Engineering & Mining Journal

SEP 2018

Engineering and Mining Journal - Whether the market is copper, gold, nickel, iron ore, lead/zinc, PGM, diamonds or other commodities, E&MJ takes the lead in projecting trends, following development and reporting on the most efficient operating pr

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Page 35 of 75

BLASTHOLE DRILLS 34 E&MJ • SEPTEMBER 2018 New Efficiencies, Same Safety Komatsu's re-release of the 77XD as the P&H 77XR blasthole drill rig furthered one of the company's primary missions, according to company leadership. "Safe- ty is our priority," Matt Collins, product director, drills, Komatsu, said. "The new features found on the 77XR were de- signed around how to keep people safe while owning, operating and maintaining this machine. "In addition to our inherent safety culture that drives new product develop- ment, we built it with a focus on avail- ability, serviceability and a strong com- mitment to technology." Originally, the 77XD was demoed at MINExpo 2016. With the re-release, an- nounced in April, the "77XR has an up- dated control system," components de- signed to ensure drilling efficiency, and a range of automation options, Collins said. The backstory is succinct. "Our 77XR drill is truly a clean sheet design, where we took the time to explore a variety of concepts," Collins said. In mid-2016, Collins called Joy Glob- al's 77XD a "new design" and described it as a "base with buildup options thereaf- ter," allowing the incremental creation of "a customized machine" to "meet certain applications and needs." Since then, Joy was bought by Komat- su, and test trials "sparked" and influ- enced continuous design development, he said. "Feedback from potential users was used to explore different system options during testing at our Komatsu Proving Grounds in Arizona," where "we pushed the drill harder than ever," he said. "Our goal was to improve drilling versatility, while simplifying the associat- ed maintenance tasks." Improving drilling versatility meant optimizing cycle time, which became a primary goal in the development of the rig's control system, Collins said. "In particular, non-drilling time: the func- tions that are necessary to complete a pattern in preparation for blast," he said. "To provide more time for instan- taneous production drilling in the hole, we evaluated each portion of the cycle to determine ways to condense those pre- paratory functions." That led to the development of a range of drill automation tools, Collins said. The list of tools offered include auto-drilling, auto-leveling, auto-dust suppression, auto-mast positioning, and auto-bit changing. "These areas can pos- itively impact the operators' experience, onboard or as part of a larger autonomous system," he said. The control system is compatible with the P&H Drill Automation system, which enables teleremote operation leveraging high-precision GPS geo-fencing and ob- stacle detection and mitigation, Collins said. "Our Drill Automation platform is designed to be either stand-alone turn- key, or implemented as an interoperable system that fits into a customer's larger automation network," he said. Whether you are drilling thru a mountain or a mole hill, we've got a durable, dependable solution for you. If you need tools for construction, mining, or demolition-we're the only name you need to know. Call (800) 872-6899 or vs Brunner � Lay "Quality First" since 1882

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