The Asia Miner

APR-JUN 2019

The ASIA Miner - Reporting Important Issues to Mining Companies in the Asia Pacific Region

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Page 45 of 71

VDMA 44 VDMA MINING SUPPLEMENT • 2019 Mining a dvan C es in s urfa C e Mining Optimizing operations to lower the cost per ton The Liebherr PR 776 dozer has become a trusted piece of auxiliary equipment. Liebherr introduces the B series excavators at bauma China. Nearly two-thirds of the world's salable minerals are extracted by open-cast mining methods. The pits at these surface mines are de- signed to effectively move waste and overburden to recover the ore or coal. The configurations differ from deep pits using benching op- erations for copper and gold to large area stripping for deposits, such as coal, iron ore and bauxite. Despite their differences, these mines have a lot in common. Safety is a primary concern. Lowering the cost per ton of material moved is another major objective. For both, today's mine operators are turning to technology to achieve these goals. Liebherr to Offer More Electric-powered Options Serving the mining market for as long as it has, Liebherr understands the cyclic demand swings and the impact of global trade tensions. De- spite these influences, the company has been steadily selling more surface mining equipment these days. Last year, they debuted the 100-ton T 236 haul truck and the PR 776 dozer, which is gaining in popularity, especially in Russia. This year, the company introduced the R 9100B & R 9150B line of hydraulic excavators at bauma China. "The B designation means that these machines have certain technical improvements when it comes to the engine, machine man- agement and hydraulic systems," said Dr. Joerg Lukowski, executive vice president for sales and marketing for Liebherr's mining equip- ment. "The Liebherr line of diggers includes nine models and they differ depending on when they were placed in the field. One is always a bit older than the others and we plan to steadily introduce more models into the industry." The company would like to upgrade all the three-digit model excavators to the four-digit designation during the next few years, Lukowski explained. With the new R 9100B & R 9150B, Liebherr has placed a priority on three areas: reliability, fuel efficiency and productivity. "We had some reliability issues with the R 9100 and R 9150 ex- cavators when they were launched," Lukowski said. "We made several improvements. Among other things, we added a new Liebherr engine. We were sure from the beginning that there was huge potential in using our engines, but we had to overcome some technical challenges, which we have now resolved. Customer feedback confirms that the engines are now performing excel- lent. We're building a lot of engines by the way." Last year, Li- ebherr built 10,000 engines — obviously not all of those were for mining. Liebherr established an engine-building plant in Colmar, France. Not far from the factory where they currently build the exca- vators and the T 236 haul truck. "We will offer our own engine in addi- tion to those available from third-party providers for the mining-class shovels, which require the bigger engines," Lukowski said. "Now that the Liebherr engines have logged some hours, we're starting to see superior performance and extended life. These new Liebherr engines are extremely fuel efficient." The Liebherr engines are in operation for many years in our earth- moving machines and on the smaller mining excavators (R 9100B & R 9150B). And the first R 9400 with a Liebherr engine will head to Aus- tralia soon. "That machine was field-tested here in Europe," Lukowski said. "We are gradually introducing the engines by machine type. We will also continue to work with other engine OEMs with whom we have long-term relationships." Lukowski views the situation as a friendly competition where Liebherr can learn from them and vice versa. Ulti- mately, however, the engine is the customer's decision. Productivity is an extremely important consideration for hydraulic excavators. The standard bucket capacity for the R 9100B has been increased to 7.5 m 3 and the R 9150B now has an 8.8-m 3 bucket and, with a special attachment, it can be increased to 9.6 m 3 . Lukowski sees huge potential for electrification and that in- cludes the excavators. "Mining class excavators are stable op- erators that load a lot of material, but they don't normally move a lot," Lukowski said. "The upside would be the electric engine. The drawback would be the electric cable, which impacts mobility unless a clever system is developed for managing it." In the next three to four years, Liebherr plans to offer electrically powered models for all the excavators from the R 9150 up to R 9800. What drives the forwarding thinking at Liebherr today is digi- talization. Liebherr's TroubleShoot Advisor is becoming more and more powerful, Lukowski explained. "We are collecting a lot of data from the machines in the field related to downtime events," Lukowski said. "We analyze those events with the team and then

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