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Media / Product and service news / Roy Hill takes delivery of 100th Pit Viper in Australia

Roy Hill takes delivery of 100th Pit Viper in Australia


November 25, 2015 ‑ Roy Hill Iron Ore has just taken delivery of the 100th Pit Viper rotary blast hole rig in Australia. The rig, an Atlas Copco PV271 has a 75,000 lb (34 tonnes) bit load capacity and can drill a 55 ft (16.8 m) clean hole in a single pass. This rig is the fourth in Roy Hill’s fleet of Pit Vipers on its Pilbara site.

Atlas Copco USA - Handover 100th Pit Viper
It is an important delivery for Roy Hill, they are in the middle of a production ramp up for a target of 55 Mtpa of iron ore and these rigs provide Roy Hill’s entire production blasthole drilling requirements for the site.

Atlas Copco has provided support both on and off-site to Roy Hill, with on-site technical advice to the Roy Hill operations and maintenance teams ensuring a smooth transition in the up-take of the new drills.

As a margin focussed business, delivering the lowest cost per drilled metre was an important factor in selecting the Pit Viper for Roy Hill.

The Pit Viper fleet was delivered with the SmartClutch technology providing significant fuel savings of over 20 litres per hour, compared to a machine with direct compressor engagement.

Bill Lamb Roy Hill, GM Mining says ”the availability and penetration rate of the Pit Viper has exceeded our original expectations and have helped us get our mining operation off to a good start.”

Recent trials using the auto drill feature have given promising results, encouraging Roy Hill to explore further drill automation.  The very high productivity and reliability of the Pit Vipers has meant that Roy Hill is well ahead of their drilling program.

With the large expansions in Iron ore production, Atlas Copco has delivered more than 90% of the total production drills in Pilbara over the last 4 years, while ramping up the parts and services organisation along with its parts distribution centre in Perth to support this growth in the Pit Viper fleet in Western Australia.

Dustin Penn, Australian Business Line Manager, Drilling Solutions for Atlas Copco is pleased that Roy Hill is taking delivery of Atlas Copco’s 100th Pit Viper into Australia.

“This demonstrates their commitment to Atlas Copco’s Pit Viper series and we look forward to continuing working with them as they ramp up to full name plate production,” Penn said.

For further information please contact:

  • Sue Goc, Communications Manager
    Atlas Copco Mining and Rock Excavation Australia
    Ph: 02 9621 9707, Mob: 0419 236 706

Atlas Copco is a world-leading provider of sustainable productivity solutions. The Group serves customers with innovative compressors, vacuum solutions and air treatment systems, construction and mining equipment, power tools and assembly systems. Atlas Copco develops products and service focused on productivity, energy efficiency, safety and ergonomics. The company was founded in 1873, is based in Stockholm, Sweden, and has a global reach spanning more than 180 countries. In 2013, Atlas Copco had revenues of BSEK 84 (BEUR 9.7) and more than 40 000 employees.

Drilling Solutions is a division within Atlas Copco’s Mining and Rock Excavation Technique business area. It develops, manufactures, and markets a wide range of rotary drilling equipment for use in surface mining, exploration, construction, water well, aggregate, and shallow oil and gas applications worldwide. The divisional headquarters and main production center are located in Garland, Texas, USA.