GEOG 000

5.1.2a: Shuttle Cars and Bridge Conveyors


5.1.2a: Shuttle Cars and Bridge Conveyors

Shuttle Cars

Shuttle cars are a low-profile intermediate haulage option used predominantly in underground coal and some industrial minerals mines. Ore is loaded into the shuttle car at the face, and then it trams a relatively short distance, dumps its load, and returns to repeat the cycle. Shuttle cars are manufactured in different sizes to work in very thin seams of less than 36” to high seams, greater than 72”. The capacity is dependent on the size, but a typical capacity is 6 – 10 tons. The shuttle car normally dumps into a feeder-breaker, which crushes any large lumps and feeds the load onto a conveyor belt. Variations of the shuttle car include ram cars and haulers.

Shuttle car
Figure 5.1.22: A shuttle car

Bridge Conveyors

Bridge conveyors are belt conveyors that are designed to move material directly form the face to a final point, e.g., a spoil pile in surface mining, or a transfer to a main conveyor in underground mining. Unlike main-belt conveyors, which are semi-permanent, bridge conveyors are designed to be easily maneuverable, to keep up with the active mining face. Looking at this bridge conveyor, known as a flexible conveyor train, you can see the hopper where ore is loaded. There is a feeder in this hopper that meters the ore onto the rubber conveyor belt. Note that the belt can go around corners. These have found limited application in underground coal and salt mines.

Flexible conveyor train. See text above image.
Figure 5.1.23: Flexible conveyor train

Here is an example of a conveyor being used to transport spoil (overburden) directly from the bucket of an excavator to spoil piles.

Conveyor transporting overburden. See text above image.
Figure 5.1.24: A conveyor transporting overburden