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Rolls-Royce, Flanders to develop hybridized mining trucks

Rolls-Royce, Flanders to develop hybridized mining trucks
Photo courtesy of Rolls-Royce

Rolls-Royce and Flanders Electric have agreed to develop a retrofit solution for hybridizing mining trucks with mtu engines, batteries and hybrid control systems, and Flanders drive train solutions. The two companies have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) enabling them to offer a scalable retrofit kit for hybridizing mining trucks in a wide range of mining applications.

Saving fuel and reducing CO2 footprint

Rolls-Royce and Flanders plan to leverage their extensive experience to offer customers hybrid solutions that aim to save fuel and reduce the C02 footprint of mining trucks as well as optimizing vehicle power performance and efficiency, enabling more climate-friendly and safer mining operations.

“Improving our customers’ operations, lowering their costs while enhancing their energy footprint, is a win for the mining industry and for the environment as a whole. We are excited to partner with Rolls-Royce Power Systems to deliver an industry leading hybrid power solution that will help our customers achieve their energy or carbon reduction goals,” said John Oliver, CEO and chairman of the board of Flanders.

“We are excited to shape the mining industry’s sustainable future together with Flanders and further leverage our advanced hybrid technologies, which are already proven in the rail industry. Together we will offer our customers integrated, future-oriented, hybrid solutions,” said Scott Woodruff, vice president, Mining and Oil & Gas, Rolls-Royce Power Systems.

Mining truck hybrid concept

The mining truck hybrid concept recovers braking energy, using the mtu EnergyPack battery system. This energy is then fed back to power the wheel motors, allowing the diesel engine to be downsized. The smaller engine reduces fuel consumption and C02 emissions by up to 30%, helping mining customers to achieve their emissions reduction targets, while optimizing their operations. 

The hybrid concept also includes the DC/DC converters which interface the battery system with the DC link of the truck. The system is highly modular and scalable for trucks of any size, working anywhere in the world.

mtu diesel engines have been setting the standards for performance and fuel-efficiency in mining applications around the globe for decades. They reliably power vehicles for underground and surface mining, including loading vehicles such as excavators and wheel loaders; transport vehicles such as haul trucks or blast hole drilling rigs; and other mining machines — diesel-mechanic, diesel-electric or diesel-hydraulic.

Hybrid solutions are already part of the mtu portfolio. The mtu Hybrid PowerPack is set to enter rail service in the UK and helps customers reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions by up to 25%. The drive solution and its mtu batteries — which can also be used on hybrid mining trucks — offer high performance, reliability and maintenance friendliness while conforming to the highest safety standards.

About Rolls-Royce Power Systems

Rolls-Royce’s business unit Power Systems is a leading provider of advanced integrated and sustainable power solutions for a wide variety of applications, including mining equipment. Headquartered in Friedrichshafen in southern Germany, Rolls-Royce Power Systems employs around 9,000 people. Its product portfolio includes mtu-brand high-speed engines and propulsion systems for ships, power generation, heavy land, rail and defence vehicles and for the oil and gas industry, as well as diesel and gas systems and battery containers for mission critical, standby and continuous power, combined generation of heat and power, and microgrids.

About Flanders

Flanders, based in Evansville, Indiana, U.S.A., is an industry leader in the development and sale of electric motors and generator systems, as well as automation and control systems for heavy industrial applications. The company has more than 70 years of experience in engineering, manufacturing, and servicing large electrical rotating equipment and systems that bring massive machines to life. Today, Flanders develops some of the most advanced controls and software for heavy machines in the connected era of big data and continues to provide its trusted hands-on repair of motors and electrical systems. Flanders is owned by Center Rock, a Midwest-based private equity firm focused on building leading industrial companies in the lower middle market.