Mining organisations are focussing their attention on the electrification of mining equipment and vehicles. Hochschild Mining carries out mining operations in Latin American countries - Argentina and Peru. Its mining operations will now become more sustainable with the arrival of more electric vehicles at its mining sites, as the company aims to reduce its carbon emissions and limit the required ventilation for underground mining operations.
Electrifying the Mining Fleet
The supplier of Hochschild’s electrified mining vehicles is Aramine, an underground mining specialist, which provides various worksite machines, and is gradually making the switch to battery-power across its range.
Previously, Hochschild has operated six electric vehicles at its San Jose narrow-vein silver mine, Argentina, which it had purchased between 2017 and 2018. The previous mining fleet included the Aramine L130E miniLoader, a 1-2 t capacity electric LHD and an Aramine L150E tethered-electric LHD. In 2020, the company took on a battery-electric vehicle at its Inmaculada gold-silver narrow-vein site in Peru.
‘In 2020, we piloted the use of the first electric vehicle at Inmaculada for liquid waste management. Working in partnership with our on-site waste management contractor, the project is the first of its kind in Latin America and, if successful, will be scaled up throughout 2021’, the company says. ‘It is also worth noting that the trials carried out indicate some modifications are needed for it to be able to be used in the irregular surfaces at Inmaculada, and it is still under investigation by the supplier’.
The implementation of the new electric vehicles comes from the company’s 2020 sustainability report, which says, ‘In 2021, we hope to expand our electric fleet with the purchase of electric vehicles for use in larger underground chambers that will not only reduce our carbon footprint but will also cut ventilation costs’.
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