Copper mining is a practice that was begun in prehistoric times, however it has never been as efficient as it is today. Several standards and regulations have been put into place in mines all over the world to ensure that miners are as safe as possible. Better yet, every year these rules and regulations are enhanced to make mining even safer. However, some safety measures cost more than others. For example, a lot of underground mobile mining equipment gets its fuel from diesel engines. Of course, with such engines come emissions that have to be ventilated out of the mine, which can cost a lot of money. However, just recently, the company Atlas Copco conjured a solution to this costly problem.
They recently released a scoop that runs on batteries, meaning it is not forced to stay within the distance of an electrical cable like other electrical scoops. It was made with the goal of sustainability and cutting costs. Sure enough, the Scooptram ST17 meets both safety requirements and environmental standards, and makes expensive ventilation unnecessary. It can also be operated remotely in places underground that are too deep for ventilation systems to reach. Mining companies can teach their production cycle to these machines, and trust that they will complete their tasks perfectly every time.
This machine would not have been possible, however, without boosts in the power of batteries. The Battery Industry works tirelessly to produce stronger batteries, using any creative means available. More powerful batteries lead to the production of more powerful battery-powered equipment for copper mining. It is beginning with a scoop, however the applications are endless. Soon enough, the copper industry may be experiencing battery-powered trucks, drills, and various other pieces of heavy equipment.
While the cost reduction by using battery-powered equipment will certainly be significant, we should not lose sight of the beneficial impact it will have on the environment as well. Atlas Copco creates all of its products with a sustainable approach. Switching from diesel-fueled engines to battery powered heavy equipment will greatly reduce the detrimental environmental impact of copper mining. Working in a mine will be more comfortable for mining employees, mines will be safer overall, mines may be cast by the community surrounding them in a more favorable light, and dangerous emissions will be eradicated.
I am excited to see how battery-powered vehicles progress in the copper mining industry!
For more information about the Scooptram ST17, check out its product description.