Tag Archives: Sandvik Mining and Rock Technology


An upcoming Namibian player, KODO Drilling has taken delivery from Sandvik Namibia of the first of Sandvik Mining and Rock Solution’s two Leopard™ DI650i surface drill rigs in the country.

The rigs will be put to work at an opencast gold mine, where KODO Drilling is undertaking down-the-hole (DTH) production drilling. The units arrived at the mine site in early November 2022. According to Andries van Wyngaard, territory manager and acting managing director at Sandvik Namibia, the contract is an important step in the company’s expansion strategy. Over the past year, its field service department has grown to seven trained full-service technicians in-country.

The first two Sandvik DI650i surface drill rigs in Namibia drilling on the block at the mine.
The first two Sandvik DI650i surface drill rigs in Namibia drilling on the block at the mine.

“As Sandvik Namibia gears up to support more equipment sales into the local market, we are grateful to KODO Drilling for their confidence in our innovative products and committed service,” says van Wyngaard. “With the values of KODO Drilling and Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions so closely aligned – including safety and service excellence – this is a perfect fit.”

He highlights that the DI650i, a diesel powered crawler mounted intelligent DTH rig, is designed for demanding production drilling applications in surface mining. The self-contained unit is equipped with an ergonomic iCAB operator’s cabin, fixed boom, dry dust collector and drill pipe changer – incorporating a modern design and layout.

“The rig comes with a range of new or redesigned components to boost its productivity,” he says. “It has the capacity to drill a wide variety of hole sizes from 90 mm to 165 mm. We have also run trials in Namibia with our RH560 hammer and we’ve seen exceptional performance – drilling holes from 115 mm to 203 mm.”

KODO Drilling director Vilho Hanghome says his company’s progress is based on its constant drive to deliver innovative services and perform within a safe and environmentally sustainable manner.

“Having previously procured exploration rigs from Sandvik, we have valued the equipment quality and service we have received – as these have allowed us to deliver performance within budget to our clients,” says Hanghome. “We are therefore pleased to be investing in Sandvik’s state-of-the-art DTH technology and we will rely on their high level technical support going forward.”

Van Wyngaard says the contract shows KODO’s faith in Sandvik Namibia’s ability to support its DTH offering with the exemplary aftermarket service. He points to the considerable interest the local market has shown in the delivery of the two rigs.

“After we signed off on the deal and sent the units off from our Khomanani headquarters in Kempton Park, many of our Namibian customers have noticed them on the road and posted excited comments online,” he says. “The mine where the rigs will operate is also looking forward to benefiting from the results of the new machines’ performance.”

Among the advantages that the units offer is ground level access to all daily maintenance and service points. This makes for greater safety – as technicians do not have to climb around the machine; it also adds to productivity, as quicker maintenance means less downtime. Its silent and ergonomic cabin is a leader in the market, and boasts excellent visibility for safety and operability.

Contributing to its low total cost of ownership are its intelligent hydraulic and compressor systems, which can deliver 38% to 42% better fuel efficiency. Incorporating intelligent technology, the Sandvik DI650i rigs can accommodate scalable automation from on-board options to full automation systems.

Sandvik Namibia has made encouraging progress with recent equipment sales into Namibia, explains van Wyngaard, and he looks forward to a new era of engagement with both the surface and underground mining segments.

“Building on our long-standing relationship with KODO Drilling, we look forward to many more successful ventures with them and other customers,” he says.


The global company Sandvik Rock Processing Solutions will this year integrate its two recent South African acquisitions into the Sandvik company structure – with the aim of becoming the preferred crushing and screening supplier to the mining industry in Africa.

Sandvik Rock Processing Solutions South Africa will be formed from Kwatani, acquired in December 2021, and the mining related business of Schenck Process Group (SP Mining), acquired in October 2022. According to Mats Dahlberg, Sandvik’s vice president for screening solutions in Europe, Middle East and Africa, the goal is to become a leading force in the mining industry in Africa.

“Sandvik Rock Processing Solutions will continue to have a strong customer focus, providing the screening solutions that the customer needs and asks for,” says Dahlberg. “This we will do by strengthening our regional manufacturing and engineering capabilities in South Africa.”

He highlights that this will support the company’s ambition to further strengthen its presence throughout Africa, by building on the existing Sandvik entities located throughout Africa. The process will ensure the business is close to customers, providing not only leading screening solutions but also quality service and support availability.

