Diversified engineering company Becker Engineering, part of the Becker group of companies, has recently developed a range of innovative solutions for underground personnel transport.
Becker Group CEO Ken Quick says, "An important feature of these underground transport systems is that they can be supplied with reliable diesel-driven generator sets to ensure the absolute safety of miners in the event of a power outage."
He says that underground transport equipment from Becker Mining Systems includes chairlift systems to transport miners quickly and safely on inclines and declines, raise climber systems that provide mobile solutions to steeply inclined underground logistics, and monorail systems that are used to transport personnel, mechanical equipment and materials on a widely branched rail network over long distances.
"In close association with leading international manufacturers, the company supplies key underground transport systems to mines throughout Africa. The company is committed to ensuring all underground transport systems from small transport applications, to complete turnkey operations meet the highest quality and safety standards," says Quick.
Electro-hydraulic operated rack and pinion raise climber systems from Becker Mining Africa are used to transport material from crosscut to the workface, smoothly, safely and efficiently.
This system, with a length up to 240 m and a pulling force of 33 kN, has safe and reliable drive technology to efficiently handle loads in steep inclines up to 45°.
For increased power requirements in demanding applications, two raise climbers can be used in tandem. A load dependent control is provided for added safety. This system is also readily adapted to facilitate mechanised drilling from the unit, with the addition of a drill rig.
The modular design of this materials handling and shunting system ensures a high degree of flexibility and provides a cost efficient solution to the growing demand for the ideal system configuration to any underground site.
The monorail systems are used to safely transport personnel, heavy mechanical equipment and large quantities of materials from a central loading site, over long distances to any working place underground.
The widely branched rail network system comprises positive guided vehicles that form a flexible train unit that is operated by hydraulic drive units. The rail track is anchored and suspended from the hanging wall and energy is supplied by a conductor rail. This system, which operates at gradients up to 14° at a travelling speed up to 2,5 m/s, has a total load capacity of 18 t.
Becker Mining Systems provides a critical service to the mines that encompasses the latest technology and engineering, as well as assembly and supply of components for underground transport systems. This service is enhanced by a specialised consulting, training and support facility to ensure optimum efficiency and protection of equipment and total safety for miners.