BELAZ progresses with gas-powered mining trucks at Alrosa, Apatit & KRU operations

November 10, 2020. Global mining truck major BELAZ working jointly with Russian mining company partners continues implementation of several breakthrough projects on gas-motor mining equipment. The company said the project meets mining customer aims to switch to alternative, more ecological pollution-free fuels.

Joint work on the gasification of BELAZ mining vehicles has two directions – gas-diesel hybrids (dual fuel) and pure gas power. The testing of a 45 t BELAZ 75476 mining dumper equipped with a liquefied natural gas (LNG) piston engine is to move to operational trials at the Mirny Mining and Processing Division of the world’s leading diamond mining company, ALROSA in Yakutia after nine months of test operations already completed at the mine of Lomonosovsky Mining and Processing Complex of Severalmaz, an affiliate of ALROSA in Arkhangelsk region.

In order to receive the operational results of crucial parts and assembly units of LNG BELAZ dump truck, the technicians of Mirny Mining and Processing Division have developed a special testing program that will take another nine months to complete. “The main thing is to reach the performance key indicators of the mining dump truck in terms of transportation and downtime cycles for filling and repair if any. This is needed to take the advantage of such an innovation on our site. We can fill at least ten mining dumpers with gas,” said Ruslan Sizonov, Deputy Executive Director of ALROSA.

At the same time, BELAZ is also taking part in a project to transfer mining equipment to hybrid LNG-diesel operation in the Murmansk region, at the Vostochny (Eastern) mine of the Kirovsk branch of Apatit, part of PhosAgro Group, the largest world’s high-grade phosphate company. The mine extracts apatite-nepheline ore and is part of the wider Khibiny phosphate complex on the Kola peninsula.

Finally in the Kuzbass coal mining region, BELAZ has been working closely with LNG producer Sibir-Energo, based in Novokuznetsk, to develop a certified gas-diesel system for BELAZ-75131, with a carrying capacity of 130 t and Cummins KTA-50 engine. This system makes it possible to replace 35-40% of diesel with natural gas, depending on the mining and technological conditions of a mine field where the vehicle is operated. The BELAZ dump truck equipped with the gas-diesel system has successfully passed expert examination of industrial safety and has been granted the approval of Rostechnadzor (Federal Environmental, Industrial and Nuclear Supervision Service of Russia) for operation in hazardous production facility.

The trucks have gas cylinder equipment (GCE) in the form of cryogenic tanks located on the deck of the machine with the safety of the arrangement confirmed by strength and deformation calculations. There has been deployment at several coal operations in the Kemerovo area including UMMC’s KRU (Kuzbassrazrezugol) at Krasnobrodsky coal mine. Sibir-Energo says to date its partner mining companies are now operating 60 of the LNG-diesel dual fuel vehicles.

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