The Kwatani acquisition has already been very positive for the Sandvik group, with good volume growth year on year, Kwatani which was previously a family business is leveraging half a century of experience, innovation and customer loyalty.

To produce the volumes required  the company has added factory space and outsourced some production to other Sandvik facilities globally. Kim Schoepflin, Kwatani’s current CEO and daughter of founder, Gunter Vogel, believes there is no better company than Sandvik to continue the legacy created by the well-established family business and to accelerate the successful global rollout of the Kwatani technology and screening philosophy of “engineered for tonnage”.

“Over the past year we have successfully integrated the Kwatani business into Sandvik Rock Processing Solutions while achieving record growth,” says Schoepflin. “This has been thanks to our leading edge technology in vibrating equipment, our world class manufacturing facility, our family of employees and suppliers, and our valued customers across the globe.”

Dahlberg emphasises that Kwatani’s success is based on a truly customer-first perspective and a strong team spirit within the organisation, all of which is underpinned by its strong local engineering and manufacturing capabilities.

“We feel very confident that Kwatani’s legacy gives great growth opportunity to the Sandvik crushing and screening business both in Africa and globally,” he says. “Significantly, while the Kwatani screening solutions will in future be sold and branded as Sandvik, the well-respected Kwatani product name will remain both in Africa and the rest of the world.”

The other leg of Sandvik Rock Processing Solutions South Africa is the regional arm of SP Mining, one of the global market leaders in screening solutions in the industry. Dahlberg points out that this acquisition strengthens Sandvik’s capability to support customers in Africa through additional manufacturing capabilities, engineering and service capabilities.

“Together the Kwatani and SP Mining offering gives us world leading solutions for some of the largest screens available in the world, as well as an improved lifecycle offering to our customers,” he says.

Dahlberg notes that Kim Schoepflin and Kwatani General Manager Sales & Service Jan Schoepflin have decided to pursue other opportunities outside the company, and will leave Sandvik Rock Processing Solutions at the end of February 2023. Tarynn Yatras will assume the role of Head of Sales & Services for Screening Solutions in Africa and become a member of the Sandvik Rock Processing Solutions South Africa management team.

“We are grateful for the strong foundation that Kim and Jan are handing over to Sandvik with a very strong performance,” says Dahlberg. “This can be measured not only in products but also in the quality of Kwatani’s people and its positive culture. We feel confident that their legacy provides a great growth opportunity within the Sandvik crushing and screening business both in Africa and globally.”


A fluorite mine located some 100 km outside Pretoria, South Africa, is the first recipient of Sandvik Rock Processing’ first locally manufactured SmartPlant™ in Africa. Following its recent commissioning, the 300 tph plant has already met process guarantees and reached nameplate capacity. 

Sandvik opted for the mine to commission a conveyor supplier of its choice, purely to shorten the time to production and reduce costs for the customer.
Sandvik opted for the mine to commission a conveyor supplier of its choice, purely to shorten the time to production and reduce costs for the customer.

To improve efficiency and productivity, a South African fluorspar producer went into the market for a new processing plant in 2020. The SmartPlant™ concept from Sandvik Rock Processing appealed to the customer for several reasons, but mainly because of the fast delivery time, flexibility and substantial cost savings it would offer the operation.

SmartPlant™ is a range of pre-defined Sandvik SmartStations that can be mixed and matched to meet individual customer needs for maximum productivity and performance, thus reducing waiting time, maximising uptime and increasing profitability. Delivery generally takes about 22 to 30 weeks ex-works. Where there are peripheral design changes to the pre-defined SmartStations, lead times may be shorter than the standard 22 to 30 weeks.

According to Jaco Benade, Project Manager– Crushing and Screening at Sandvik, the deal was negotiated midway through the COVID-19 hard lockdown of 2020. The order was placed during Level 5 of the lockdown, with manufacturing commencing during Level 4. Despite the challenges brought about by the travel restrictions, compounded by the global supply chain disruptions, the plant was still delivered on time and within budget.

Following its recent commissioning, the 300 tph plant has already met process guarantees and reached nameplate capacity.
Following its recent commissioning, the 300 tph plant has already met process guarantees and reached nameplate capacity.

“A major talking point of the project was the short delivery time of 22 weeks ex-works at a favourable capital cost for the customer,” says Benade. “The SmartPlant™  concept allowed the customer to choose from the pre-defined SmartStations, combine and configure them to meet specific site and operational needs, with no extra design and engineering costs.”

