Orders have already been placed by major South African coal miners for solutions provider Sandvik’s new LS312 flameproof underground loader.
The first active units will start rolling off the local production line in the second quarter of this year, according to Sandvik Mining & Rock Technologies product support manager Richard Hickson.
“The LS312 loader is an enhanced 12 t high-capacity heavy-duty utility vehicle, building on the best features of our 10 t LS190 and 12 t LS190S models,” says Hickson.
“This raises the bar once more in terms of better performance, reduced emissions and lower total cost of ownership.”
Powered by the C7.1 mechanical engine, the new-generation LS312 complies with Tier II emission standards while ensuring quieter and more efficient operation.
“Customers’ productivity will benefit from increased engine performance, with 20% higher torque and 8% more power,” he notes.
“The lower revolutions a minute at which the machine can run also translates into less engine wear and lower emission levels.”
Hickson highlights that the new design continues to include a focus on reliability and easier maintenance. The drivetrain has been enhanced with a 12 t axle, and the structural integrity of the front frame has been strengthened.
Maintenance crews will have easier access to hydraulic test points, which are now located in a panel on the side of the machine, making for safer working practices.
Moreover, the improved cooling system will further reduce maintenance time.
The product also offers an optional electronic shutdown system, providing easier fault diagnosis, reducing the mean repair time.
With the industry driving the need for collection of machine and operational information, the Sandvik LS312 LHD offers an onboard data monitoring capability, allowing for transfer of information over the mine’s WiFi network and management through the ‘My Sandvik Cloud’ platform.
“Safety is paramount in all our designs, and a proximity detection interface is now provided as standard,” he adds.
Further, “the lower frame design – facilitating improved visibility for the operator – has been retained in the LS312”.
The local manufacture of this new model brings a number of benefits to customers and the economy, says Sandvik’s Jet Park-based production manager Stephan Greisiger.
“Local production of the LS312 units will significantly reduce the lead time to our market. This makes it easier for customers to plan capital equipment purchases,” says Greisiger.
Sandvik’s quality-accredited facility of some 2 200 m2 under roof ensures the highest standards are applied in the manufacture and assembly of these new units. Its capacity is proven by its output of 5 t and 8 t loaders.