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Energy Services News

Opinion: Hybrid energy solutions can boost viability of African mines

     18th July 2017 In this opinion article, juwi Renewable Energies MD Greg Austin reflects on prospects in Africa for bilateral power purchase agreements for both grid-connected and behind-the-meter hybrid energy solutions 

Power increasingly expensive input cost in Southern African mining

By: Simone Liedtke     14th July 2017 In Southern Africa, power is becoming a far higher input cost in industries and processes than it was in the past, says mining ventilation solutions provider TLT Actom director Craig Johnston, highlighting that one of the major input costs at any underground mine or process plant is that of... 

Power increasingly expensive input cost in Southern African mining
TOTAL VENTILATION One of the major input costs at any underground mine or process plant is that of ventilation or air used in the process

Mining Indaba offering new junior zone, boosting interface opportunities 

By: Martin Creamer     4th July 2017 Strong new thrusts are planned for next year’s Investing in African Mining Indaba, which is scheduled to take place at the Cape Town International Convention Centre from February 5 to 8, once again to support investment in mining companies operating in Africa and to provide an effective platform... 

Mining Indaba offering new junior zone, boosting interface opportunities
Investing in African Mining Indaba MD Alex Grose outlines to Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer the major new focus on junior miner involvement. Video and Video Editing: Lionel da Silva.

New speed control product for pumps, compressors

     16th June 2017 The first member of a new product family in the field of speed control for compressors and pumps, the VECO-Drive, combines the reliability of mechanical gears with the productivity of low-voltage, variable-frequency drives (VFDs). Introduced by intelligent drive solutions, systems and... 

New speed control product for pumps, compressors
EFFECTIVE COMBINATION The VECO-Drive, which combines a mechanical planetary gear with a frequency controlled servo motor, reduces energy consumption by more than 2 000 MWh/y

Solar PV project construction starts at Burkina Faso gold mine

By: Mia Breytenbach     16th June 2017 The groundbreaking ceremony of the new 15 MWp photovoltaic (PV) power plant, which will supply power to Canadian midtier mining company Iamgold’s Essakane S.A. gold mine, in Burkina Faso, was held last month at the site. The power plant is owned by global renewable-energy independent power... 

Solar PV project construction starts at Burkina Faso gold mine
Photo by Bloomberg
NOTABLE SIZE The solar plant will be added to the existing 55 MW heavy fuel power plant, thereby creating the largest hybrid photovoltaic-diesel plant in the world

Zambia’s mines chamber calls for transparent electricity pricing

By: Ilan Solomons     16th June 2017 The Zambia Chamber of Mines (ZCM) says that the country’s power pricing must of necessity be determined in a transparent, objective and efficient manner. The chamber notes that as an industry body, it does not and cannot negotiate power tariffs for its individual members. Nonetheless, the ZCM... 

Zambia’s mines chamber calls for transparent electricity pricing
CORE CONCERN The question of power pricing is ‘vital to the economic future of Zambia’

‘Solid’ industry employing survival strategies

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     16th June 2017 Independent process industry consultant Santosh Gunpath is cautiously optimistic about the future of the South African mining pumps industry. “There is no definitive direction for this sector, with companies following a wait-and-see approach while keeping costs to a minimum.” 

‘Solid’ industry employing survival strategies
GROWTH POTENTIAL While the stability, progress and growth of the mining pumps industry lies predominantly in maintaining its existing installed base, potential does exist for growth in other areas

Festoon systems ‘life blood’ of bulk materials handling

     2nd June 2017 As mining companies continue to look for ways to make their operations more efficient and cost effective and remain competitive as the global market emerges from a protracted period of low commodity prices, effective supporting equipment, such as festoon systems, have become increasingly... 

Festoon systems ‘life blood’  of bulk materials handling
Photo by Duane Daws
KEEPING MACHINERY MOVING Powermite’s I-Beam cable carrier is suited for heavy-duty applications, including bulk container handling by cranes typically found at ports

Mines can use their vast amounts of data to lower costs – Rockwell Automation

By: Schalk Burger     2nd June 2017 The connected mine concept helps mines to lower costs by providing detailed, real-time control at all levels of operations, says industrial automation multinational Rockwell Automation sub-Saharan Africa MD Barry Elliot. The concept can be implemented in areas where mines have optimisation... 

