Epiroc recently announced that it has agreed with Swedish construction company Skanska to field test the world’s first battery-electric drill rig for surface operations. This trial is a milestone in the journey towards zero-emission drilling in surface mines and quarries around the world.
The design of the new machine is based on Epiroc’s SmartROC T35 surface drill rig, which is aimed to enhance the environmental standards of quarries and larger construction sites. In addition to zero emissions in operations, the rig comes with a range of smart features, options and enhanced automation solutions for optimal safety, reliability and performance.
Skanska will test the rig at a quarry near Stockholm, Sweden. The machine, manufactured in Örebro, Sweden, is scheduled to arrive at the quarry in September. Epiroc will announce later when the SmartROC T35 E will be available on the market.
“Epiroc has bold sustainability targets in place for the year 2030,” said Helena Hedblom, Epiroc’s president and CEO. “With the SmartROC T35 E we are taking a large step towards reaching our promise to offer a full range of emissions-free products for quarries and large construction applications.”
“A milestone has been reached and a new opportunity has come to reduce our climate impact,” said Johan Eliasson, project manager at Skanska Industrial Solutions AB. “I am very happy about the long collaboration between Epiroc and Skanska, and it is exciting to be able to do this project together.
“Both companies have set bold environmental goals – this project really takes a great step towards Skanska’s goal of being completely climate neutral by 2045, which is an important part of our promise to build a better society.”
Epiroc said its battery-electric solutions are attracting strong interest from the market. Customers’ benefits include emissions-free operations, lower noise pollution and vibrations, and higher productivity.
The machines play a vital role in Epiroc’s ambitious sustainability goals for 2030, which include halving the CO2e emissions in operations and from sold products. In 2021, the goals were validated by the Science Backed Targets initiative as being in line with keeping global warming at a maximum 1.5° C, consistent with the latest climate science and the goal of the Paris Climate Agreement.
Epiroc plans to offer its complete fleet of underground mining equipment as battery-electric versions by 2025, and its full fleet for surface operations as battery-powered versions by 2030.