While the designs are very much pre-defined, the SmartPlant™ still offered a great deal of flexibility for the customer. “The modular approach of the SmartPlant™ meant that the customer could tweak design parameters such as height, capacity and liner profiles, amongst others, without much concern about cost deviations and time implications,” explains Glen Schoeman, Vice President – Sub-Sahara Africa at Sandvik Rock Processing.

Regarding flexibility, Sandvik’s approach to the project was also a major plus for the customer. For example, based on its understanding of the customer’s budget and time constraints, Sandvik opted for the mine to commission a conveyor supplier of its choice, purely to shorten the time to production and reduce costs for the customer.

In line with Sandvik’s ‘safety first’ culture, the project was delivered with no lost time injuries, all the way from project inception to commissioning. “Despite the arduous conditions on site, ranging from excessive heat to wet weather conditions, the project was completed with an impeccable zero harm safety record,” says Schoeman.

The new plant comprises a full suite of Sandvik equipment, including jaw and cone crushers, screens and feeders. Informed by customer needs, Sandvik opted for a much bigger front-end of the plant, comprising a large tip area and bigger jaw crusher. The Sandvik CJ412 primary jaw crusher, which takes a 750 mm top size, is fed by a box bin and a grizzly feeder.

The plant also employs two Sandvik CH840i cone crushers for secondary and tertiary crushing, the very first units of the company’s 800i series range of cone crushers in Africa. Another first in Africa is the rotary feeder on top of the cone used to distribute material into the crusher. “This is a fantastic approach,” says Benade. “The rotary feeder turns slowly, evenly distributing material around the edges of the crusher. This reduces pressure peaks in the crusher caused by uneven feed, a common challenge in crushing plants. The rotary feeder has passed with flying colours in terms of its performance at this particular site.”

View of a customer set up at night.
View of a customer set up at night.

As the name suggests, the plant is ‘smart’ in every aspect. The CH840i cone crushers come with Sandvik’s Automation and Connectivity System (ACS) as standard. The system continuously monitors and optimises crusher performance and controls the complete lubrication system, increasing uptime and reliability. It can automatically adjust crusher settings to compensate for crushing chamber wear, ensuring consistent product size.

In addition, the SAM by Sandvik digital service supports operational excellence in the plant. “SAM by Sandvik brings people, activities and data together in an easy-to-use, seamless and collaborative way. It allows both client and OEM remote access to the plant. The system itself provides a holistic view of the plant, enabling the customer to make informed decisions and the OEM to respond proactively to any equipment health and performance issues,” concludes Benade.


Sandvik has long been a leading innovator in mining technology, and the launch of its battery electric vehicles now brings opportunities previously only dreamed about by the mining sector.

Speaking recently at the Electra Mining Africa exhibition in South Africa, Sandvik vice-president strategy and commercial Jakob Rutqvist, explained that this leap brings a full package of benefits. Not only is battery-driven equipment a practical response to health, safety and decarbonisation priorities, but it also delivers higher production rates and increased tonnages.

Sandvik’s TH665B is the world’s largest underground mining truck and is powered by an 8-tonne battery built with mining in mind.
Sandvik’s TH665B is the world’s largest underground mining truck and is powered by an 8-tonne battery built with mining in mind.

“Mines will find this technology exciting because it addresses such a range of imperatives facing mining today,” Rutqvist says. “The future of mining is more responsible, looking for lower carbon emissions and healthier working conditions. At the same time, mines need to produce more with less, and they therefore need to be more efficient in the use of resources and assets.”

He highlights that the future of mining is electric, automated and digital. Sandvik innovates in all three spheres, but its experience in electric vehicles dates back decades. The company has been supplying the sector with electric machines since the 1980s, he says, but this was cable technology. Its application was limited to those mines designed with the necessary infrastructure to support the power supply cables – and presented some operational limitations.

Electra Mining Africa 2022 saw the launch of Sandvik's TH665B a 65-tonne payload truck.
Electra Mining Africa 2022 saw the launch of Sandvik’s TH665B a 65-tonne payload truck.

At the Sandvik exhibition stand at Electra Mining Africa 2022 was an entirely new proposition: a battery electric vehicle (BEV) designed from the ground up. With a 65-tonne payload, Sandvik’s TH665B is the world’s largest underground mining truck – powered by an 8-tonne battery built with mining in mind.

