Original-equipment manufacturer Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions launched its new Top Hammer XL large-hole drilling system for large-scale surface mining and quarry applications through a global virtual event on March 24.
The new machines are available to order, with the first machines ready for delivery by the end of the third quarter, says Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions account manager André Blom.
Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions product master Pieter de Witt adds that in bulk material mining applications such as these, where large-size holes are favoured, the Top Hammer XL will compete with traditional down-the-hole (DTH) drilling systems; using top hammer technology to achieve faster penetration rates. The Top Hammer XL can drill diameters of 140 mm to 178 mm.
In a statement released at the launch, the company said the Top Hammer XL system had been thoroughly tested and proven in several field tests by drilling more than 100 000 m in challenging rock conditions. The test results showed a 50% reduction in fuel consumption, a 25% reduction in total drilling costs and a 15% increase in productivity, compared with DTH drilling alternatives.
The Top Hammer XL comprises three main components – a Pantera DP1600i drill rig, a RD1840C rock drill and LT90 rock tools – all of which were reviewed, redesigned and mutually optimised to be more efficient.
De Witt explains that this optimisation results in a drilling solution that is more cost effective while ensuring lower carbon dioxide emissions.
De Witt says the Pantera DP1600i provides a solid base for the RD1840C rock drill, generating an optimum pulse for the effective LT90 tooling system, which, in turn, transfers the high-energy shockwave, with minimum losses to the rock.
Blom notes that the Pantera DPi range has been based on effective technology since its launch in 2008.
The operator environment features a touchscreen interface, while the compressor control system results in fuel savings for every metre drilled.
The Pantera DP1600i features support for higher-level automation solutions – such as Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions’ AutoMine Surface Drilling for boom drills.
The rig can also be customised to meet special requirements, and is available in Tier 3 and Stage 5 engine emission versions, featuring Caterpillar C11 and Caterpillar C9.3B engine types respectively.
The new RD1840C rock drill, which is specially designed for large-hole drilling, with 49 kW drilling power, features a robust design and balanced long-piston percussion package for demanding circumstances. De Witt says the long-piston technology generates high-impact energy with optimum pulse form, improving performance in large-hole drilling without compromising the rock tools’ service life.
He explains that the new layout of pressure accumulators in the rock drill improves efficiency and lowers hose vibrations.
The RD1840C will be made available with the Sandvik RockPulse tool-stress monitoring system, which
measures the stress waves and guides the operator to find the right drilling parameters for the best rock contact and performance.
The LT90 rock tools are developed to match the other components in the Top Hammer XL system. De Witt explains that the new shoulder-driven system with a double-pass thread offers high-end drilling dynamics and good rock-breaking efficiency.
Further, the new male and female tube rods help to ensure a higher rate of penetration, straighter holes and increased service life for the whole drill string.
“The improved thread design lowers stress levels from bending, and good coupling charac- teristics have been observed in the double-pass thread of this tool system,” notes De Witt, adding that premium steel grades and heat-treatment processes have further improved its durability.The company
’s patented “retrac” design forms the base of the LT90 drill bits, with a strong gauge row, good flushing, high rock-breaking capabilities and reduced hole deviation.
The drill bits can be delivered in standard carbide grades or in the company’s patented Power Carbide grade – depending on the needs of the rock formation.