Currently CPL is using JOY brand Shuttle Cars and Flexible Conveyor Train (FCT) in association with Heliminers in its mining operations. The FCT option has been in service since 2005 and the new generation Shuttle Cars were introduced in April, 2009.
This dissertation work proposes to make a comparative evaluation of the performance between the FCT continuous haulage system and the new 20 tonne capacity Shuttle Car system within the potash mining horizon at Cleveland Potash Limited.
CPL’s corporate plans call for enhanced production with a significant improvement in the economies of operation. Thus two main goals of the company can be noted as tonnage of material removed from the mines and the cost per tonne of material mined, keeping in mind the current operations and the proposed expansions. Introduction of the new generation Shuttle Cars and their operation during the past 8 months provides an opportunity for an objective analysis of the relative merits of the new haulage systems vis-à-vis the earlier FCT system. Thus the objectives of this study can be listed as:
To evaluate the relative advantages and disadvantages of each system in terms of suitability for i) room and pillar mining ii) long wall mining, and hence to recommend appropriate choices for future needs, based on the reserves plan, panel length, layout and potential.
The proposed study will be substantially based on the operational experience at CPL and as such limited to the recorded data, having a bearing on the objectives identified above. At the core of this study is the comparative evaluation of the two types of haulage systems in use at CPL. On the technical side, the study will be limited to general observations on the design, operation and maintenance of the two systems. On the financial side, the study will be limited to the investment costs, and operation and maintenance costs with a view to estimate the data on cost per tonne of mining.