“The rapid evolution of battery technology has allowed Sandvik to accelerate its BEV developments, but our strategy has been to design for mining – not just to convert designs from other sectors,” he says. “Neither did we want to simply convert our diesel-driven machines, and just replace an engine with a battery.”

With this vision, Sandvik acquired Artisan Vehicle Systems in 2019, a US-based supplier of battery electric vehicle solutions for underground mining. This was integrated into Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions, giving the company a head-start over its competitors.

“The Sandvik approach to the Fourth Industrial Revolution starts with our customers,” he says. “While it is easy for engineers to get carried away with today’s technology, we must find the value that we can add to customers’ operations – their safety, productivity and other opportunities.”

The kind of challenge to be solved was a deep level gold mine in Canada whose ventilation costs at depth was making their mineral deposit unviable. In this context, the BEV was a targeted solution that made mining possible and profitable.

Data from the Sandvik Knowledge Box can be accessed in the My Sandvik IoT hub.
Data from the Sandvik Knowledge Box can be accessed in the My Sandvik IoT hub.

“Over half of the global mining sector has committed to net zero emission goals in the coming decades, and are looking for practical ways to decarbonise their operations,” he continues. “In a typical underground mine, 50 to 60% of emissions come from the mobile fleet – and about half of this will be from the primary haulage equipment.”

Trucks and loaders are therefore a good place to start looking for solutions, and BEVs are now centre stage among the options. Rutqvist points out that by replacing a diesel vehicle, the TH665B truck could reduce a mine’s carbon emissions by 1 to 2 tonnes every day.

Building on the heritage of Artisan Vehicle Systems, Sandvik’s technology is already proven and ready for market. The Sandvik TH665B truck displayed at Electra Mining Africa 2022 completed final factory trials in California earlier in the year, and will soon be in Australia for extended field trials at a leading gold producer.

There, it will haul heavy loads at speed on long and steeply inclined ramp, to push this technology to its limits, Rutqvist explains. After the site testing is finalised, it is planned that the first commercial builds can start in 2023. Other products in the range are also ready for deployment, with a deep level South African mine already in line to receive the Sandvik LH518B compact 18-tonne loader in the next few months. The company’s over-arching strategy is to have a full range offering by 2025, covering all the major size classes with battery electric trucks and loaders.

“Beyond the decarbonisation benefits of BEVs, mines are ordering them for the improved productivity they will deliver,” he says. “Electric technology can increase tonnages moved by 20 to 30% due to the higher power levels and faster cycle times. The ground-up design has ensured a simplified driveline that also lowers operating costs.”

One of the key aspects of Sandvik’s BEV offering is that it aims to ease implementation in existing mine designs – rather than requiring extensive reconfiguration of mine infrastructure. This includes the battery-swapping functionality, allowing each unit to off-load a depleted battery and on-load a full one by itself – without the operator leaving their cab. Neither does the mine have to put any extra cranes or lifting devices in place.

The leveraging of electric, automation and digital aspects are vital to the future of mining, he argues. With regard to BEVs, this means marrying Sandvik’s established AutoMine™ technology with the exciting new directions from its Artisan acquisition.

“We are planning a staged implementation of the latest Sandvik control systems on our BEVs, starting with the LH518B loader next year,” he says. “This will be the start of the process of enabling AutoMine™ on all our BEVs.”

This will further improve machine utilisation and reduce total cost of ownership, due to automation potential and end-to-end optimisation of the load and haul process. The digitalisation focus is also crucial, and includes a current focus on telemetry.

“We are fitting all our BEVs with our Sandvik Knowledge Box™ – our standard telemetry box – for gathering machine data and transmitting it to cloud storage,” he says. “This data can then be accessed in the My Sandvik IoT hub, where it is processed into easy-to-use knowledge about the fleet’s health and performance.”

With batteries now becoming a pillar of mining’s future, there is also work underway to give BEV users detailed information in real time about the health of batteries used in mining equipment. Rutqvist highlighted that the technology road ahead holds much potential for forward-looking mines, and that Sandvik is well advanced on this journey.


With mining’s highly abrasive conditions, it is no wonder that loader buckets wear quickly; but Sandvik has the solution to extend bucket life and maintain high productivity.

The company’s Shark™ range of ground engaging tools (GET) has been evolved over two decades, delivering longer bucket life while cutting the cost of ownership by almost half over the total life of the bucket.

In South Africa for the Electra Mining Africa show in September 2022 was Darren Scott, Sandvik’s GET business development manager for south-east Asia and Africa. Scott highlights that Shark™ GET enhances the structural strength of buckets to allow more tonnes to be shifted.

