Metso Outotec launches new padded truck body

23rd May 2022 By: Darren Parker - Creamer Media Contributing Editor Online

Metso Outotec launches new padded truck body

Key members of the Metso Outotec team with their new truck body
Photo by: Creamer Media

Industrial technology company Metso Outotec has launched its new truck body, which is a one-piece, lightweight, hybrid truck bowl that combines the benefits of high-strength steel and rubber.

It was designed to lower hauling costs, in addition to offering a safer working environment and maximising payload.

The new truck body is capable of achieving more tonnage than conventional lined truck bodies, owing to the lower weight of the bowl, for a lower operating cost than steel-lined truck bodies. It also enables a 30% reduction in weight over conventional steel-lined truck bodies. This allows for more payload to be hauled each round, thereby improving operational efficiency.

Metso Outotec Southern Africa sales and service VP Tuelo Benson Segosapelo told Mining Weekly on May 20 that the body would be fabricated locally. He added that the new truck body was indicative of how Metso Outotec was contributing to lowering emissions across the mining sector through producing innovative concepts geared at making mining more sustainable.

Combining a high-strength steel structure with the characteristics of the rubber enabled Metso Outotec to shave off unnecessary heavy steel in the structure, since the rubber takes on the impact and wear from the hauling. This reduced the weight of the bowl.

Metso Outotec bulk materials handling technology manager Keith Blair explained that sticky material build-up in the truck body could be prevented with Metso Outotec’s flexible lining option.

Without this carry-back, he pointed out, the entire capacity of the truck could be fully used to haul payload, thereby improving efficiency and using up to 14 600 ℓ/y less diesel, which translates to 200 t/y less carbon dioxide emissions.

The elastic rubber lining absorbs the energy of every impact, preventing it from reaching the frame. This allows for a lighter-than-usual, high-structural-strength steel frame beneath the rubber. Therefore, the body can absorb maximum shock at the lowest possible weight.

Blair explained that the rubber lining would result in less stress being placed on the truck, thereby reducing maintenance requirements.

Moreover, the lining boasts up to 300% longer wear life than steel, while the modular construction means only worn elements need to be replaced.

The lining is also beneficial to maintenance staff, who do not need to weld or torch cut, thereby negating hazardous fumes and the danger of hot works.

The lining results in a 97% reduction in vibrations when compared with steel bodies, as well as a 10 db reduction in noise levels from about 95 db to about 85 db.

Blair said the new truck body would not constitute a major change to the truck itself. He explained that installing the new truck body was similar to changing one’s car tires to another brand.

He assured that it would not impact the CE marking, which means the product meets European Union safety, health and environmental protection requirements, or the warranty of the truck.

Moreover, Metso Outotec will ensure that it acquires the necessary original-equipment manufacturer’s approval.

Metso Outotec offers an optional service contract with the truck body, which includes regular inspections, maintenance and repairs, spare lining, thereby benefitting from fixed and foreseeable costs, as well as common development goals.

“Based on our experience, long-term collaboration is the surest way to get the best possible outcome and reach customer targets. Working side-by-side and combining the knowledge the client has of [its] process with our wide offering and experience, creates the prerequisite for success,” Metso Outotec Africa president Ian Barnard said.

Terrafame’s Sotkamo multi-metal mine, in Finland, was one of the first mines globally to test the Metso Outotec truck body. The abrasive ore mined meant that wear protection was high on the agenda in every part of the process, as was the need to increase payload and improve driver comfort.

The Metso Outotec truck body was installed on the mine’s oldest haul truck, a Hitachi EH3500, in December 2018. The findings confirmed that the new body enabled an additional 9 t of payload, improved hauling efficiency, reduced noise and vibration levels and reduced emissions.