Oct 27, 2020

Sandvik and Glencore Queensland Metals sign £136m deal

Dominic Ellis
3 min
Six-year agreement will see Swedish company supply underground and mobile mining equipment to Glencore’s Queensland and NSW metalliferous mines
Six-year agreement will see Swedish company supply underground and mobile mining equipment to Glencore’s Queensland and NSW metalliferous mines...

Sandvik, the Swedish multinational engineering company, has signed an agreement worth £136.1 million with Glencore Queensland Metals to supply underground and mobile mining equipment at Glencore’s Queensland and New South Wales metalliferous mines.

According to a report by Australian Mining, the deal will see Sandvik provide drills, loaders and trucks to Glencore over a six-year period. After inking the deal in June this year, Glencore placed an initial equipment order totalling £25.7 million, with Sandvik supplying the first piece of equipment under the deal.

Tim Redmond, Sandvik Mining and Rock Technology global account manager for Glencore, says that this deal was inked after more than a year of negotiations with the mining company.

“We spent nearly a year working closely with the Glencore team to identify exactly what was needed for the long-term success of their assets,” Redmond says, adding that Glencore issued a heavy mining equipment tender in 2018, before it requested an additional response to its tender in early 2019, asking Sandvik to provide a more 'innovative and collaborative solution'.

“Our solutions enabled us to optimise the upfront capital costs and provide a competitive supply of aftermarket services moving forward.”

A key advantage of the partnership is that Glencore’s fleet will now be based on one technology platform, ensuring that the company will be able to promote additional automation, mine intelligence and vehicle interaction controls in the future.

Simon Pope, Glencore Queensland Metals general manager – mining, points out that the agreement was significant for the company as it would see all heavy mobile mining equipment at the company’s Queensland sites supplied by one original equipment manufacturer (OEM).

“This partnership with Sandvik will help us improve the way we operate and maintain mobile equipment in our underground mines by providing us with a real reduction in the total cost to operate our primary fleet,” Pope said.

“We look forward to working with Sandvik to share operational and maintenance insights through new and emerging technologies and unlocking further improvements in safety for our people and the productivity of our mines.

“Sandvik machines have played a role in our operations for a number of years and have a proven track record for productivity and reliability,” he explains.

Redmond highlights that a key factor of the Glencore deal is that it creates a model that can now potentially be replicated in other markets and with other commodities.

“Rather than each party simply trying to get the best price, this agreement adds new value to the relationship and creates benefits for everyone,” he concludes.

Sandvik recently signed an agreement to acquire US based CGTech, a leader in software for numerical control (NC/CNC) simulation, verification and optimisation. 

The product offering includes VERICUT, a machining simulation and optimization software which is CAM, machine tool manufacturer and cutting tool neutral and works stand alone or in conjunction with all major CAM suppliers. The company will be reported in Sandvik Coromant, a division within Sandvik Machining Solutions.

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Jun 18, 2021

Unmanned train to allow Vale to reopen iron ore plant

Iron ore
Autonomous trains
2 min
Vale’s Timbopeba iron ore plant will be able to resume operations near the Xingu dam through the use of autonomous trains

Brazilian miner Vale SA will be able to resume operations at its Timbopeba iron ore dry processing plant in up to two months thanks to the use of an unmanned train, the company said in a statement this week.

Vale - Timbopeba iro ore plant

With the train, Timbopeba will be able to operate at least at 80% of its capacity of 33,000 tonnes of iron ore “fines” per day, reports Reuters.

Vale was forced to shut down the plant in the Alegria mine complex recently after labor authorities in Minas Gerais state banned activities close to the Xingu dam due to concerns of a risk of collapse.

Autonomous trains

Vale said access by workers and vehicles continues to be suspended in the flood zone of the dam due to the ban even though it remains at emergency level 2, which means there no imminent risk of rupture.

But some workers are allowed entry under strict security precautions and they will get the unmanned train going once it has been tested, which would take between one and two months, the company said.

The unmanned train will travel automatically along 16 kilometers (10 miles) of track operated by a system that can control the speed and activate the brakes, Vale said.

Vale announces first ore at Voisey’s Bay mine extension

Vale has reached the milestone of first ore production at the Reid Brook deposit at the Voisey’s Bay mine expansion project in Northern Labrador, Canada - recognised as the safest mine in Canada.

Vale Timbopeba


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