer customers, throughout the continent, proven world-class products backed up by world-class service.”
ETT, a privately-owned South African company based in Richards Bay, with product already distributed in more than 20 countries around the world, celebrates 25 years of engineering excellence this year.
ETT Managing Director Andre McDuling said, “ETT’s manufacturing and innovative record as well as our strong presence and product supply into Africa is one of the key reasons why this partnership was formed. We are confident that the industry is ready for a partnership like this that will provide the widest range of mining attachments and support products in the world.”
Both companies are well-established and acknowledged globally for their unique, engineered mining equipment. The combined product range of the new partnership will include customized dump truck bodies, water trucks, diesel lube trucks, gooseneck-equipped recovery vehicles, tire handlers, lowbed off-road trailers and excavator buckets.
Modular Opens Customer Experience Center
Modular Mining, a leader in computer-based mine management solutions, unveiled its new Customer Experience Center (CEC) during a ribbon cutting ceremony in late January. Located in the company’s corporate headquarters in Tucson, Arizona, USA, the CEC’s opening coincides with Modular Mining’s 40th anniversary.
“Our new Customer Experience Center is designed to showcase how mine management solutions can improve the safety, efficiency, and productivity of mining operations, and help our customers do so sustainably,” President and CEO Jorge Mascena said. “Today’s announcement marks our third major renovation project in six years at this facility. Tucson is evolving into a key mining technology hub, and this expansion demonstrates our commitment to leading this transformation as a long-term member of this community.”
Established in Tucson in 1979, Modular Mining advanced technology for the open-pit mining industry with the development of the DISPATCH Fleet Management System. It was the first of its kind in the industry and served as the springboard for further innovation, including the ProVision High-Precision Machine Guidance system, the MineCare Maintenance Management system, and others.