Haul trucks are two-axle dump trucks designed for use in high-production mining and heavy-duty construction environments and as such, they are intended for off-road use. Their size has gradually increased over the last few decades. In the 1980′s, 190 tonne trucks were in operation, but now capacities reach over 360 tonnes.
Trucks with a payload capacity of more than 272 tonnes are referred to as ultra trucks. Most haul trucks are diesel-powered. Cabs are designed to reduce noise to protect the hearing of the operator, and new materials are used to make cabs even quieter. Often, haul trucks are fitted with GPS. The first ever haul truck was the Fordson tractor, which was built in 1917.
There are several types of trucks and heavy duty mining vehicles that are now on the market. The following are some of the popular types:
The Caterpillar 785C Rock Truck is 11 metres long, 6.2 metres wide, and 5.7 metres tall. Its engine can produce 1,451hp of power. It can carry 1,893 litres of fuel and its ACERT engine technology reduces emissions. It has six forward and one reverse gear, and can reach a maximum speed of 54.8km/h. It weighs 102,150kg when empty and can carry a 136078kg payload. It has a larger operator station, and more glass for improved visibility. Electronic clutch pressure control makes shifting much smoother.
The Komatsu 1500 HD is 7.62 metres long, 6.89 metres wide, and 5.85 metres tall. It has a 938hp engine. It has seven forward and one reverse gear and has a maximum speed of 58km/h. Its minimum turning radius is 12.2 metres. It weighs 105,300kg when empty and is capable of carrying a 144,178kg payload. It has automatic retard speed control and advanced K-ATOMICS with “skip-shift” function. The cab is spacious, and offers very good visibility. The instrument panel is easy to use. The parking brake is on the input shaft, and the secondary brake is push-button operated. It is easy to maintain, with oil-cooled, multiple-disc brakes, a fully hydraulically-controlled braking system, a vehicle health monitoring system, electric circuit breakers, and remote mounted transmission.
The Liebherr T282B is the largest diesel-electric truck in the world, with a payload capacity of 363,000kg. It was introduced at the Bauma Trade Fair in Munich, Germany, in 2004. It is 7.32 metres tall, 9.09 metres wide and 7.32 metres tall. It has a 3,650hp engine and a top speed of 64km/h. It weighs 544,000kg, and so cannot be driven on public roads.
Heavy-duty vehicles are designed to perform construction tasks which usually involve earthwork operations. They comprise implement, traction, structure, power train, control and information systems. Heavy-duty trucks were blamed for many road safety and infrastructure problems in mining areas of South Africa. An example is the Scania P380 8×4 heavy-duty mining truck which was demonstrated at the Excon construction equipment exhibition in Bangalore. This vehicle has received many good reviews.
Examples of heavy-duty vehicles (also termed “equipment”) are shovels such as the Komatsu/Demag H740OS, excavators such as the Hitachi EX1200, loaders such as the LeTourneau L1100, dozers such as the Caterpillar D9, and graders such as the Caterpillar 16H.
Article provided by Endeavour International, manufacturer of Crimping Machines