5 of the biggest, loudest mining mega machines
If you had a penchant for Tonka trucks as a youngster, the chances are that you’ll feel a child-like excitement at the sight of a giant, earth-shaking, mining vehicle roaring around an open pit.
Of course, these mega machines make quite some racket when they’re in operation. And at IAC we specialise in noise control solutions for mining vehicles, ranging from attenuators, exhaust systems, accosting panels and lining, as well as Thermowrap thermal insulation blankets.
Here are five of the world’s biggest, loudest mining trucks — some of which we work with…
5: Komatsu D575A-3SD Dozer
Bulldozers may not be the biggest beasts in operation at a mine, but they’re definitely amongst the most powerful, due to all the soil spreading, rough grading, levelling and heavy-duty cleaning up they have to do. One of the biggest in the world is the Komatsu ‘Super Dozer’, which weighs 153 tonnes and is capable of generating 1167 horsepower. Its headline feature is its giant blade, which is 3.6m high and 7.4m wide — that’s quite literally big enough to move mountains. .
4: Caterpillar 797F
The Cat is able to transport a load of up to 400 tonnes, making it one of the biggest dump trucks in the world. It’s as big as a two-and-a-half story, 3000 square foot house, and is powered by a 106 litre V20 diesel engine that sends 4,000 horsepower through its ginormous rear wheels. That helps it achieve a top speed of around 42 mph, so you’d certainly want to give way if it was driven towards you at that pace. Loaded, it weighs more than 600 tonnes, which is roughly equivalent to three fully boarded passenger planes.
3: Belaz 75710
If you thought the Caterpillar 797F was the most monstrous of all dump trucks, think again. The Belarus-made Belaz can carry a load of up to 496 tonnes and to help with that it has eight giant tyres, each measuring more than four metres in height (that’s double the height of most basketball players), and an engine that generates 24 times more power than a Formula 1 car.
2: Bucyrus RH400
The world needs minerals. And to keep up with demand miners use some pretty big diggers — because let’s face it, chipping away at an open pit with a hand shovel simply won’t cut it. One of the biggest is Caterpillar’s Bucyrus RH400, which weighs in at a mammoth 980 tonnes and holds 34m³ in a single scoop — that’s roughly the same as eight builders’ skips. These beasts are powered by two Cummins K1500E engines with a combined output of 2,520 horsepower.
1: Bagger 293
The Bagger 293 isn’t just the largest machine ever used in the mining industry, it’s the most gargantuan land vehicle ever constructed by humans. Built in 1995, this feat of German engineering uses its vast cutting wheel to strip away a section of earth, before a conveyer belt removes the debris so it can be hauled away. The Bagger’s 12 caterpillar tracks help it move around the site… slowly (its top speed is 10 metres per minute).