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Design, implementation and maintenance regime established for mine drive systems


Press Release


Mining Weekly article


Tag: SEW EURODRIVE Maxolution Electra preview

Source: interview


Schalk Burger

Staff Writer

Byline: yes


Deadline: 5 August 2014

DOP: 15 August 2014

Words: 346


Headline: Design, implementation and maintenance regime established for mine drive systems


A holistic solution for drives and materials handling systems in the mining industry will provide customised systems and maintenance services specifically suited to the requirements of each mine and plant, says industrial drives and gear major SEW EURODRIVE South Africa MD Ute Schoeman.


"Maxolution is a new business unit which takes care of business from a consultant perspective. It offers customers customised solutions based on their particular application requirements. The idea is that the customer comes to SEW-EURODRIVE with their requirement of moving something from point A to B, and the mechatronic engineering Maxolution team will provide a solution that is best suited."


The solution is based on international global trends, and includes technical experts and local OEMs, to design, implement and test systems at each site. Local partners also provide maintenance support.


Maxolution is a complete one-stop engineering solution for motion control, and adds substantial value to the mineral processing industry higher up the value chain. The solution further aims to support investment decisions by providing proven references of successful implementations.


While industrial gearboxes and motors are ideal for bulk materials handling, they are limited in their functionality when processed material becomes valuable. This processed material would be the actual gold and platinum, for example. To reduce the potential for pilfering, human handling should be limited with the higher-value commodities, and this is where Maxolution adds considerable value.


The trend in the industrial environment is a move away from conveyor belts that just move products from ‘A' to ‘B', and instead having an item or station that moves from ‘A' to ‘B' itself. This technology comprises wireless communication and inductive power transfer systems. Instead of having cable trays or busbars to transfer power to the mobile solutions, SEW-EURODRIVE makes use of its Movitrans contactless energy transfer system.


"Here, electrical energy is transferred from a fixed conductor to one or more mobile consumers, without contact. Instead the electromagnetic connection is made via an air gap, which means it is not subject to wear-and-tear and is therefore virtually maintenance-free," Schoeman explains.


As part of the solution, an Automatic Guided Vehicle (AGV) utilises inductive power supply in the form of transfer cables embedded into the floor. One of these is a leakage cable, which provides the communications. The AGV features a built-in safety feature that slows it down when humans are near its path.


Schoeman continues: "This safety concept is based on a scanner that will detect any people in the vicinity, whereupon it will switch off and enter a ‘safe' mode. This technology is particularly beneficial to the mining industry, which continues to place a greater emphasis on health and safety."


SEW-EURODRIVE focuses not only on the inductive power transfer, but also the gearboxes and motors - including the positioning system, wireless communication and power and control systems.


Additional functionality can be added to the system in the form of an integrated hoist. Due to the positioning benefits, the user can swiftly and dynamically change their station layout for different production runs. Each solution is custom-designed, which enables the end-user to determine specific long-term needs, such as gradual migration to new systems or modular designs that can be scaled, to match their strategic plans.


"Partnering with the end-user to enable higher levels of customisation aims to ensure that the significant research and development conducted by SEW EURODRIVE and proven industrial uses of technologies can be used to augment the efficiency of the mining industry and increase its confidence to invest in new technologies."


The international team will also provide advice, based on the proven use of the solutions, to reduce the variety and amount of stock and spare parts end-users and their suppliers require to ensure efficient supply chains. Mining companies can approach SEW EURODRIVE at the Electra Mining conference, to be held from September 15 to 19, in the Nasrec convention centre, in Johannesburg. Guests can obtain more information on Maxolution and speak to its experts about their specific challenges or requirements.


"While new technologies are promising, end-users require customisation and extensive experience regarding implementation to improve their confidence adopting and implementing new technologies," concludes Schoeman.






Rene Rose

GM: Communications

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F: 011 248 7289

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