Ground Engaging Tools provide the ultimate protection for your bucket, significantly extending life and reducing costly downtime.
Ground Engaging Tools provide the ultimate protection for your bucket, significantly extending life and reducing costly downtime.

“A worn bucket is highly inefficient for the whole mining operation,” he argues. “When the leading edge wears, there is reduced penetration into the muck pile, as well has higher fuel usage as the machine has to work harder.”

Another result is more wear and tear on consumables like tyres, which must exert greater force and may even spin as the machine tries to penetrate the material it is loading. The real casualty, though, is productivity; the volume of material moved can drop by 20% per cycle when a bucket is severely worn.

“In a mine that operates a number of LHDs, we estimated that worn buckets were costing the operation over 50,000 tonnes a year in lost production,” he explains. “By installing Shark™ GET the drop in loading capacity was limited to 5%, saving almost 40,000 tonnes; this translated into over US$10 million in revenue that the customer could add to their income in a year.”

Among the options in the Shark™ GET offering is the Blue Pointer™ 2 range which provides ease of mechanical attachment, while the Half Arrow range offers the simplicity and strength of a weld-on solution. Under the Shark™ brand, Sandvik also markets weld-on and mechanical heel shrouds, as well as plate profile bars and cast profile bars.

With Sandvik’s centre of excellence for GET&B in Australia, the brand’s success is also thanks to the specialised hard-wearing metallurgy that the company has developed in-house.

“The different versions of our Blue Pointer™ 2 lip protection systems, for instance, are constructed with our wear resistant Sandvik SS3000 or SS5000 steel alloy,” says Scott. “We use our Sandvik SS2000 alloy in our Half Arrow series, and our weld-on heel shrouds.”

As an indication of how popular the Shark™ brand has become, he explains that it is not only applied to Sandvik loaders but is extensively used on competitor machines.


Visitors to Sandvik’s stand at this year’s Electra Mining Africa show were thrilled by a glimpse of the Future of Mining, as they witnessed first-hand a mining breakthrough in battery technology.

The focus of everyone’s attention was undoubtedly on Sandvik’s 65 tonne TH665B battery electric vehicle (BEV), introduced to the African market en route to Australia for intensive site testing. 

According to Jakob Rutqvist, Vice-President Strategy and Commercial at Sandvik, this innovation takes mining decisively into the Fourth Industrial Revolution. 

“Many industries are well advanced in the technological trajectory of digitalisation, automation and electrification – and it is now mining’s turn,” says Rutqvist. “Fortunately, Sandvik has been positioning itself for some time to lead the industry in this journey into the Future of Mining.”

Alongside the 65 tonne BEV, Sandvik’s range includes a 50 tonne equivalent and an 18 tonne capacity battery electric LH581B underground loader. These vehicles, he says, are tested and proven as mature technology within Sandvik.

He highlights that Sandvik BEVs are faster, stronger and much less constrained than machines that are converted from a diesel design. Behind its ground-up designs is over a decade of experience in applying battery technology to mining – now integrated into the business through its 2019 acquisition of US-based Artisan Vehicle Systems.

“Our display at Electra Mining Africa demonstrates our overarching commitment to achieve a full range offering of battery electric trucks and loaders – covering all the major size classes – by 2025,” he says. Rutqvist points to the high level of interest in BEVs in Africa, with the company’s first unit – the LH581B loader – already on order from a deep-level South African gold mine.

Bolstering the Sandvik stand’s Future of Mining theme was its industry leading AutoMine® offering for underground and surface mines. With over two decades of evolution, AutoMine® is now installed on about 600 machines on mine sites worldwide, according to Kabelo Nkoana, Business Line Manager for automation and digitisation at Sandvik Southern Africa. 

“The customer feedback at Electra Mining Africa clearly shows that mines are increasingly adopting automation technology,” says Nkoana. “This stems from both the productivity benefits especially during shift change and the safety aspect – where people can be removed from hazardous areas by automating certain functions.”

The show gave Sandvik another opportunity to highlight the latest AutoMine® offerings like the integration of AutoMine® and its OptiMine® systems. The latter focuses on gathering data from all assets into one data management source, providing real-time and predictive insights to improve operations.

“Our powerful combination of automation and digitalisation has put Sandvik ahead of the pack,” he says. “Customers were also excited to hear about our latest automation next generation offering, AutoMine® Mine Mapping solution. This enables any mine vehicle to map an underground environment into three dimension and use the information to generate 3D and 2D maps of the mine. This results in faster configuration times of setting autonomous areas.

