For mine operators, carrying out the primary crushing below ground and directly at the working face is generally an attractive solution that offers a number of advantages compared to open cast mining. Underground operations place particular demands on the processing technology especially in terms of compactness, mobility and maintenance friendliness.
Above all, machines for the first in-mine crushing stage need to fulfill special requirements resulting from the specificity of these mining methods. The working faces and processing sites are relocated relatively often. In order to minimize costs, the underground plant sites (aka caverns) are kept as small as possible. Each additional meter in the height of such a cavern entails high investment costs so the comparatively large height of conventional hard rock crushers is disadvantageous.
This resulted in four important requirements for the new crusher: a flat, compact design, transportability, easy underground maintenance, and the ability to process hard rock with a feed size of up to 2,000 x 1,500 x 1,000 mm.
In ore processing the strength and quartz content of the rock are mostly high, which places high demands on the machine in terms of wear resistance and easy interchangeability of the crushing elements. Moreover, as the crusher may well be overloaded due to foreign bodies or other causes during the mining process, a suitable overload protection has to be installed.
The patented design of the ERC® featuring a roll mounted eccentrically between the crushing chamber and the integrated screening chamber results in greater efficiency and productivity, which allows mining operations to be optimized, better integrated and automated. The ERC® was tested in the crushing of andesite, a material with strengths of up to 200 MPa that are similar to many copper and iron ores. Its characteristics make it ideal for effective primary crushing of hard rock and ores in any mining industry.
Interview about the functionality of the ERC® with Frank Drescher