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February 2021

From the Chairman’s Desk

With the lifting of some of the Level Three lockdown restrictions, it is extremely heartening to see that the Association is once again seeing a strong interest in candidates wishing to attend the training courses. There is never a better time than the present to invest in improving staff skills and thus ensuring a safer workplace. Two training courses are scheduled for the next couple of months and both are filling up fast with applicants.

The Conveyor Certificate course, which gives a broad understanding of the entire conveyor system, is to be run on 1st to 3rd March, and is held in Randburg. The three days of lectures culminates in the candidates writing an open book examination, success at which achieves a certificate of competency.

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Mines must continue to fight Covid-19

The mining industry’s early adoption of preventative measures and advanced tracing has most likely prevented the spread of Covid-19 tenfold and where outbreaks have occurred these measures have been largely successful in containing the spread.

“By its nature, the mining industry is geared towards safety and preparedness so the addition of certain levels of COVID-19 health and safety measures was far easier to implement than in less safety concerned environments. Yet still the industry has seen infections throughout the curve of the pandemic with a number of deaths occurring,” says Nico Pienaar, director of surface mining industry association ASPASA.

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Load Turning with Maximum Safety

Every so often, users of indoor cranes are faced with the complex task of not only lifting and horizontally moving heavy components such as press tools, machine beds or special containers, but turning them, too.

In order to enhance safety during this process, Demag has introduced a new standard function for its Universal Crane product range. Crane installations can now be equipped with a load-turning function that achieves maximum safety as an optional feature, eliminating the need for any additional engineering.

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Right Belt for the Job

New to BMG’s extensive range of Fenner power transmission components are Fenner Quattro Plus Twin Wrap (TW) wedge belts, that transmit 30% more power than conventional belts.

“These maintenance-free wedge belts, with a wrapped chloroprene rubber construction, have a two-ply higher modulus polyester cord outer jacket to reduce belt elongation and improve stability in tough operating conditions,” says Carlo Beukes, Business Unit Manager, Power Transmission division, BMG.

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Systematically Correcting Mistracking

At its location in Ghent, ArcelorMittal Belgium was experiencing severe mistracking problems with its 225 conveyor belts, which have a total length of 58 kilometres. The damage caused to the conveyor, its structure and unplanned downtime resulted in high costs, loss of production and consequential losses.

Tim Vertriest, Reliability Engineer at ArcelorMittal Ghent, decided to find a solution, “The CenTrax tracking system came out best in our comparison search, and has proved to be a lasting solution.“

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On the Straight and Narrow

When a mining operation based in the Copper Belt of Zambia found themselves with an unexpected increase in wheel and flange wear and repair costs on a newly-installed crane, they asked Konecranes, Johannesburg to inspect and advise on what the problem could be.

Says Emil Berning, Managing Director of Konecranes South Africa, “Our CraneQ Crane Geometric and RailQ Runway surveys are what makes the company the leader in crane conflict resolution.

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Decades of R&D Pay Off

Terence Osborn, FLSmidth’s director of product and account management for sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East, highlights that R&D is the lifeblood of the company’s new technologies. So much so, that it has some 80 projects underway to improve its mining-related offerings.

“The power of digital technology is certainly a key element of these efforts,” says Terence. “Together with our Blue Box digital concept, based on our ECS/ControlCenter, which is a cybersecure interface between our equipment and cloud data storage, we use our SiteConnect mobile app to monitor the performance of equipment and process plants in real time.

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From Concrete Slab to Working Crane

Lifting equipment company Condra is to manage as a turnkey project the manufacture of a 70/5-ton electric overhead travelling factory crane and the construction of its gantry.

The newly-received order is for the design and supply not only of the crane itself, but also for the erection of the gantry from concrete slab up, and thereafter delivery, installation and commissioning of the crane to complete the project.

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Most Compact Bell-housing Solution

In an underground mining environment, solutions that are easy to maneuver are key. SEW-Eurodrive, specialists in drive and control technologies, offers the most compact bell-housing solution currently available on the market.

Typically used for underground conveyors with limited height restraints, SEW-Eurodrive’s purpose built bell-housing solution can also be utilised for overland conveyors, in-plant conveyors and on stacker or reclaimer drives.

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Automatic Guidance

BLT World has added the Scrapetec PrimeTracker belt tracker to its range to eliminate problems associated with conveyor belt systems, including misalignment, abrasion and belt damage.

“For optimum performance of a conveyor system, it is critical that the belt always runs straight on the conveyor, without sideways movement. Our new belt tracker has been designed to automatically guide a conveyor belt back into the correct straight-line position, to prevent costly downtime and component replacement,” explains Ken Mouritzen, managing director, BLT World.

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3 000 and Counting

DISA Equipment has recently sold its 3 000th Doosan machine in South Africa to plant rental specialists, TKR Operations, in a joint venture with Medkoeriers, which provides material processing and handling services at Tharisa Minerals in Rustenburg, North West Province.

“Delivery of the Doosan DX520 excavator to the mine in October last year, marks the 3 000th Doosan machine to be sold locally and this machine is now hard at work for TKR Operations and Medkoeriers, along with other Doosan equipment,” says Darrel Holton, managing director, DISA Equipment (Pty) Limited, trading as Doosan, part of the Capital Equipment Group of Invicta Holdings Limited.

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