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Mincon offers automation in Chile

When it comes to developing the world’s leading rock drilling solutions, Mincon engineers focus on efficiency and performance to ensure that our tools remain The Driller’s Choice. But on the ground, at drill sites across the world, Mincon has dedicated service teams that collaborate closely with customers to understand their requirements and implement solutions that optimise their drilling operations.

One example of this is a new rod-handling system that was specified and provided by Mincon for use at the Antofagasta Minerals Los Pelambres copper mine in Chile. Mincon provides a complete service solution at the Los Pelambres mine, with a full-time team on the ground overseeing and supporting the drilling operations. Mincon supplies the complete drill string for blasthole drilling operations, including rotary drill bits, drill rods, bit subs, top subs, shock subs, and deck bushings. While Mincon engineers focus on innovation and continuous improvement for all products, the service teams focus on innovation in operations.

To that end, the Mincon team at Los Pelambres opted to use an automated rod-handling system to enhance safety and reduce installation time for the drill string components, ultimately reducing the overall drilling time at the mine. The automated rod-handling system – the first of its kind in use in Chile – reduces handling time by 50%, resulting in less downtime and more efficient drilling. It also has safety benefits, as service teams do not have to handle complex and heavy equipment by hand. This automated rod-handling system also requires fewer staff to be present, ensuring compliance with new health and safety precautions related to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Patricio Lagarini, Regional Manager, Mincon Chile, said:

“Mincon already has the best drilling tools on the market, but we were not happy to stand still. We thought outside the box to improve efficiency and safety at Los Pelambres, and this automated rod-handling system thrilled our customer.”

Since its introduction earlier in 2020, other mining customers in Chile have taken note of this innovative solution introduced by Mincon. With the goal of improving efficiency at drilling operations and providing world-class customer service, it is clear why Mincon has established itself as The Driller’s Choice.

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