QMEB ยป Employer commits to staying with diesel due to ‘flexibility’
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Employer commits to staying with diesel due to ‘flexibility’

Sandvik underground electric truck
Sandvik underground electric truck

An underground mining services company decided to continue using fossil fuels because it was more versatile.

Byrnecut recently revealed it would not completely transition to renewable energy.

Although battery electric heavy vehicles might be cheaper to maintain, managing director Pat Boniwell conceded diesel-powered trucks and loaders were still more versatile.

“Diesel-electric equipment has a proven ability to combine the low maintenance benefits of electric machines with the flexibility of diesel,” he said in a public statement.

Boniwell made the remarks while announcing a new collaboration with Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions to develop new diesel-electric mining equipment The agreement involves rolling out hybrid electric drivetrains that are promised to boost sustainability, efficiency and productivity underground.

Sandvik president Mats Eriksson agreed with Boniwell that it was impractical to abandon diesel.

“An immediate switch to full battery-electric is not feasible for every operation,” he said.

These diesel-electric machines are touted to require no torque converter and fewer rotating components, allowing for more flexible design. This is claimed to reduce operating costs and the frequency of maintenance.

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