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Atlas Copco's Minetruck MT6020 continues to break productivity records


With haulage costs representing one of the most crucial items on the miner's balance sheet, Atlas Copco's Minetruck MT6020 stands out as the productivity winner.

Haulage efficiency is a tough nut to crack in underground mining. Trucks need to be powerful enough to carry heavy loads for long periods and often over long distances, yet also compact and robust to access the most challenging of ramps.

Atlas Copco's Minetruck MT6020 delivers on both counts and continues to break records for productivity and cost-efficiency.

This success is largely thanks to the vehicle's pay-load of 60 tonnes, ease of servicing and the ergonomic operator's compartment which has been given an extra strong and highly durable shell weighing approximately 1.5 tonnes.

Minetruck MT6020 was launched in 2008, giving mines the unique opportunity to increase their tonnage kilometers per hour (tkm/h) and also to save costs through reducing the size of their fleets.

These benefits were quickly realized, notably in Australia where mining contractor ACM (Australian Contract Mining) recently took delivery of the country's 100th Minetruck MT6020. "We've expanded our fleet of Atlas Copco Minetruck MT6020 trucks because it is the most productive underground truck available today by a fair margin," says Brian Rodan, Managing Director of ACM.

Stuart Tonkin, Chief Operating Officer at Barminco, which operates the largest fleet of MT6020 in Australia and Africa, has also noted significant gains. He says: "Reducing fleet size and fleet kilowatts enables cost savings which is important in current markets. The Minetruck MT6020 is another step in the development of the articulated underground truck and is being adopted by the industry."

Atlas Copco confirms the truck's continuing success in Australia and says its reliability and performance has made the 60 tonner the leading truck in its class.

Business Line Manager Matt Cobham explains: "We have sold 60 tonners to both contractors and miners in equal numbers and we believe the Minetruck MT6020 is the clear, current first choice. Sixty trucks will be delivered to Australian customers during 2011, and more than half of those will have replaced other trucks at mine sites.

"We have also upgraded the entire drivetrain since the original Minetruck MT5000 - axels, dropbox, upbox, transmission and engine. Our oldest Minetruck MT6020, which is working at Stawell Gold Mines in Victoria, has racked up more than 25 000 hours to date and is still going strong."

Hauling at 11 km/h on a ramp with a 15 percent gradient - a typical scenario for a large underground mine - the Minetruck MT6020 claims to be as fast as trucks with smaller payload ratings but delivers 20 percent more tonnage. And despite its 60 tonne capacity, it does not require larger excavation dimensions.

Among the planned upgrades for 2012 will be the installation of a Cummins Tier 2 engine offering extremely low emissions as well as substantial noise reduction. According to Matt Cobham this upgrade will be even more significant as the larger underground mines go deeper and grapple with ventilation efficiency and increased power costs.

The Minetruck MT6020 is manufactured in Kvarntorp, Sweden.

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