EC Mining of Zambia is to install two Condra Class Three portal cranes as part of the comprehensive modernisation programme underway at the Mopani Copper Mines Mufulira metallurgical complex.
South African manufacturer Condra (Pty) Limited designed and manufactured the equipment at its Germiston works.
Based in Kitwe, EC Mining is Condra’s sole agent for the Copperbelt, undertaking installation and maintenance, and acting as the conduit for orders taken on both sides of the DRC/Zambian border.
The cranes will service part of the upgraded electro-winning plant within the complex, handling anode copper plate as well as cathode starter sheets and the pure end product.
To be installed astride a railway line servicing wagon trains within the refinery, the cranes have been designed with double cantilevers off their 4.5 m spans to pack and stack sheet product adjacent to the tracks. On-site space constraints necessitated the cantilever design, which differs from the usual approach of a portal span wide enough to cover the specified working area.
These cranes are notably fast in relation to their mass, with a longtravel speed of 32 m/min, despite legs packed with steel punchings to accommodate a maximum load located at the cantilever’s 2.5 m extremity. A 3 ton K-Series hoist delivers a lift speed of 6 m/min, and a cross-travel speed of 18 m/min.
Condra’s cranes for the electrowinning plant are the latest in a series of orders the company has been awarded for materials handling equipment associated with the Zambian mine’s development.
Others recently supplied via EC Mining include a 10 tonner for MCM’s Nkana leaching plant, a 25 tonner for the winder house at Mopani Nkana’s south ore body, and a 25 tonner for Mufulira underground mining.