Another of Sandvik’s household name innovations at Electra Mining Africa was its Shark™ brand of ground-engaging tools and buckets (GET&B). With its centre of excellence for GET&B in Australia, the brand’s success is based partly on the specialised hard-wearing metallurgy that the company has developed in-house. 

“So popular are our Shark™ tools that about 60% of the installations are actually done on competitors’ mining equipment,” says Darren Scott, Sandvik’s Business Development Manager for south-east Asia and Africa. “This year’s Electra Mining Africa has been a great opportunity to engage face to face again, and remind the market that the Shark™ GET range is the most recognised by far.”


Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions in southern Africa has very effectively transitioned its operations to Khomanani, its new high-tech head office facility, workshop and manufacturing complex in Kempton Park, Johannesburg. The facility was officially opened by his Excellency President Cyril Ramaphosa today.

Representing an investment of R350 million, Khomanani – which accommodates approximately 500 Sandvik employees – consolidates the operations previously undertaken at five separate sites.  Sandvik’s full-time equivalent (FTE) forecast is 39 by end of December 2022 representing an 8% growth.

For the first time ever, the company now has its soft rock, hard rock and surface businesses all under one roof. Khomanani, which occupies a 62 000 m2 site, is one of Sandvik’s biggest and most advanced facilities globally and has the ability to produce underground loaders with over 60 % local content, allowing them to be designated as ‘Proudly South African’.

Developed in conjunction with Equites Property Fund, Khomanani is a bespoke facility comprising of an office building and three workshops. Two of the workshops are dedicated to the refurbishment and rebuilding of Sandvik machines – to OEM standards – from throughout the southern African region while the third is designed to assemble equipment locally. 

The workshops are equipped with 23 docking bays and a combination of cranes up to 30-t capacity to facilitate the handling of equipment. The floors can support very high loads, including continuous miners weighing over 100 tonnes. The spacious site has a carefully designed road layout which allows heavy transport vehicles to move in and out of the property easily without the need for time-consuming manoeuvring.

The machines being assembled at Khomanani are the 12-tonne capacity LS312 flameproof loader for underground coal operations, as well as the LH115 and LH208 loaders, respectively of 5,5 tonne and 7,7 tonne capacity, for underground hard rock mining. 

Not only are these machines being supplied to the southern African market but Sandvik can also export them. They are produced to the exact same quality standards as Sandvik machines manufactured at our overseas factories such as Tampere in Finland. Moreover, the company is able to produce them at a cost which is very competitive by global standards.

Sandvik is very proud of Khomanani’s ‘green’ credentials and the company has prioritised energy and water efficiency. Solar power, of course, forms an important part of the energy mix. There is already a shared solar facility which generates 500 kW and the company recently installed additional solar units in its own facility, which will be sufficient to take us entirely off the grid in the middle of the day under ideal conditions.”

Sandvik is committed to sustainability and has developed its BEV range of trucks and loaders. The TH665B truck with a payload capacity of 65 tonne was unveiled at Electra Mining Africa 2022. Commercial production of the unit, which ranks as the largest capacity BEV truck in the world, is planned for late 2023. 


Natalie Santiero, marketing manager southern Africa at Sandvik Mining & Rock Solutions.
Natalie Santiero, marketing manager southern Africa at Sandvik Mining & Rock Solutions.

Sandvik Mining & Rock Solutions will have a major presence at this year’s Electra Mining Africa exhibition, with its 385 m2 indoor stand introducing a ground-breaking battery electric vehicle (BEV) to the African mining market. In addition, Virtual Reality (VR) and simulator technology will be employed to give visitors to the stand a highly interactive experience and there will also be live demonstrations of Sandvik’s Eclipse fire suppression system, which can be fitted to the company’s drill rigs, trucks and loaders.

“The theme of our stand this year will be the ‘Future of Mining’ and will highlight the many ways in which Sandvik can assist customers to move into the world of the fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR),” says Natalie Santiero, marketing manager for southern Africa at Sandvik Mining & Rock Solutions. “We will also demonstrate how our products can contribute to a sustainable, Net Zero future. The mining industry is moving very rapidly along this path and we’re very much a part of the evolution.”

The Sandvik BEV to be introduced, which will be the biggest piece of equipment on the stand, will be the 65-tonne payload TH665B.
The Sandvik BEV to be introduced, which will be the biggest piece of equipment on the stand, will be the 65-tonne payload TH665B.

