Sandvik Unveils Groundbreaking Battery Drill Rig: A Green Revolution in Surface Mining

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Renowned Swedish manufacturer Sandvik has taken a significant leap into the future of sustainable drilling with the introduction of its groundbreaking battery electric surface drill rig.

his innovative machine stands out from conventional diesel-powered drills by incorporating a rechargeable battery, demonstrating Sandvik’s commitment to efficiency and environmental friendliness.

Lauri Laihanen, Vice President of R&D for Surface Drilling Division at Sandvik AB Mining and Rock Solutions, explains that the changing landscape demands intelligent, autonomous, and zero-emission equipment. The BEV drill rig, capable of boring holes up to 229 mm in diameter, combines the seamless power of plug-free drilling with the uninterrupted capabilities of a permanent grid connection, offering unprecedented flexibility.

What sets the Sandvik rig apart is its advanced battery pack, providing up to one hour of drilling or seven hours of tramming. Sandvik envisions the battery primarily supporting targeted hole boring and tramming tasks, while larger operations can rely on grid power for maximum efficiency. The company is also pushing boundaries in grid connectivity, focusing on developing lightweight and safer cables at their test facility in Tampere.

Innovatively, the cable setup is designed for ease and efficiency, automatically adjusting tension based on the drill’s movement and featuring a single-layer winding for reduced bulk. The utilization of a high-voltage cable further contributes to a lighter and more manageable connection. Positive results from construction customer trials have informed this design, and Sandvik is now applying these learnings to the mining industry, recognizing unique challenges in that sector.

While there may be skepticism in some quarters, the commercial fleet management sector, driven by efficiency and cost savings, is poised to embrace this shift. Sandvik’s electric drill rig, with its consistent performance improvements over diesel, is poised to become a game-changer in the mining and drilling industry, appealing to a broad spectrum of adopters.