Last December, a core group of FLSmidth employees responded to a potentially detrimental failure at a mine site in Papua New Guinea. Their actions exemplify FLSmidth’s devotion to customers—anytime, anywhere.
An incident was reported to FLSmidth’s 800FLSmidth Global Customer Support Center via the Supercenter in Perth, WA, Australia, requesting help with a problem at Hidden Valley, Papua New Guinea (PNG). The control interface panel for the local Raptor® 900 cone crusher had been damaged by a lightning strike, and when they put in the spare HMI the system wouldn’t start. This led to a possible downtime of more than one day.
Despite a slow Internet connection at the mine site, the 800FLSmidth team was immediately able to begin troubleshooting the problem to find a resolution. Through a remote connection to the site, FLSmidth employees were able to identify the issue. Four hours after the incident was reported, the issue was resolved. The technical issue was solved in a collaborative effort between several FLSmidth support centers, which demonstrates the unique capabilities of FLSmidth’s global expert support team that is available 24/7.
Coordination of FLSmidth employees located in Pinkenba, the Perth Supercenter, Chennai, and Denmark resulted in a speedy solution. Hidden Valley was impacted only a few hours and significant financial losses were mitigated. The critical importance of coordinating global solutions, remote access to mine sites and aftermarket support packages, including PlantLine agreements on every project, was underscored in this situation.
Brent Hill, FLSmidth Customer Services Regional Manager – PNG, who works in the Pinkenba, Australia office, has developed a close working relationship with Hidden Valley. He and Murray Kent, FLSmidth Customer Service Sales Manager—South-East Asia, were in contact with Hidden Valley throughout the whole process, even with the nine-hour time difference.
“Our relationship with Hidden Valley has become a lot closer in the past 12 months due to our large selection of capital and consumable products that we have to offer, from the very large to very small," Mr. Hill said. "Hidden Valley values us as a partner in business. We are just not selling them gear. It’s more than that. They are asking us for process advice in flotation recovery or wear products, and they are mentioning how good we are to fellow general managers within the PNG mining community.”
The best feedback comes directly from Hidden Valley’s Stan Bierschenk, EGM – Engineering & Asset Management, OLC & Crusher Manager. “Gents, just a word of appreciation for the effort and time spent last night to restore the new HMI and to get the secondary crusher running again.”
Hidden Valley is currently considering a PlantLine™ agreement, which would guarantee fast support in case of future incidents requiring FLSmidth's assistance.
PlantLine is a new service program that gives clients the option of letting FLSmidth assume more responsibility for maintaining automation systems and remotely monitoring installed equipment solutions. PlantLine Critical is an additional layer of support that includes live support by calling the 800FLSmidth team. PlantLine Critical is the first line of defense against costly system downtime via a combination of remote and on-site services. The unexpected equipment failure at Hidden Valley is exactly why FLSmidth offers aftermarket support like PlantLine agreements.
CONTACT: Steve Cackett
The Hidden Valley mine site is located in the remote highlands (2,600 m ASL) of the Morobe Province of Papua New Guinea. The Morobe Mining Joint Venture is, as the name suggests, a joint venture between Harmony Gold (SA) and Newcrest Mining in Australia. Expected annual mine production is +250,000 oz of gold and 4 M oz of silver. This open-pit mine, consisting of two pits located 5 km apart, is expected to have a 14-year mine life based on current reserves. Initial construction started in 2007, with the first gold pour being achieved in June 2009. Mine ore is delivered to the crusher stations via haul truck and then carried to a processing plant or stockpile area via conventional trough or pipe conveyors.
FLSmidth supplied an impressive list of equipment to the Hidden Valley Mine: six (6) WEMCO® 225 flotation cells, one (1) Raptor 900 cone crusher, one (1) 4.5 km overland pipe conveyor and two (2) LUDOWICI® VE screens (SAG and carbon recovery). Several pieces of equipment use FLSmidth PLC (programmable logic controller) and HMI (human machine interface) equipment.