For underground mining operations, the choice of power source is a critical. Compressed air sources are proven to be the safest choice. The fact that air motors are non-sparking and don’t present risk of explosion makes them the best choice for use in mines where explosive gas might be present. In addition, air motors do not generate heat or release toxic fumes, which are key features where people work in confined spaces. Even as hydraulic and electric applications begin to replace expensive pneumatic networks, there are many mines that will never move away from compressed air. Even for mines that are in the transition between technologies Magnevane is a powerful technology to reduce the overall pressure in the pneumatic network, and to reduce costs and increase efficiency of existing infrastructure.
The flexibility, lower weight and smaller size of pneumatic motors (compared to similar capacity electric and hydraulic motors) make them one of the most commonly used to drive power tools in the underground mining sector.
Magnevane technology significantly improves the performance of air motors in a variety of ways, delivering economic benefits immediately to mining operations.
Firstly, its impact on overall compressed air consumption is outstanding. Large-scale mining operations work with a range of air-powered equipment such as chainsaws, rotary impact drills, submersible pneumatic pumps, locomotive front-loaders etc. Magnevane powered motors deliver average savings of 30%-50% over other air motors’ consumption of compressed air. In the context of the ratio of electricity used to compress air this is a remarkable achievement.
Additionally, Magnevane technology’s use of magnets in place of springs and other mechanical devices massively improves reliability over conventional air motors, giving much longer uninterrupted operating time, thereby significantly reducing downtime and maintenance costs.
Many of the operating environments in this sector are subject to significant temperature variations. The springs used in conventional air motors to position the vanes are more susceptible to fatigue, degradation and failure when operating in such environments. Magnevane’s technology is unaffected by variations in environmental temperature.
As traditional vanes wear down air motors’ performance also reduces. Magnevane technology eliminates this performance reduction so that air motors fitted with Magnevane technology are always operating at full power, regardless of vane wear. Thus, Magnevane enabled motors also deliver stable and predictable performance.
As a technical note, the magnetic force applied by this technology is not generated by electromagnetism, and therefore does not radiate any kind of energy. Magnevane’s technology is based on permanent magnets and therefore does not pose any spark risk whatsoever.