The BEV to be introduced, which will be the biggest piece of equipment on the stand, will be the 65-tonne payload TH665B. As the largest capacity battery electric truck, this is the flagship of Sandvik’s fast-expanding fleet of BEVs. The machine is at an advanced stage of development with factory testing completed and full-scale trials on a gold mine in Australia due to start later this year.

“The truck we’ll be displaying and launching at Electra Mining Africa is, in fact, the machine that will be trialled in Australia,” says Santiero. “Its appearance at the show will represent its African debut. We see the TH665B as being a critical development, given the determination of many mines to move towards emission-free equipment. It is perfectly paired with our 18-tonne capacity battery electric LH581B underground loader, which was officially launched last year. A South African gold mine has already ordered the LH518B, with delivery expected shortly.”

Sandvik Rock Processing will be showcasing the 800i series of connected cone crushers through a live demonstration of remotely connected units via the digital service SAM. The 800i series comes with Sandvik’s new generation Automation and Connectivity System (ACS), which continuously monitors and optimises crusher performance and controls the complete lubrication system, increasing uptime and reliability.

The My Sandvik portal customer portal, which will also feature on the stand, she adds, provides customers with access to information about their fleet, access bulletins and electronic manuals and allows them to request quotations and place orders anytime they need directly online.

Training, of course, is a major challenge for many mines and Sandvik will have its Digital Driller™, a compact and flexible solution to safely train operators on the company’s drills, at the show. It allows operators to learn their trade with a realistic simulator which optimises the transition to the real machine. 

Also in the digital space, Sandvik’s AutoMine® VR training simulator will be demonstrated. “This delivers a realistic AutoMine® experience for training,” says Santiero. “Visitors to the stand will be able to put on goggles and manipulate hand-held controls to experience and interact with a 3D virtual reality environment to master the complete process of the AutoMine® system start-up procedure without the need for machine or production area allocations.

Apps are an ever-present aspect of modern life and Sandvik’s Rotary Blasthole Drill Selector app will feature on the stand. It provides users with a list of recommended drill rigs based upon basic site conditions and production requirement information.

Santiero believes that a visit to the Sandvik stand should certainly have a light-hearted element to it and says that the company will be running its Service Hero game at the show. “This puts you into the shoes of one of our remote monitoring specialists,” she says. “You can see your machinery moving through the mine and the Service Hero will give alerts of any deviation from the norm. You have to act as one of our specialists and rectify the situation. It’s great fun and we think it will be a big hit with visitors.”

“Newtrax, which has been part of the Sandvik family since 2019, will also have a presence on our stand,” says Santiero. “They will be showcasing the Collision Avoidance System and Operations Management under the OptiMine® banner.”

Summing up, Santiero says that Sandvik Mining & Rock Solutions views Electra Mining Africa as a great opportunity to network with customers and showcase its extensive range of products and services, particularly those contributing to the digitalisation and automation of mining.

“There’s no question that the 4IR is with us, not just in mining but many other industries,” she observes. “Sandvik is at the forefront of this revolution and its ability to innovate will be demonstrated very strongly at the show. We’ve spent months planning our stand and we believe that it will prove very popular with visitors to the show.”


Quarry owners have given an enthusiastic reception to two new Sandvik static crushing solutions – the Reborn plant and the FastPlant™ – which both offer fast delivery times and substantial cost savings. The plants clearly fill a market need and several installations are already up and running in South Africa’s quarrying industry.

The Reborn package delivers a new factory-tested crusher that is fully compatible with the customer’s existing plant infrastructure at a fraction of the cost of a complete crusher system while the FastPlants are a range of pre-defined crushing and screening plants that reduce delivery and installation times dramatically, a key requirement with most new projects.

“South Africa has a very mature quarrying industry with a big population of relatively old crushers out in the field and yet they are often matched with infrastructure and auxiliaries – for example, hydraulic and lubrication systems, drives and motors, conveyors and electrical components – that are still perfectly serviceable,” says Glenn Schoeman, Vice President – Sub Sahara Africa at Sandvik Rock Processing Solutions. 

“This is where the Reborn plant comes into its own. Sandvik can install a new crusher on the same footprint and link it seamlessly to the existing infrastructure and auxiliaries. The new unit will be covered by an extended warranty and the package will also include comprehensive on-site training and periodic condition inspections. All told, capex savings can be as much as 40 %.”

