The Australians have found a way to boost dragline efficiency by 25% per shift. New Universal Dig and Dump (UDD) technology unveiled this week provides precise bucket control during all modes of operation thanks to a rigging change plus a unique computer control system. Draglines equipped with UDD can dig and dump anywhere under the boom.
The technology was developed by the BHP BILLITON MITSUBISHI ALLIANCE (BMA). It has been field-proven on Dragline 23 at BMA's Peak Downs coal mine in Australia. Since March 2002, this dragline has a proven 25% increase in productivity. BMA is so pleased with the technology that it is preparing to retrofit more of its draglines at the mine.
In addition to the operating flexibility of UDD, the new rigging is less than half the weight of conventional rigging. This means that a medium-sized UDD dragline can move up to 13 tonnes more dirt per pass without placing additional stress on the machine.
The UDD technology was developed over three years by the Co-operative Research Centre for Mining Technology and Equipment, headquartered in Brisbane, Australia. The retrofit of Dragline 23 involved companies such as Team Engineering, Hatch, Hofmann Engineering, P&H MinePro Services, REB Engineering, DLE Electrical Services, and Tritronics.
A large selection of pictures featuring the UDD is available in the news section of www.cmte.org.au