Heavy work in paradise – Four GEDA lifts on a nickel mine in New Caledonia

The small group of islands of New Caledonia is located in the South Pacific, east of Australia. The country has a land area about the size of the German State of Rhineland-Palatinate and after Russia, Australia and Canada is home to the largest untapped nickel deposits in the world. For several years now the company Koniambo Nickel SAS has been building a nickel mine.

Complex Industrial Plant

The huge project is a joint venture between Société Minière du Sud Pacifique and the international Xstrata Group, one of the biggest mining companies in the world. The target completion date of the Koniambo Nickel Mine Project is 2015 and the objective is to mine nickel out of the laterite stone for at least 25 years.

The complex industrial plant consists, amongst other things, of the laterite mine, an 11.5 km belt conveyor system, a 350 megawatt coal-fired power station, an ore processing plant, cooling water systems, its own port and various storage facilities. Ferronickel is extracted from the different ores through a laborious process and part of this process takes place in a flash dryer.

To carry out the construction and maintenance work on the flash dryer, workers and materials require access to the system which is over 100 metres high. The safe transport along the system is ensured by four devices from GEDA-Dechentreiter GmbH & Co.KG, the construction hoist company based in Bavaria, Germany. In order to guarantee maximum flexibility, two identical but independently operating lifts have been installed on the flash dryer of the nickel mine.

Versatile: GEDA Multilift P12

Since its market introduction at bauma 2007, the Multilift P12 has set new benchmarks in the transportation of people and materials. Authorised for the transport of 12 people and/or 1500 kg up to a lifting height of 150 m, the Multilift P12 continues to attract enthusiastic purchasers. The full base unit which is composed of a car, enclosure, flat cable bin and drive is delivered as one unit with perfect dimensions for container loading and for HGV transportation. The practical forklift take-up point means that the entire base unit can be unloaded with a forklift. The device can then be erected immediately on-site without any cabin "components" having to be assembled. The subsequent erection work then follows easily and above all safely: Through the integrated trapdoor (in the roof) and the mast protection shield inside the lift, the device can be easily assembled and disassembled from the platform. The Multilift P12 transports people and materials upwards and downwards at a hoisting (lifting) speed of 12-40 m/min.

In comparison to larger passenger lifts, the Multilift only requires a few square metres of floor area. It also complies with the specified safety provisions through its completely enclosed enclosure. Two Multilift P12 lifts each with a lifting height of 69 metres are being used on the flash dryer of the Koniambo Nickel Mine There are ten stop positions which ensure that the different levels are easily reached.

Powerpack: PH 2737 Single

In addition to the GEDA Multilift P12, two GEDA PH 2737 Single Lifts are also installed on the flash dryer. The PH lift series has been specifically designed to transport heavy loads over big lifting heights. The GEDA PH 2737 lifts controlled by a frequency converter, achieve a hoisting (lifting) speed of 65 m/min, a lift height of up to 400 m and are authorised for the transport of 28 people or 2700 kg. The lifting height on the flash dryer is 106 metres. The integrated landing call box with its digital display in the lift makes it easy and practical to use, since just as in a domestic lift, the lift can stop at each of the ten landings merely by pressing a button. The convenient platform size of 1.55 x 3.70 metres enables bulky loads to be transported along the flash dryer. As with all GEDA rack and pinion lifts, the lubrication equipment is included as standard in the PH 2737 Single. This ensures significantly lower wear and tear on the toothed rack and pinions. The completely enclosed enclosure also ensures a high degree of safety when it is on the ground.

Safe is better

The specified safety guidelines for the Koniambo Nickel Project were accepted and confirmed on-site. The safety at the ten respective entry and exit points is ensured by GEDA landing level safety gates which meet all requirements set by the latest European Machinery Directive 2006/42/EC. Different landing level safety gates from the extensive GEDA range are being used to address various instructions and preconditions. GEDA Standard-Basic landing level safety gates are installed on the two Multilift P12-Lifts, and on the PH-Lifts the GEDA Comfort-landing level safety gates are installed. Both variants convince customers due to their ease of installation. All components are hot dip galvanized and can be installed either to open on the left or on the right. Needless to say, safety features such as the speed-dependent GEDA safety gear and overload protection, as well as limit switches at the top and bottom landings, are also part of the standard package.

Worldwide Distribution Network

Aber wie kommen die Bauaufzüge aus Bayern ans andere Ende der Welt? GEDA profitiert von einem weltweiten Vertriebsnetz und Partnern vor Ort. Dank der internationalen Vertriebsstruktur wurden GEDA Produkte bereits in 80 verschiedene Länder geliefert. Kompetenz und Qualität werden eben auf der ganzen Welt geschätzt.

The world´s largest nickel producer

When production at the Koniambo Mine has reached full capacity, New Caledonia will become one of the world's largest nickel producers. In 2014 the delivery volume of the Koniambo Nickel Mine is set to amount to 60,000 tonnes of nickel.