Mines can use their vast amounts of data to lower costs – Rockwell Automation
BARRY ELLIOT The ability of personnel to leverage data is key to enabling a connected mine

‘Cost-reflective’ electricity tariffs a must – chamber

     2nd June 2017 Efficient electricity costs must be the basis for tariffs, says Zambian Chamber of Mines president Nathan Chishimba. Knowing the true cost of producing electricity efficiently in Zambia is the first step on the road to cost-reflective tariffs, he adds. It is also the first step on the road to... 

‘Cost-reflective’ electricity tariffs  a must – chamber
NATHAN CHISHIMBA At present, the cost of producing electricity in Zambia is not known

Structural supply side changes, growing demand support rising vanadium prices

By: Henry Lazenby     1st June 2017 Surging vanadium prices so far this year are underpinned by structural supply side changes and stable, growing demand from most end uses, analysis by independent market intelligence firm Roskill has found. Since falling to a 12-year low of $13.5/kg of ferrovanadium in the fourth quarter of 2015,... 

Structural supply side changes, growing demand support rising vanadium prices
Photo by Henry Lazenby
Vanadium pentoxide flakes ready for shipment at Largo Resources' Maracas Menchen mine, Brazil

Danakali finds power solution for Colluli

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     31st May 2017 Potash developer Danakali has appointed a preferred power provider for its Colluli project, in Eritrea, following a tender process. US-based Inglett and Stubbs International has now been appointed as the preferred power provider, and Danakali said on Wednesday that work will now start on further... 

Botswana receives load bank system order

By: Simone Liedtke     26th May 2017 The first load bank system from power-generating brand supplier Vert Energy – the Southern Africa distributor of Asco power switching and control components – was supplied to private equity company Peter Investments, in Botswana, last month. 

Botswana receives load bank system order
SECURING SUPPLY Vert Energy plays a role in providing dependable power to companies, even in Africa’s most remote countries – such as Botswana

Junior miners well placed to exploit better-performing commodities

By: Dylan Slater     26th May 2017 After a downturn of several years in the mining and mineral resources sector globally, “green shoots” are appearing off the back of a recovery in commodity prices that began in 2016, with a corresponding improvement in investor sentiment, according to Botswana-based coal and energy development... 

Teck sells two-thirds interest in Waneta dam, related hydro transmission assets

By: Henry Lazenby     13th May 2017 International diversified electric utility holding company Fortis has agreed to buy Canadian diversified miner Teck Resources' two-thirds interest in the Waneta Dam and related transmission assets in British Columbia for $1.2-billion in cash, the companies announced Friday. The public companies... 

Extended product range to improve opencast offering

By: Simone Liedtke     12th May 2017 Sustainable productivity solutions provider Atlas Copco is developing and extending its PAS, VAR and WEDA pump ranges to include high head variants that will better service the requirements of opencast mining customers, says Atlas Copco business line manager of the portable energy division David... 

Nevsun taps UK-based Aggreko to provide 29.5 MW solar-diesel hybrid power to Bisha

By: Henry Lazenby     4th May 2017 Canadian base metals producer Nevsun Resources has signed a ten-year deal with Glasgow-based Aggreko to provide solar-diesel hybrid power to Nevsun’s flagship Bisha mine, in Eritrea. Aggreko will supply 22 MW of diesel and 7.5 MW of solar-generated power for the company’s copper and zinc... 

Nevsun taps UK-based Aggreko to provide 29.5 MW solar-diesel hybrid power to Bisha
Photo by Nevsun Resources
Bisha, Eritrea

Consultancy offering miners ‘optimisation tools’

By: Ilan Solomons     28th April 2017 In the current climate of constrained capital, clients in the mining sector are seeking ways to maximise returns while minimising exposure to risk, particularly those companies which need to make strategic decisions on potential investments, says engineering company WorleyParsons CEO Denver... 

Consultancy offering miners ‘optimisation tools’
PROVIDING EFFECTIVE SOLUTIONS Advisian draws on WorleyParsons’ ‘deep domain expertise’ and experience in the mining sector to advise clients and then can partner with them to implement that advice

Strengthening fundamentals continue to bolster ‘new age’ metals outlook

By: Henry Lazenby     22nd April 2017 ‘Big money’ investors are increasingly looking to invest in the relatively small ‘new-age metals’ space, comprising metals such as lithium, graphite and cobalt, as strengthening fundamentals for these minerals and an unprecedented high-impact investment opportunity draw the potential for bonanza... 

