New Gold’s New Afton mine grows Sandvik BEV fleet

New Gold has ordered four more Sandvik LH518B battery-electric loaders for its New Afton mine in British Columbia. The new battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) will join the first-ever Sandvik LH518B, which New Afton trialed in late 2020 before purchasing in February 2021, and two Sandvik Z50 BEV trucks also operating at the mine.

Located approximately 350 kilometers northeast of Vancouver and 10 kilometers from regional hub Kamloops in south-central British Columbia, the New Afton underground block cave gold-copper mine was among the industry’s earliest adopters of BEVs, which have contributed to the mine’s sustainability and productivity goals. During more than two years in operation, the first Sandvik LH518B has helped New Afton improve cycle times while reducing heat, noise and greenhouse gas emissions.

“We’ve tested and proven battery-electric technology for larger-scale adoption at New Afton, and now we’re taking the next step in our journey and growing our BEV fleet,” said Peter Prochotsky, New Afton mine manager. “We’re looking forward to receiving the new loaders. We anticipate battery-electric and autonomous equipment will continue to play a vital role in improving safety and productivity at our block cave in the years to come.”

Sandvik plans to deliver the first new Sandvik LH518B in 2023, with the remaining units to be delivered by 2025.

As a purely battery-powered loader, Sandvik LH518B will continue supporting New Gold’s efforts to improve sustainability by reducing greenhouse gas emissions underground. With a payload rating of 18 tonnes, Sandvik LH518B is the mining industry’s highest-capacity battery-powered loader. As a third-generation BEV, it has been designed from the ground up entirely around its battery system and electric driveline.

Sandvik LH518B integrates well with most underground fleets and operations, as it does not require any major changes to mine infrastructure. The loader features Sandvik’s patented self-swapping battery system, including the AutoSwap and AutoConnect functions, improving equipment safety and availability. Sandvik offers the industry’s fastest BEV “pit stop,” enabling its equipment to return to operation significantly sooner than ‘fast-charge’ mining BEVs. In less than six minutes, the self-swapping system disconnects and lowers a depleted battery, trams to pick up a fully charged battery and automatically connects it while the operator controls the swapping without leaving the equipment cabin, all without need for overhead cranes or forklifts.

Kamloops, British Columbia, January 20, 2023

For more information, please contact:
Alex Willows
Business Line Manager, Load and Haul
Sales Area Canada
Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions

Sandvik Group
Sandvik is a global, high-tech engineering group providing solutions that enhance productivity, profitability and sustainability for the manufacturing, mining and infrastructure industries. We are at the forefront of digitalization and focus on optimizing our customers’ processes. Our world-leading offering includes equipment, tools, services and digital solutions for machining, mining, rock excavation and rock processing. In 2021 the Group had approximately 39,000 employees and revenues of about 86 billion SEK in about 150 countries within continuing operations.

Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions
Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions is a business area within the Sandvik Group and a global leading supplier of equipment and tools, parts, service, digital solutions and sustainability-driving technologies for the mining and construction industries. Application areas include rock drilling, rock cutting, loading and hauling, tunneling and quarrying. In 2021, sales were approximately 41.4 billion SEK with about 15,500 employees.