International Mining (July 2022)

The ‘one-stop shop’

GHH Group has long specialised in the supply of products and services for the low-profile and narrow-vein mining space, with a product offering that, it says, is one of the most comprehensive and diverse around.

This includes low-profile loaders and low-profile rigs, auxiliary machines, scalers and a large range of utility vehicles with various cassette offerings, making GHH a “one-stop-shop” for low-profile mining.

GHH currently has the SLP-3H and SLP-14H – the latter being the largest low-profile loader on the market – running in low-profile operations in Europe. The new SLP-14E electric tethered loader, based on the diesel-powered SLP-14H, is due to be released later this year.

In the PGM minerals and chrome operational space in southern Africa, the SLP-5, SLP-6 and SLP-8 low-profile loaders support operations in either production or development operations depending on the customer-specific tonnage and size requirements. Although the products are standard, they are customised where needed and updated as regulatory needs and legislation drive industry change, GHH says.

Two of the company’s new SLP-5.2 LHDs were recently dispatched from the company’s GHH Mining Machine’s facility in South Africa, with plans for them to be deployed at the Anglo American Platinum-majority owned Mototolo mine on the renowned Bushveld Complex. These machines come with not only an air-cooled engine offering but also an innovative water-cooled engine design – a first for GHH Mining Machines.

To support the low-profile primary fleet of GHH loaders, mining operations can rely on the Mine Master range of low-profile equipment, including drill rigs, roof bolters and auxiliary machines. The FLP1400 and Roof Master 1.4 are ideal for development works and roof support in sections as low as 1.6 m with optimum drilling coverage and performance, GHH says.

Low-profile room and pillar operations, meanwhile, can benefit from using the Face Master 1.7 and Roof Master 1.7, both of which are engineered for excavations as low as 1.9 m. These machines come in different configurations depending on market demand.

The Face Master 1.7K for KGHM Mine, for example, boasts a spacious air-conditioned closed cabin with excellent visibility and ergonomics, providing a high level of operator comfort and associated performance, GHH says.

The Face Master 1.7R with rotary drilling system is an optimal option for soft-rock applications, while the Face Master 1.7D can tram and drill on diesel engine power alone.

The Roof Master 1.7, manufactured in cooperation with J.H. Fletcher, is designed to install both mechanical and resin bolts at lengths of 1.6 m, 1.8 m and 2.6 m, with the “Man-in-Position” system allowing carrying works by a single operator. For high-temperature working conditions, the machine can be equipped with a spacious air-conditioned cabin.

Battery-electric technology has also come into the GHH Group’s low-profile portfolio, with Mine Master offering a battery-driven drill rig and bolter. Based on the same chassis for simplified maintenance, with 120 kWh batteries on board, the Face Master 1.7KE and Roof Master 1.8KE are the perfect choice for low-profile operations where ventilation cost and operator wellbeing are of great concern, GHH says.

Mine Master also offers a “customer-dedicated solution” of two auxiliary machines designed to place temporary hydraulic props for additional roof support when mining in confined spaces – the SWOI 1.4 and SWOI 1.7. These machines are designed for temporary roof support works where the operator inserts the temporary support prop between the roof and the floor, and the operator adjusts its height by means of hydraulic hoses through which an emulsion (a mixture of water and hydraulic oil) is pumped.