Mine Master electric battery drill rig Face Master 1.7LE tested at KGHM Lubin mine
Mine Master has just recently released its new battery driven machines to be tested in underground conditions. The addition of a battery powered electric bolter and drill rig to the wide portfolio of underground mining machines produced by the company was a natural progression following current trends in mining, related to the broader use of clean technologies.
With new developments Mine Master work closely with KGHM, one of world’s biggest copper producers.The design of the electric machine was a response to the needs of this customer. The mines are going deeper, so the cost of ventilation is increasing with every meter. Battery electric solutions will help to reduce gas emissions, improve safety and ease the maintenance.
The Roof Master 1.8KE is undergoing testing at KGHM mine in Lubin. The machine is designed to work in galleries from 2,0m up to 5,8m height. It is equipped with a mechanized bolting mast for 9 bolts, 1.8m in height. The battery installed on board is 120kWh, sodium-nickel, are intrinsically maintenance free and have a long life and high reliability and the enclosure has a good thermal insulation. The battery cells are hermetically sealed and enclosed in a metallic box therefore, with exposure to hazardous materials being highly improbable, means that they are non-flammable.
It can be recharged by using the existing mine power network in the 500-1000V voltage range. For this purpose a battery charger is built on the machine chassis. Through regenerative braking the battery will even recharge as the rig is tramming downhill Charging the machine has no need for special equipment, or changed infrastructure, and no cycle times are disrupted, and provides for increased working time due to not having to refuel.
Overall the efficiency of Mine Master battery supplied machine has a far higher efficiency than diesel, so the effective energy put into the mining network is far better utilized than it is with diesel energy. The true benefit of battery technology comes from total overview costing reduction per meter advanced, taking not only the machines but also the services supply into account.
In addition, the machine is equipped with an ergonomically designed, closed, air-conditioned operator's cabin to add to the benefits of an already noise, and gas emission, reduced working shift for the operator.
The first comments from KGHM mine operators are enthusiastic. “During the driving process the machine is very quiet, the engine is hardly audible” – says Karol Ignatowicz from Lubin mine – ‘I am impressed, the cabin is very comfortable, so far everything works well”.
The Face Master 1.7LE is designed to drill blast holes between 41 mm and 76 mm in diameter and net length 3.2m in heights above 1.7m. The ergonomic, closed, air-conditioned cabin gives the operator very good visibility even in lowered positions. For better visibility during drilling it can also be raised.
The battery electric drive technology used, same as in the bolter, ensures significant noise as well as DPM, NOx and CO2 gas emission reduction, thus less need for ventilation, thus improving the operator’s comfort and safety. The telescopic boom’s design allows for the replacing of all wear slides in around 15 minutes without the need to disassemble the boom. This innovative, patented solution significantly improves the ease of maintenance and reduces the downtime of the machine significantly. Similarly, accessible electrical installation and hydraulics greatly improve MTTR.
More precise and thus more effective drilling can be conducted with the Face Master 1.7LE with an option of a drilling monitoring system. Mine Master can equip this underground drill rig with an easy and simple DMS system (Drilling Monitoring System) or with more advanced Feeder Guiding System (FGS). Both systems are well suited for drilling in a room and pillar mining.
Both the bolter and the rig provide for similar tramming distance and speed as their diesel equivalentwith an added benefit of zero emissions.