Sandvik Mining Using Volvo Penta Engines in Underground Trucks and Loaders

Sandvik Mining has chosen to use Volvo Penta's Tier 4 Interim/Stage IIIB engines in its underground mining trucks and loaders.

A Sandvik loader with Volvo Penta Tier 4 Interim/Stage IIIB engine.
A Sandvik loader with Volvo Penta Tier 4 Interim/Stage IIIB engine.
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Sandvik Mining has selected Volvo Penta engines for its underground trucks and loaders for the global mining industry.

“We started installing Volvo Penta TAD1251VE engines in our TH430 underground trucks about three years ago,” says Dale Rakochy, Product Line Support Manager for Sandvik Mining, based in Ontario, Canada. “Since then, our relationship with Volvo Penta has evolved, and all our large loaders and trucks are now powered by Volvo Penta Tier 4 Interim/Stage IIIB engines.

“We selected Volvo Penta engines because they provide an unbeatable combination of power, speed, low fuel usage, emissions compliance, low downtime, reduced ventilation costs and increased operator safety, which cannot be matched by any other engine in the market today,” says Rakochy.

The Volvo Penta engines used in the Sandvik trucks and loaders meet the stringent Tier 4 Interim/Stage IIIB emission standards for nitrogen oxides (NOx) and diesel particulate matter (DPM). Volvo Penta engineers designed a selective catalytic reduction (SCR) unit in the exhaust system that converts dangerous NOx gas into harmless nitrogen and water. The Volvo Penta exhaust-treatment solution also reduces DPM levels without the need for a diesel particulate filter (DPF).

“Volvo Penta’s Tier 4 Interim engines have a much cleaner burning profile than other engine manufacturers we researched,” says Rakochy. “Their particulate and NOx output levels are among the best in the industry.”

Ventilation is a major cost for mine operations, so reducing the NOx and DPM levels can substantially reduce ventilation costs and improve underground working conditions. In addition to substantial costs for ventilation, there is considerable complexity to ensuring adequate fresh air is supplied to the right areas at the right times. Volvo Penta’s Tier 4 Interim engines require much less ventilation than other engines and can also provide huge cost savings.

Comparing Sandvik LH514 against a major competitor, the LH514 ventilation costs would be as much as 50% less, and fuel costs would be as much as 10% less. In addition to the reduced NOx and DPM levels, the Volvo Penta engines provide lower fuel consumption without sacrificing performance. As a result, their running cost per hour is among the lowest in the industry. The high-efficiency engines also generate less heat than higher-powered engines while doing the same amount of work.

Another critical consideration for Sandvik’s engineers is to ensure optimum visibility for the drivers of these massive machines. The Volvo Penta Tier 4 Interim engines do not utilize cooled EGR and therefore the heat rejection and radiator size is significantly reduced. “Utilizing Volvo, we are able to use the same radiator size as a Tier 2 engine, whereas, DPF technology requires larger radiators. This improves visibility for the operator without raising the overall height of the vehicle,” Rakochy says.

Ron Huibers, President of Volvo Penta of the Americas, comments, “The underground environment presents unique challenges to heavy equipment manufacturers. The Tier 4 Interim compliant powerplants we are supplying for Sandvik’s underground mining machines are a perfect example of what can be accomplished when our engineering team works closely with our customers’ engineers to create innovative solutions to those special challenges.”