A major drive to boost productivity at a platinum mine in Limpopo Province, South Africa, has resulted in drive engineering specialist SEW-EURODRIVE supplying a number of complete drive systems with industrial gear units to the project.
The drive packs are specifically for three different conveyor systems, Rudi Swanepoel, Head of Projects at SEW-EURODRIVE, explains. The first drive system has two 220 kW drives, while the remainder have three 360 kW and one 300 kW drives respectively.
The drive systems form part of the OEM’s X Series, covering torque ranges from 6.8 kNm to 475 kNm. The large quantity of predefined accessories available for the X Series allows for a great deal of flexibility in catering for diverse mining applications.
“A special requirement on this project was the extremely short delivery time, placing us under tremendous pressure to have the first drive system assembled and on the mine by the beginning of March,” Swanepoel explains.
The tight timeframe was due to the fact that the mine has specific shutdown periods for proactive maintenance requirements. In order to facilitate the schedule, the complete drive systems were assembled at SEW-EURODRIVE’s Nelspruit and transported directly to the platinum mine.
Delivery of the drive systems for the second conveyor system is scheduled for April, and the last conveyor system in May, for which the gear units are being airfreighted especially from Germany to meet the deadline.
The X Series industrial gear units feature high- and low-speed couplings, motors and base plates. These preassembled units represent significant cost-savings and reduced downtime, as the power pack is supplied with the input coupling shaft with the alignment already carried out.
Combined with the above-mentioned shaft alignment, in general there are only two interfaces that need to be fitted. If all the civils are carried out correctly, this is a major benefit for the client in terms of rapid on-site installation and commissioning.
Nearly any mounting position or shaft arrangement on a driven machine can be implemented. A reversible gear unit housing also facilitates variable installation. The robust housing, low-noise gearing and cooling system boost safety and ease of maintenance.
Swanepoel comments that this platinum-mine project represents a major coup for SEW-EURODRIVE’s successful introduction of the X Series. “It is quickly establishing a footprint, as it is the preferred industrial gear units that we are specifying in the mining industry at present.” The OEM also maintains a comprehensive stockholding, including critical spares, for full customer support and aftermarket back-up.