ABB improves reliability and availability of hoist system at KGHM copper mine in Poland

Zurich, Switzerland, January 18, 2018
  • Comprehensive hoist modernization project includes digital automation and electrical upgrades
  • Digital ABB Ability control technologies to help make ore extraction process more safe and efficient


ABB will upgrade the mine hoist at KGHM’s “Lubin” copper mine in southwest Poland, which is in one of the oldest mines in the Polish Copper Zone. The comprehensive modernization project will enhance the safety level, reliability and availability of the hoist installation, while reducing the work cycle cost. Mine owner KGHM Polska MiedŸ S.A is one of the world’s leading producers of copper and silver with over 70 entities located, in Europe, North America and South America. It operates 10 plants in Poland, in mining and metallurgy industries.

The mine hoist is a key part any mine shaft. It is mainly used to transport excavated materials, so unscheduled downtimes may result in significant financial loss to the operator. The mine hoist at the L-II ZACH shaft has been operating since the 1970s; its last upgrade was done by ABB more than 20 years ago. The past two decades were a time of intensive development in the mining industry. Today’s new technologies can increase the output of the mine hoists, facilitate deeper mining, improve overall safety and help control growing operational costs.

ABB will modernize the electrical systems as well as the control system for the mine hoist to optimize energy consumption, availability and safety. The scope of delivery includes the main motor, DCS800 drives, transformers, switchgear, as well as break and signal systems. The control system will be upgraded with ABB Ability System 800xA AC 800 controllers that will provide fast digital communication, interoperability and remote monitoring.

Since high temperatures are a significant factor for mine hoist operations, ABB will also install special-purpose platforms with efficient cooling systems, designed to work independently in extreme industrial conditions.

ABB will carry out the modernization project in the second quarter of 2018, during a planned shutdown of the facility. The project execution time is extremely short, with all core components to be installed within just a few days.

“Working with this challenging delivery timeline, and implementing the latest digital technologies for this customer, underscore ABB’s commitment to delivering the best solutions, technologies, and industry expertise that will help our customers succeed,” said Maciej Janowicz from Industrial Automation Division, ABB Poland.

The modernization of the mine hoist at the “Lubin” copper mine the latest large project delivered by ABB for the Polish mining market. Earlier projects included the modernization of, as well as new turn-key deliveries of complete mine hoists, such as in the “Rudna” Copper Mine in Polkowice, Poland.

The “Lubin” copper mine, located in Poland’s region of Lower Silesia, is a subsidiary of the KGHM Polska MiedŸ S.A. and has operated since 1968. The mine uses seven shafts, one of which is used for extracting ore and reaches up to 963 m of depth. The rich polymetallic deposits within the area contain copper and silver, as well as minor amounts of nickel, cobalt and molybdenum. The current output is 8 million Mg of material that contains 68.334 thousand Mg of copper and 319 Mg of silver. The annual plant production reaches 8 million tons of copper ore.

ABB (ABBN: SIX Swiss Ex) is a pioneering technology leader in electrification products, robotics and motion, industrial automation and power grids, serving customers in utilities, industry and transport & infrastructure globally. Continuing a history of innovation spanning more than 130 years, ABB today is writing the future of industrial digitalization and driving the Energy and Fourth Industrial Revolutions. As title partner of Formula E, the fully electric international FIA motorsport class, ABB is pushing the boundaries of e-mobility to contribute to a sustainable future. ABB operates in more than 100 countries with about 136,000 employees. www.abb.com

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