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By Shane Lasley
Metal Tech News 

Teck pilots electric concentrate haulers

Battery fifth wheel to deliver copper con from Canadian mine Metal Tech News – February 16, 2022


Last updated 2/15/2022 at 1:25pm

Teck Resources Caterpillar MEDATech ALTDRIVE Western Star electric haul truck

Teck Resources Ltd.

A MEDATech ALTDRIVE-powered Western Star truck similar will be used to haul copper concentrates during a pilot project at Teck Resources' Highland Valley Mine in British Columbia.

Toward its goal of eliminating 1,000 internal combustion vehicles from its fleet by 2025, Teck Resources Ltd. is piloting a fully electric on-highway transport truck to haul copper concentrates the roughly 30 miles (48 kilometers) from its Highland Valley Mine in southern British Columbia and a rail loading facility in the town of Ashcroft.

The Canadian miner says this will mark a world's first when it comes to battery-electric truck hauling copper concentrates from a mine.

In addition to helping Teck meet its aggressive ICE vehicle elimination objectives, this pilot will take the mining company further along its path to becoming a carbon-neutral operator by 2050.

"Testing and implementing new electric vehicle technologies is one way we are taking concrete steps towards achieving our goal of being carbon neutral across our operations," said Teck Resources President and CEO Don Lindsay. "Teck is already one of the world's lowest carbon-intensity producers of copper, zinc and steelmaking coal, which are key materials to enable the low-carbon transition, and we are committed to further reducing the carbon intensity of our operations to support a cleaner future."

Slated to begin this summer, the pilot will utilize a Western Star fifth wheel truck converted to battery electric by MEDATech, an Ontario, Canada-based mining technology company.

The MEDATech ALTDRIVE-powered electric truck being used for this pilot is expected to eliminate 418 metric tons of carbon dioxide per year – the equivalent of roughly 90 passenger ICE vehicles.

In addition to furthering Teck's climate goals, the conversion to electric transport of copper concentrates is expected to save the mining company money through fuel savings and reduced maintenance.

The battery-electric drive system is expected to work more efficiently than a comparable diesel engine, outputting a constant 620 kilowatts, which is roughly equivalent to 830 horsepower, and is configured to continuously output almost double the amount of torque.

"The fully-electric ALTDRIVE system is designed for this haul cycle at HVC (Highland Valley Copper) requiring a vehicle that weighs 65,000 kilograms (143,300 pounds) loaded, 25,000 kg (55,1000 lb) unloaded, and completes the same four to five 95-kilometer (59 miles) roundtrips every workday," said MEDATech President Robert Rennie. "Since the truck batteries will charge on the downhill haul through regenerative braking, the rig will require only a short battery recharge at the Ashcroft, B.C. rail terminal so the haul cycle time is expected to be the same as a conventional truck."

This electric fifth-wheel pilot project builds on Teck's greenhouse gas reduction initiatives, including the recently announced agreement to work towards deploying 30 of Caterpillar's zero-emissions large haul trucks at its steelmaking coal operations in Elk Valley, BC.

Further details of this partnership with Caterpillar can be read at Teck forges an electric Cat partnership in the January 26, 2022 edition of Metal Tech News.

Author Bio

Shane Lasley, Metal Tech News

With more than 14 years of covering mining, Shane is renowned for his insights and and in-depth analysis of mining, mineral exploration and technology metals.

Email: [email protected]
Phone: 907-726-1095


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