Schoeman says that Reborn crushers can – depending on the exact model and the customer’s requirements – be equipped with all the latest technological advances from Sandvik. These include advanced automation features such as the company’s Automation and Connectivity System (ACS) which continually monitors, analyses and optimises the crusher’s performance or its game-changing E-dump valve control system, which counters the problems caused by tramp iron and other uncrushable objects encountered during the crushing process.

He also points out that even when an existing crusher is working reasonably well, a Reborn replacement will often make sense given the enormous productivity benefits and energy savings associated with new Sandvik machines. 

“Take our new 800i series range of cone crushers,” he says. “The performance improvements which come with these machines are amazing. These come not only from the ACS which is installed as standard but from other features. Bolted rather than welded top and bottom shell liners make liner changing 90 % faster, to give one example, while all the machines in the range deliver more power output from less energy compared to their predecessors.”

Turning to the FastPlant concept, Schoeman says the prime advantages of these packages are fast delivery and installation, allowing the plant owner to get into production faster, as well as economy, as the need for expensive customisation is eliminated. “Delivery will generally take about 12 weeks as opposed to two or three times this with a custom-designed plant,” he says. “The equipment is generally skid-based and comprises standard modular components but there is no compromise on quality and performance.”

Sandvik has just completed a FastPlant installation at the City of Tshwane’s Bon Accord quarry in Pretoria North, which was originally established more than a century ago to supply road building materials for Pretoria. The new upgraded facility was officially opened in early May this year and has a capacity of 270 t/h, a significant increase on the previous plant.

“A full suite of Sandvik equipment including jaw and cone crushers, screens and feeders make up the plant,” says Schoeman, who adds that the facility is fully automated. He also notes that Sandvik collaborated with several long-standing partners, mostly black empowered, on the project, who provided services such as civils, steel fabrication and erection, and electrical installation. 

Further north in Africa Sandvik is also supplying a 300 t/h FastPlant to a quarry owner in Mali. “We are certainly not limited to the South African market with our Reborn and FastPlants and we expect them to prove very popular throughout the continent,” says Schoeman.

Sandvik Rock Processing Solutions (SRP) is a new Business Area within Sandvik which became operational in January 2021. Schoeman and his team are based at Khomanani, Sandvik’s new premises in Kempton Park, Johannesburg, and have responsibility for sub-Saharan Africa. 

SRP offers a full line-up of both static and mobile crushing equipment, including cone, gyratory and jaw crushers, as well as Vertical Shaft Impact (VSI) and Horizontal Shaft Impact (HSI) crushers. Also offered is a comprehensive range of screens, which now – following Sandvik’s acquisition of Kwatani – includes large multi-slope screens for the mining industry.


With a corporate focus on facilitating predictive maintenance through the flow of real-time data on its equipment, Sandvik Mining & Rock Solutions offers various parts supply and management options to suit customers’ needs.

Among the options, according to Amith Ganasram, business line manager – parts commercial at Sandvik Mining & Rock Solutions, is Vendor Managed Inventory (VMI).

“To streamline the availability of spare parts, our people can be on site with an inventory of stock that we manage,” says Ganasram. “The main advantage here is that this makes parts available to the customer at reduced lead times.”

He notes that his team works with the customer’s operational staff on site, as well as with the service teams from Sandvik Mining & Rock Solutions. This means that uptime can be optimised, as the right parts are readily available when they are required.

Alternatively, customers may prefer to opt for a stock model that is based on consignment. Under this arrangement, the customer manages a parts holding on their own site, but they only pay for what they consume.

“We can conduct a regular audit every couple of weeks, for example, to check that the stock level is well balanced with the parts that are actually used,” he says.

Every effort is made to allow customers to leverage the value of OEM components, as their inherent quality safeguards the lifecycle of machines, minimising any unplanned downtime which could lead to lost production and revenue.

“We make it easy for customers to standardise on OEM parts, by creating bundled offerings when they purchase equipment,” he says. “This allows the customer access to high quality parts at a discount, when they take advantage of a total offering with new equipment.”

Through its advances in fleet data monitoring (FDM) solutions, Sandvik Mining & Rock Solutions offers customers digital tools to track the performance and condition of their equipment. This includes prediction of key indicators like Mean-Time-Between-Failure (MTBF), so that servicing and parts supply can be better planned. All these factors contribute to safer and smoother operations, with the lowest total cost of ownership for operating equipment.