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Open pit mining in Canada to see the first electric-powered heavy vehicle

Nov 5, 2020

A huge step towards the electrification of open pit mining

The government of Canada and Quebec announced a $ 3.6M investment for the development of 100% electric mining vehicles on November 2. 
Two companies from Northwestern Quebec are involved in the project.
The project provides for the development of the largest battery ever developed in Quebec. This is a 400 KW / H battery capable of powering a 40-ton truck and able to operate in an open-pit mine in northern Quebec. Adria Power Systems , of Rouyn-Noranda, will be responsible for the battery assembly and the development of a high power charging station.

Manufacture Adria Inc. (Adria Power Systems ®) was Ranked as one of Canada’s Fastest-Growing Companies on the 2019 Growth 500 list. Canadian Business unveils an annual list of Canada’s Fastest-Growing Companies and on September of 2019 Canadian Business and Maclean’s today ranked Manufacture Adria Inc. (Adria Power Systems ®) on the annual Growth 500, the definitive ranking of Canada’s Fastest-Growing Companies. Produced by Canada’s premier business and current affairs media brands, the Growth 500 ranks Canadian businesses on five-year revenue growth. There is no doubt Manufacture Adria Inc. (Adria Power Systems ®) deserved the spotlight.  
Jean-François Couillard, President of Manufacture Adria Inc. (Adria Power Systems ®) said in a statement, “Adria is honored to be on the Growth 500 ranking. This achievement reflects the true implication of all our team members, the faithfulness of our existing customers, and the trust of our new customers. We are very proud!’’.

The mining industry is in transition towards a low environmental impact mode of operation in Canada and abroad. The mines and their key industry support groups are working to replace diesel vehicles which are responsible for significant greenhouse gas emissions and generate high operating costs. Currently, there are no electric-powered heavy-duty trucks on the market that meet the difficult operational and climate needs of open-pit mines. To ensure the success of this major project, Fournier et Fils, a recognized operator in the mining sector, will provide the project with a Western Star 6900XD truck with a 40-ton loading capacity, as well as its technical experts, who will assist the electrification experts in converting the truck to accommodate the new components. The motorization aspects will be developed by Dana TM4.
IVI will design the battery based on the new recommendations of the Global Mining Guidelines (GMG), and the NRC will evaluate and test it to ensure it meets the specific criteria of being inexpensive and adapted to the harsh conditions of open-pit mines. The objective is to minimize operating costs, and this electric mining vehicle will be able to operate year-round, even in winter. To efficiently meet the truck's power requirements and charging times, a high-power charging infrastructure will be developed by Adria Power Systems, which will also be in charge of battery assembly.
The electric mining truck will generate highly positive environmental impacts for the mining. Nouveau Monde Graphite, one of the project's mining partners, plans to use 12 electric trucks to save more than 80,000 liters of diesel per year, thus reducing its GHG emissions by more than 220 tons (according to preliminary estimates). The company, located in Saint-Michel-des-Saints, aspires to become the world's first 100% electric open-pit mine.

The prototype is expected to make its first real-world test runs as early as spring 2022 at a Fournier et Fils quarry and at the Nouveau Monde Graphite site.
"To overcome the climate challenge, we need to replace fossil fuels with hydroelectricity as much as possible. I therefore commend the commitment shown by the partners in this project to create the first 100-percent electric heavy vehicle to be used in open pit mining. We are pleased to support this project that falls perfectly in line with our government's vision to electrify the Quebec economy, the transportation sector in particular, with the dual objective of reducing our greenhouse gases and stimulating our economy. Given our desire to foster sustainable mining development in Quebec, we will be following this project with great interest," says Benoit Charette, Quebec's Minister of the Environment and the Fight Against Climate Change.


Tags: Quebec / Green Mining / Battery Metals / All Articles