News & Events

Efficient Coal Handling

In South Africa’s Mpumalanga province, the Makoya Group provides mobility services to the steam coal business sector, for example, exporters, traders and South African power stations. 

Coal is transported from the mines to what the company terms “Multi-User Terminals,” where it is stockpiled prior to loading on rail cars to transport the fuel to the ports and power stations.
Makoya runs an extensive fleet of wheel loaders to stockpile and load coal. To optimize available spaces, material must be piled high. This required operating personnel to build ramps in aiding the stacking of the coal.

Makoya representatives worked with Fuchs and its dealer Supalift Trading CC to offer a more efficient solution for coal stockpiling. Fuchs recommended the 70-tonne class MHL 380 as a pilot in material handling. The unit, equipped with an optional short 9.6-m boom and 8-m stick, has a reach of 18.5-m. This allowed operators to efficiently stockpile coal much higher than the wheel loader, enabling Makoya to safely maximize the use of available storage area and simultaneously rake in savings in time and fuel consumption.
Equipped with a 6m3 two-clamshell attachment, the powerful MHL 380 pilot unit promises to replace at least two wheel loaders. This brings a certain savings on the company’s staff costs.

“We are still evaluating, but early calculations show that it requires only 24 litres of diesel to move approximately 700 tonnes of coal with the MHL 380,” says Kenny Malgas, CEO for Makoya Group. “We are saving 75 litres of fuel per hour because of the reduction in the number of units per application.”
Beyond the fuel savings, specific machine features are helping Makoya’s machine operators to increase loading efficiency and boost machine uptime. The MHL 380 handler’s spacious cab hydraulically adjusts to a 6,2-m maximum eye level, allowing the operator to easily see over the sides of the rail wagons even when fully laden.

The machine’s innovative cooler arrangement includes separate hydraulic oil and engine cooling systems, which maximizes cooling efficiencies of both systems. With its temperature-controlled fan speed, the MHL 380 reliably operates in ambient temperatures reaching 50° Celsius, critical for operating in the extreme South African heat.
Once the pilot and test phase of the MHL 380 is complete, Makoya’s strategy is to forward integrate its services by introducing the MHL 380 to power station and port operations because of its high efficiency in moving and handling materials.

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