Project

Battery Electric Underground Mining Truck

Customer:   MacLean Engineering

About The Project

GOLDCORP has stated that their Borden Lake mine will be the first all Electric mine in Canada. Taking on this challenge meant acquiring many different pieces of machinery. Since Battery Electric equipment is still relatively new technology for the underground mining industry there are still several pieces of equipment that don’t have electric equivalents. Happy with the technology MEDATECH provided in the MacLean EV equipment, GOLDCORP and MacLean Engineering reached out to MEDATECH to see if we could do the dirty work of converting some of the more difficult and peculiar machines. Since the powertrain of the MacLean 977 had similar performance characteristics to a Motor Grader we accepted the challenge to convert and reman a used CAT 12M3 machine for the Borden Lake Project.

Why Electric

Battery Electric Equipment allows a mine to unlock a trifecta of benefits: improved health and safety, reduced greenhouse gas emissions, and decreased operating costs. Removing emissions from even a few metres, never mind kilometres, below the ground requires massive ventilation infrastructure—shafts, equipment, and enormous amounts of electricity to run the machinery.

“Moving away from diesel and by achieving other reductions associated with the use of clean technologies, (a typical mine) can avoid more than 7,500 tons of CO2 and eliminate 3 million litres of diesel fuel, 1 million litres of propane and 35,000 megawatt hours of electricity every year.”

Challenges

  • Maclean Engineering tasked MEDATECH with the challenge of delivering a working Battery electric powertrain in an extreamly short timeline.
  • The success of this machine weighed heavily on the performance and safety of the batteries. MEDATECH formed a partnership with the leading Lithium Ion battery producer in the world that has both the best energy density and charging performace.
  • The machines are implemented in underground mining where charging infrastructure is difficult to manage.

Solutions

  • Using a design preparred for Ontario Power Generation MEDATECH was able to implement the battery technology extreamly fast for the MacLean machine
  • Instead of offering multiple charging station MEDATECH devised a plan of mobile on-board charging that travels with the machine. This gave the units ultimate flexibility.
  • Project Team was highly integrated with the MacLean engineering organization, aligned to objectives and committed to delivery.
  • Amid the downturn in Mining this development allowed Maclean Engineering to gain market share in a new sector

Highlights

  • Thermal management via liquid cooling and heating allows the machines to operate in extream heat and cold. No other manufacturer has this capability.
  • Advanced battery technology is both the safest and most energy dense.
  • Fast charging and ultimate flexibility with on-board charger.
  • MacLean Engineering landed a large order for the conversions to the GOLDCORP borden project. The units provided are the only truly battery electric utility machines being delivered to this site.

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