Bucyrus International, Inc, and Siemens, who have worked together to supply heavy excavators to the surface mining industry for 30 years, have extended their period of collaboration for another ten years. Their most recent joint innovation is the world’s first large walking dragline with a complete AC-IGBT (Isolated Gate Bipolar Transister) drive system. This dragline also carries the first “D3” (Direct Drive Dragline) gearless AC hoist and drag drive system. Bucyrus and Siemens will continue working together to offer a comprehensive range of products for the technically demanding surface mining machine market. Thanks to the electronics and electrical drive systems provided by Siemens, these heavy machines are more productive, require less maintenance, and have provided drive availabilities of higher than 98 per cent.

Bucyrus, headquartered in South Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA, is a leading manufacturer of surface mining machines. Within the framework of their cooperation, Bucyrus and Siemens have supplied nearly 150 shovels and draglines to surface mine operators around the world. Most of these excavators are being used in Canada, the U.S, South America, Australia and China.

A central feature of the new 10-year contract is the continued development and supply of shovels and draglines excavators with electric drives and control technology from Siemens. As early as 1976, Bucyrus decided in favor of AC drive systems for their machines, and Siemens was the first company to equip excavators with AC drive and control technology. During the last 30 years, these systems have gone through several technology iterations and are now the industry benchmark in this machines category of machinery. Bucyrus and Siemens will remain trendsetters in this market.

The shovel drive systems today use AC drives based on IGBT (Isolated Gate Bipolar Transistor) Traction technology. This system solution is not only more flexible and has good control qualities but also provides higher operational safety and reliability as compared to other earlier systems.