Canadian Mining Journal


MINE AUTOMATION NEWS World’s Largest Underground Mine Selects Sandvik Tamrock

SANTIAGO, Chile Opened in 1904, CODELCO's El Teniente copper-molybdenum producer is considered the world's larges...

SANTIAGO, Chile Opened in 1904, CODELCO’s El Teniente copper-molybdenum producer is considered the world’s largest underground mine. As part of its US$1.1-billion expansion to 480,000 t/y Cu from 350,000 t, Codelco has ordered two AutoMine systems from SANDVIK TAMROCK of Sweden.

The technology will be used to automate the load-haul-dumper (LHD) fleets at the Pipa Norte and Diabalo Regimiento mines. Three LHDs will be commissioned by December 2003 at Pipa Norte, and two machines will be delivered to Diablo Regimiento also in December.

The AutoMine system has at its heart the 7-m3 Toro 0010C LHD. They will be fully automated and run from a single control room outside the mines. Loading at the drawpoint will be accomplished using remote control aided by video cameras. The guidance and traffic management system will allow the LHDs to run autonomously to the dump point and back to the drawpoint. Each unit has its own communications system and onboard monitoring system. All information collected and used by AutoMine is interfaced with the mines’ production and maintenance systems.

The AutoMine technology will set revolutionary standards of performance, cost-cutting and safety for underground mucking and haulage, according to Sandvik Tamrock. For further information, e-mail Timo Soikkeli at Sandvik Tamrock Oyj,

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