FLSmidth leads the world in ultra-large equipment for underground shaft mining.
The Mine shaft systems (MSS) team is a fairly recent amalgamation of the Canadian shaft equipment business and the South African mine hoist business. MSS is a part of the FLSmidth Material Handling division.
The main business of MSS is outfitting mine shafts and hoisting plants, which include mine hoists, cages for transport of men and materials, ore skips, sheave wheels, underground load-out facilities and all safety and ancillary equipment for mine shaft operation. MSS provides equipment customized to the size and scale of particular mines, and as mines are getting larger, FLSmidth has become the global expert on designing and supplying some of the world's largest hoists and mine shaft equipment.
In line with the industry's "go big" philosophy, MSS has recently completed the largest man cage in the world with a capacity to carry 300 miners for PT Freeport in Indonesia. The cage will be installed in a sub-vertical shaft that extends deeper below the existing shaft. The cage has all of the latest communications and monitoring technology on board. The challenge of the project was to get it to the underground hoist. To do this, the cage was designed in 28 pieces to be transported underground for final assembly.
FLSmidth® mine shaft systems has gained expertise and a solid reputation building ultra-large shaft equipment for the potash industry in Canada, and also for the world’s largest mine hoists in South Africa. This expertise is now sought out by customers and consultants globally.
Another large project under construction is a 65-ton ore skip for Rio Tinto's Oyu Tolgoi mine in Mongolia. This will be the largest ore skip in the world. The large 6.5-meter Impala 16-hoist project in South Africa has set an industry standard and was awarded based on FLSmidth's reputation for innovative engineering and attention to detail and service.
Many of these projects would have been difficult to achieve if not for FLSmidth's strategy to synergize its global operations. The strengths of the South African and Canadian offices combine to form the single operation that is Mine Shaft Systems. The product lines complement each other perfectly, and both offices have concentrated on cross-training and opened up new markets for each other's products. In addition, there has been excellent cooperation with other FLSmidth offices in areas with large potential, such as Mexico and Peru. This cooperation has led to significant orders in areas previously difficult to approach due to language and cultural barriers. Latin America is the target for immediate expansion; however, Australia and Asia are also future targets.
We are recognizing more opportunities for continued product integration with other FLSmidth products, such as Fuller-Traylor™, Buffalo™ and Ludowici®. We have also continued to develop new products internally and the industry is accepting them as part of the full FLSmidth offering.
FLSmidth can now offer products and services normally provided by five or six companies. The FLSmidth One Source approach allows for a fully integrated supply of material handling and mineral processing offerings from one responsible company.
CONTACT: Mark Wale