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“We are proud to be a key partner of Codelco as it significantly extends the life of the Chuquicamata mine in the most productive, efficient, and safe manner possible.”

Helena Hedblom

President and CEO

Epiroc.

Epiroc, a leading productivity partner for the mining and infrastructure industries, has won a large equipment and service order from Codelco for use at its Chuquicamata mine in northern Chile. Codelco has ordered underground loaders, face drill rigs, rock bolting rigs and mine trucks, as well as several years of technical support and training, for use at the Chuquicamata underground mine project. The order is valued at more than MUSD 20 (MSEK 190) and was booked in April 2020.  

Codelco, the world’s largest copper producer, opened the Chuquicamata underground mine in 2019. The company is transforming the century-old Chuquicamata copper and gold mine from being the world’s largest open-pit mine into a high-technological underground operation. The transformation will extend the useful mine life by 40 years, according to Codelco.  

We are proud to be a key partner of Codelco as it significantly extends the life of the Chuquicamata mine in the most productive, efficient and safe manner possible,” says Helena Hedblom, Epiroc’s President and CEO.

Juan Mariscal, Sourcing Category Manager at Codelco, says: “Epiroc was chosen because it complied with all the technical, safety and performance requirements that Codelco demanded for the Chuquicamata Underground Mine Project, while being the supplier that provided the best economic proposal for all its equipment as a whole.”

The order includes multiple units of the Scooptram ST1030 and ST18 loader, the Boomer S2 face drilling rig, the Boltec M bolting machine, and the Minetruck MT65, the highest payload capacity underground truck in the world.

Epiroc’s Minetruck MT65 is part of the order by Codelco | Picture Source: Epiroc.

Since the successful launch of Minetruck MT65 in 2016, Epiroc have maintained Minetruck MT65’s position as the highest payload capacity underground truck in the world. The new engine on the truck dramatically lowers emissions, enabling more sustainable operations. The latest engine technology meets Tier 4 Final/Stage 5 requirements and is certified to comply with the North American standards CANMET (Canada) and MSHA (USA).

NOx has been reduced by 45%, and diesel particle matters have been lowered by 80% compared to a Tier 2 engine. Lower emissions improve the working environment and reduce the need for ventilation, leading in turn to lower operation costs and a smaller environmental footprint. Another great advantage of Minetruck MT65 is its new Ejector dump box option for compact envelop applications. Epiroc indicated that it developed this solution to cover more applications with the same load frame. The modular design is a pin-on solution that attaches to the load frame, which makes it possible to swap between standard and Ejector dump boxes as needed.

The machines will be equipped with 6th Sense solutions for automation, connectivity and information management. The solutions include Epiroc’s Rig Control System, RCS, which makes the equipment ready for automation and remote control, and Epiroc’s Certiq system, which allows for intelligent monitoring of machine performance and productivity in real-time. Delivery of the equipment will take place later this year. 

This order from Codelco follows the signing last year of a large contract for service at Codelco’s Andina mine, and a large order for equipment used at its El Teniente mine.

The full-service contract at El Teniente mine spans seven years and includes on-site Epiroc service technicians maintaining equipment such as Epiroc’s drilling rigs Pit Viper 351 and FlexiROC. Orders and revenues will be incurred throughout the contract period. It is one of the largest-ever contracts signed for Epiroc’s Mining and Rock Excavation Service division.

We are proud of the important partnership with Codelco as we together make their operations as productive, efficient and safe as possible,” said Helena Hedblom, Epiroc’s Senior Executive Vice President Mining and Infrastructure. “The drilling rigs do tough, hard work and we are pleased to have a top-quality service organization that ensures the equipment continuously performs at the highest level.”

Codelco is a Chilean state-owned mining company and the world’s largest copper producer. Andina has both open pit and underground operations and has the second-most copper reserves among all mines worldwide.

The contract includes the opportunity in the near future to implement automation features for the current equipment fleet, such as remote-controlled steering from safe distance, similar to what Epiroc has provided at other open pit mines in Chile and around the world.

This contract expands Epiroc’s already-significant presence in Chile. 

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