Hitachi, ABB sign MoU to explore carbon-reducing opportunities

29th March 2021 By: Donna Slater - Creamer Media Contributing Editor and Photographer

Technology company ABB has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with machinery manufacturer Hitachi Construction Machinery to share their expertise and collaborate in bringing solutions to market that will reduce the greenhouse-gas (GHG) emissions associated with heavy machinery in mining.  

The agreement was signed by ABB process industries division president Joachim Braun and Hitachi Construction Machinery mining group president, senior VP and executive officer Sonosuke Ishii on March 22.

The companies will explore possibilities to apply ABB’s electrification, automation and digital solutions to mining trucks and excavators provided by Hitachi Construction Machinery as part of wider efforts with mine operators to electrify all processes from pit-to-port.

Hitachi Construction Machinery also brings expertise in driverless operation and labour-saving technologies.

The aim of the combined solutions is to enhance the efficiency and flexibility of customer businesses, contributing to the reduction of carbon dioxide and the realisation of a sustainable society.

The collaboration with Hitachi Construction Machinery is one of many that ABB is seeking to develop with original-equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to accelerate the transition to all-electric mines.

Braun says ABB is calling for more collaboration between OEMs and technology companies to fast-track the development of new emissions-reducing systems, with electrification and automation of the whole mining operation being the goal.

“We are ready to work more with OEMs to establish a common approach for the market, and through strategic collaboration provide solutions that can help enable a low-carbon society and make mining operations more responsible.”

He adds that new emissions-reducing technologies can transform the energy-intensive mining industry to achieve an even more productive, but also sustainable future.

ABB global mining head Max Luedtke says that currently, the challenge ABB’s customers face is on electrification of trucks and the time to change is now. “But nobody can achieve this transformation alone. Co-creation of solutions with OEMs and mining companies is needed to successfully integrate electrification in mines.”

ABB’s digital applications draw on advanced libraries and software solutions to reduce process complexity and can integrate with existing equipment and technology. ABB’s Ability MineOptimize is a digitalised portfolio of connected solutions that is already improving energy efficiency and productivity, as well as enhancing the capital expenditure and operational expenditure, of openpit and underground mines globally.

Ishii says this collaboration will enable the two companies to more effectively work towards their shared vision for mining. “We are delighted to be collaborating with ABB as we continue to invest our efforts in introducing eco-friendly technologies and systems for the mining industry.”