Strengthening fundamentals continue to bolster ‘new age’ metals outlook

Bushveld subsidiary, Chinese firm to build coal-fired power plant in Madagascar

By: Mia Breytenbach     21st April 2017 Aim-listed Bushveld Minerals subsidiary Lemur Resources has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Chinese State-owned hydropower engineering and construction company Sinohydro Corporation to codevelop an initial 60 MW independent power producer (IPP) coal-fired power plant and an... 

Bushveld subsidiary, Chinese firm to build coal-fired  power plant in Madagascar
Photo by Bloomberg
POWER SOURCE Lemur Resources’ mine in southern Madagascar is expected to supply coal to the Imaloto Independent power producer plan

Mobile power plants mooted as solution to African mines’ electricity woes

By: Ilan Solomons     14th April 2017 One of the main topics of discussion at the recent 2017 Mining Indaba revolved around power supply to mines on the continent. With official power distribution grids only covering around 40% of Africa, a substantial number of mining operations are responsible for their own power generation, says... 

Mobile power plants mooted as solution  to African mines’ electricity woes
REDUCING CONCERNS By farming out electric generation to a fast-track power provider, mining companies can eliminate the challenges that divert from their core focus of extracting minerals

More electric vehicles expected underground

     31st March 2017 The annual global market for lithium-ion battery energy capacity for traction and propulsion energy in underground mining vehicles (UMVs), marine vessels and rail cars is estimated to reach a combined 8 614 MWh in nine year’s time, and pack revenue will total $5.99-billion. 

More electric vehicles  expected underground
Photo by Bloomberg
LITHIUM-ION BATTERIES The continued decline of lithium-ion battery prices has helped the electric vehicle market to grow

Nigeria now producing enough cement for domestic market, export

By: Dylan Slater     31st March 2017 The Nigerian government has officially confirmed that the country has attained self-sufficiency in cement production and is exporting the commodity.  

A catalyst for innovation, Goldcorp pushes the envelope on technological advances

By: Henry Lazenby     11th March 2017 Canadian gold major Goldcorp is acting as a catalyst to bring innovation into the mining industry, an industry traditionally loathe to adopt new technologies that could ultimately improve the bottom line. As exemplified in its leading role in sponsoring the #DisruptMining competition during the... 

A catalyst for innovation, Goldcorp pushes the envelope on technological advances
Photo by Goldcorp
Goldcorp’s existing policies promote diversity in the work place

Renewables offer mines bottom line boost, stability

     3rd March 2017 juwi Renewable Energies MD Greg Austin says mining companies can achieve a 2% to 3% gross profit benefit as a result of energy cost savings, should they replace diesel or heavy fuel oil (HFO) with solar power in pure self-consumption mode. 

Renewables offer  mines bottom line  boost, stability
GREG AUSTIN Integrating solar photovoltaic into mine power supply systems makes good sense

Delivering integrated power solutions for African projects

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     24th February 2017 Integrated energy solutions provider Zest Energy, a member of the Zest WEG group, is set to hand over a power generation solution for Syrah Resources’ Balama graphite mine, in Mozambique, at the end of April. This flagship project – the company’s largest power plant in terms of power output –... 

Delivering integrated  power solutions for African projects
POWER PROJECT Zest Energy successfully delivered a mobile substation solution to the Kamoa-Kakula mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo

Event a gold mine for energy solutions

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     24th February 2017 Mining companies operating in Africa continue to recognise the need to go off-grid, find energy solutions that ensure they do not depend on an outside source and acquire renewable-, cleaner-energy solutions for a more sustainable future, in spite of the tough economic climate, says Africa Energy... 

Event a gold mine for energy solutions
Photo by Bloomberg
LEADING THE WAY The Africa Energy Indaba has lined up a host of speakers aligned with energy solution services and opportunities applicable to the mining sector

Mines could reap significant savings by incorporating renewables into their energy mix

By: Dylan Slater     24th February 2017 Renewable-energy systems, including solar photovoltaic (PV) power, hold significant benefits for mining operations in sub-Saharan Africa, says renewable-energy solutions company juwi Renewable Energies MD Greg Austin.  

