Key mining, materials handling and minerals processing equipment supplier Takraf Africa – part of the global Tenova Takraf group – has appointed engineering service agency Etuba Engineering its agent in Botswana.
Takraf Africa engineered technologies GM Richard Späth tells Mining Weekly that the appointment of the Orapa-based company, effective as of January, supports Takraf Africa’s ability to respond to the specific requirements of Botswana’s natural resources industry.
It also provides enhanced service delivery regarding the maintenance and most efficient performance of equipment.
“The company has well-established ties with the major mining operations in the country, having, among others, focused on the supply and servicing of industrial vacuum equipment installed at diamond producer Debswana’s mines, and establishing an agency for conveyor products.”
Etuba will market the full range of Takraf Africa’s mining, materials handling, dust control, comminution and Delkor solid/liquid separation equipment.
“Such agencies bring Takraf Africa’s world-renowned suite of in-house technologies and licence agreements to the doorstep of the Botswana mining fraternity,” Späth adds, noting that this enables the company to provide a service that combines internationally recognised expertise with innate knowledge of local conditions.
In March, Takraf Africa completed the replacement installation of a Takraf dynamic scrubber, owing to normal wear and tear, at a diamond mine that had been operating since in 1998.
The scrubber was installed at the mine’s primary crusher and forms part of a system comprising eight dynamic scrubbers that were installed on an ore handling operation by Bateman Engineered Technologies – as Takraf Africa was known prior to the acquisition of the Bateman group by Tenova in 2012.
The system, he points out, handles 72 000 m3/h of dust-laden air and, owing to its four-stage cleaning action and integral fans, reduces dust-emission levels to less than 20 mg/m3.
“This is well below the legally required level,” Späth says.
The scrubber controls the dust generated during the processing of kimberlite ore in the primary crushing circuit, from receipt of feed to the discharge of crushed material at the storage bin and onto the conveyor belt for transfer to the milling section.
Besides being efficient collectors of the high dust loads typical of ore processing applications, he highlights, its low energy and maintenance requirements, combined with low water consumption, make the Takraf dynamic scrubber well suited for the remote and arid mining conditions in Botswana.
The contract, awarded in November 2016, covers manufacture, delivery and technical assistance during installation and commissioning.
This project, states Späth, underlines one of the key Takraf Africa differentiators – assuring clients of support for products and equipment over the complete life cycle, as a result of the longevity and stability of the supplying company.
“Botswana is an arid country and, therefore, Takraf systems are designed to be water-wise, reducing water use and/or increasing water reuse,” he adds, noting that, as with mining operations throughout Africa, mines are often located in remote, difficult-to-access areas faced with a shortage of skills in the surrounding regions.
This, therefore, emphasises the need for easy assembly and maintenance of equipment, says Späth.
The largest order, in terms of size and value, for the Jetfloat modular floating pontoon system received by Takraf Africa has come from Botswana, Späth enthuses. The order was completed in 2016.
The system was installed as an 850-m-long walkway on a slimes dam and was supplied with mild steel galvanised grating and mild steel galvanised kick plates, complete with fibreglass handrails and knee-rails with a combined length of more than 1 600 m, he explains.
The slimes dam was extended by the diamond mine as part of its expansion activities; the walkway, therefore, replaced an earlier 800-m-long version installed more than 15 years ago.
Späth adds that the Jetfloat system’s many benefits allow for its use across various applications as a floating platform and walkway for mining and industrial process operations; as well as in several marine, fishing and recreational applications.
The Jetfloat is made of Lupolen 5261 Z and its modular pontoons are connected to the required configuration and size, and can be quickly dismantled and relocated if required, he says.
The Jetfloat also requires “virtually” no repair or maintenance costs, and offers a long life expectancy and resistance to degradation from weathering, material fatigue, acid, salt water or ultraviolet rays.
String of Projects
A comprehensive range of advanced technologies – from crushing and screening to dust control – forms part of Takraf Africa’s reasoning for its success in Botswana.
Its equipment can be found on every mine owned by diamond miner Debswana, a joint venture between the Botswana government and major diamond producer De Beers, which it has supplied since the 1980s.Over the years,
Takraf Africa’s services in Botswana have extended well beyond diamonds, Späth enthuses, noting the supply of flotation cells for mining and exploration company Iamgold’s Mupane gold mine in 2005, among others.