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First Russian Excavator of new Generation put into operation in Solntsevsky Coal Mine

EKG-20 excavator was manufactured by Uralmashplant (Ekaterinburg) and customized by East Mining Company. The new machine is designed to excavate overburden in Solntsevsky Coal Mine. The special feature of this excavator, as compared with the similar models, is a modified bucket capacity: considering the features of homeland rocks, the capacity was increased from standard 20 CMB to 22 CBM.

In the coal mine, it is the 21st excavator, but it is the first homemade electromechanical excavator. Earlier, the company purchased and used electrohydraulic excavator by Japanese and German manufacturers. The choice preference for Russian open-mine machinery is not random. In Russian mechanical engineering, EKG-20 is a new generation excavator, the serial manufacturing of which started nearly three years ago. Not only it is similar in performance with foreign alternatives but also provides a more cost-effective excavation. The machinery is 95% made of Russian components, equipped with a modern alternating-current drive, information management system, detection system for assemblies and mechanisms, workflow parameters checkout system.

“The excavator is wholly electrical. The use of alternating-current drive considerably decreases machine operation expenses. Moreover, the life cycle of EKG-20 is 20 years, while the life cycle of electrohydraulic excavators is 7 years. All this has a positive impact on the corporate economics: according to our estimates, this excavator, as compared with electrohydraulic machines, allows us to reduce excavation of 1 CBM of overburden 2-3 times”, says Igor Kovach, the director of Solntsevsky Coal Mine.

The workers of the coal mine call the excavator a giant machine: it is 18 meters in height, over 30 meters in width and 750 tons in weight. Today is it the biggest open-mine machine in Sakhalin. EKG-20 builds up one of the highest speeds for machines of such dimensions, which is 1.1 km/h.

The assembly of excavation equipment was made on the territory of the coal mine by the manufacturing company representatives and local specialists. While welcoming the participants of the event, dedicated to the implementation of the new machine, Igor Kovach, on behalf of East Mining Company, thanked the suppliers, contractors and workers for their coordination and high-quality work, including all the people, who directly participated in successful overcoming the following stage of the company’s technical upgrading.

Igor Kovach wished an accident-free operation to the crews, which operate the excavator and the new teaming 220 tons capacity Belaz dump trucks. The excavator driving was entrusted to the specialists, having the work experience with similar type machines in the coal mines of the country’s other regions. The first excavation, which marked the launch of the machine, was made by Vasiliy Zhdanov’s crew.

“I have been driving such excavators for six years, that is, I used to drive experimental models”, Vasiliy says. “Now these are more convenient and comfortable machines. It is important, as my working shift lasts for 12 hours. The cabin is spacious and comfortable; there are a small refrigerator and a microwave oven. Eight security cameras allow us to control the situation inside and outside the excavator. There is an internal radio set designed for communication between crew members. All the information about the machine condition is shown to the operator on the display.”

The representatives of UZTM-KARTEX Managing company LLC, in which Uralmashplant is a part, also came to congratulate the staff of Solntsevsky Coal Mine on the important event.

“EKG-20 is the first machine of such class in Sakhalin”, Konstantin Smirnykh, the excavation equipment sales director of UZTM-KARTEX, says. “In our sales territory, Solntsevsky Coal Mine became the furthest point. And the fact, that this machine will be used on the major coal mining company in the Far East, is an important event for us. This delivery is a prime example of import substitution in one of the key industries for the Russian economy.”

An annual technical upgrading of Solntsevsky Coal Mine allows showing higher rates in coal mining. Together with this, East Mining Company upgrades other industrial facilities, providing coal mining and shipping on the territory of Uglegorsk region. In 2019, the company will invest around 11.5 bln Rubles to the development of these branches.