Rapid energy access needed in Southern Africa

     24th February 2017 The rebound in commodity prices should usher in new projects as well as the expansion of existing operations in Southern Africa’s mining industry, but the region, counteractively, has an insufficient power supply, says fast-track mobile turbine power provider APR Energy regional sales director... 

Renewables gaining traction

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     24th February 2017 Off-grid mines present one of the biggest business opportunities in renewable-energy solutions for mining companies, says engineering professional services consulting firm WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff director of transmission, distribution and power Dinesh Buldoo. The mining sector is one of the... 

Renewables gaining traction
DINESH BULDOO Off-grid mines present one of the biggest business opportunities in renewable-energy solutions for mining companies

Temporary power solutions touted as cost-effective option for mines

By: Ilan Solomons     17th February 2017 The global mining industry is enduring a period of great uncertainty. In the face of extreme market volatility, stagnant commodity prices, weak demand for products and suppressed levels of economic growth in established markets, many mining companies worldwide are striving to remain buoyant,... 

Temporary power solutions touted  as cost-effective option for mines
MAJID ZAHID Power generation and supply is a part of mines operations that could make significant adjustments to their capital expenditure

GM, Honda in JV to manufacture hydrogen fuel cell systems

By: Ilan Solomons     10th February 2017 US multinational corporation General Motors (GM) and Japanese multinational corporation Honda last week announced the establishment of the automotive industry's first manufacturing joint venture (JV) to mass produce an advanced hydrogen fuel cell system that will be used in future products from... 

GM, Honda in JV to manufacture  hydrogen fuel cell systems
JOINING HANDS Honda’s Toshiaki Mikoshiba and GM’s Mark Reuss showcase their jointly developed next generation fuel cell stack system

Ikea Canada picks up second Alberta wind farm, pays Teck, TransAlta C$119.6m

By: Henry Lazenby     27th January 2017 Scandinavian furniture and furnishings company Ikea Canada has bought a second wind farm in Alberta as part of its global ambition to match its electricity consumption with renewable energy production by 2020. Ikea will acquire an 88 MW wind farm located near Drumheller, about 130 km east of... 

Sustainability to be highlighted by EPC services provider

By: Robyn Wilkinson     27th January 2017 Engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) services provider Black & Veatch will meet with new and existing clients at this year’s Investing in African Mining Indaba to explore the ways in which its sustainability-focused solutions can benefit their operations. 

Sustainability to be highlighted by EPC services provider
INTEGRATED ENERGY SOLUTIONS Mines in countries such as Australia, Canada and Chile are incorporating renewable-energy power sources into their electricity supply

UK scientists develop ‘power generating’ diamond

By: Ilan Solomons     27th January 2017 New technology has been developed that uses nuclear waste to generate electricity in a nuclear-powered battery. A team of physicists and chemists from the University of Bristol have grown a man-made diamond that, when placed in a radioactive field, is able to generate a small electrical current.... 

UK scientists develop ‘power generating’ diamond
Photo by University of Bristol
GROUND-BREAKING DEVELOPMENT The development could solve some of the problems associated with nuclear waste, clean electricity generation and battery life

Antofagasta swaps 40% Alto Maipo stake for cheaper electricity

By: Henry Lazenby     20th January 2017 London-based Antofagasta announced Friday that its subsidiary Minera Los Pelambres had agreed to transfer its 40% stake in the Alto Maipo hydroelectric project to controlling shareholder Gener in return for cheaper electricity. Los Pelambres has been in partnership with Gener in the Alto Maipo... 

New engine oil promises significant cost savings

By: David Oliveira     9th December 2016 Global petroleum company Shell’s latest heavy-duty diesel engine oil, Rimula R4L, coupled with its customer value proposition (CVP), aims to improve cost efficiency at mining operations amid the current tough economic climate. Shell South Africa commercial lubricants sales GM Anton Niemann... 

Zambian copper industry must be prepared for future upswing

     2nd December 2016 While a low metal price environment necessitates that mining companies cut spending and reduce expansion, adopting an overly cautious approach will ensure that companies risk being unprepared when the upswing occurs, says global professional services firm Ernst & Young (EY). Being unprepared for... 

Zambian copper industry must be prepared for future upswing
Photo by Bloomberg
ON THE PRECIPICE Without new investment in improved productivity, Zambia’s mining industry will be unable to cash in on renewed global demand for copper
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