Brazilian miner Vale has entered a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with XCMG Construction Machinery for the supply of mining and infrastructure equipment to help accelerate zero-carbon mining operations.

The MoU, which will facilitate the supply of zero-emission and autonomous equipment, comes as the two firms seek to expand the use of electric battery-powered vehicles.

According to the agreement, XCMG will deliver equipment prototypes, including two electric battery-powered mining haul trucks to Vale.

Vale plans to test these zero-emission trucks, each weighing up to 72t, at its operations in Minas Gerais, Brazil; and Indonesia.

These trucks are planned to be delivered in the first half of next year.

The Brazilian mining firm also plans to trial another electric truck weighing up to 240t at a later date.

Vale global business solutions executive vice-president Alexandre Pereira said: “This initiative is in line with Vale’s goal of reducing its carbon emissions of scope one and two by 33% by 2030 and achieving net-zero emissions by 2050 and reinforces our ambition to lead the road to low-carbon mining.

“We also see this partnership with XCMG Machinery as one more important step in the deepening of our long-term and win-win partnership with China, which dates back to 1973, when we sent our first iron ore shipment to this country.”

XCMG Construction Machinery is a unit of China’s heavy machinery manufacturing company Xuzhou Construction Machinery Group (XCMG).

Earlier this year, Vale said that it implemented technology developed by Schneider Electric and information technology company Aveva to unify its operations in Brazil.

The firm deployed Schneider’s EcoStruxure Control Expert – Asset Link, which is integrated with the Aveva System Platform and Schneider Modicon M580 automation controller.