April 23, 2020
The Rapid City Realty and Development Corporation is a progressive quarry operator in the Philippines with operations at four quarries located in Eastern Rizal.
A fleet of four PowerROC T35 rigs are at work achieving a production of 162,000 tonnes blasted rock per month. But the highly fractured ground conditions and abrasive materials – basalt, posolanic and silica – make the work challenging for both operators and equipment.
The rigs, which are equipped with COP 1840 rock drills and T45 rods, drill for approximately five hours per day.
Working on eight meter high benches, they drill 76 mm holes at the site angle of five degrees. The drilling pattern is two meters by two meters (burden and spacing) and the hole depth is 9 m including about one meter of subdrilling.
Despite the tough conditions, straight holes are the norm with only occasional deviation and each rig has the capacity to drill approximately 810 m per shift. The drill bits are also supplied by Epiroc and have an average life length of 1750 meters.
Apart from the robustness of the PowerROC T35 and its ability to get the job done efficiently and safely, the availability of service and maintenance in this remote region was a big factor in choosing the equipment.
Edson Lee, Coordinator at Rapid, says: “Previously, the operators were using cabinless drill rigs and that made the job very hard for them as they were exposed to direct heat and the dusty environment.
"When the PowerROC T35 came along, the first benefit the operators experienced was the air-conditioned cabins. The next was the service arrangement."
Lee confirms that the company’s service agreement with Epiroc is “very helpful to the business”.
A support team consisting of two technicians – one field service technician and one service engineer – is permanently stationed in the area and keeps the equipment performing to expectations.
The team visits every rig six times a week. Each day during normal operations they proactively monitor the condition of the rigs according to an audit checklist.
They also perform PMS (planned maintenance) and breakdown repairs if necessary. Monthly reports are also compiled to keep the owner informed of the condition of the rigs’ conditions.
The design of the PowerROC T35 is a big advantage when it comes to carrying out maintenance work. For example, the rig has a minimum of electrical components and all components are easily accessible behind side panels for easy troubleshooting.
The local environment is also a challenge for the service engineers as they travel from site to site, off road and in steep terrain. During the rainy season they sometimes even have to go on foot to get to where the rigs are located. Earlier, excess dust, particularly in the summer, was also a frequent problem at the sites. This was mainly due to the poor performance of the dust collectors on the previous rigs that were used, making it difficult to both operate and service the equipment. Today, thanks to the efficiency of the dust collector on the PowerROC T35, this problem has been solved.