Beyond belting

Fenner Conveyors and Conveyor Products and Solutions are working to deliver a one-stop-shop conveyor belt and roller offering.

Papua New Guinea (PNG) has been making strides in a mission to take its place on the world stage as a major supplier of essential resources.

But there’s only one way those critical metals and minerals will travel the mines of PNG to the rest of the world: conveyors.

Luckily, Fenner Conveyors has a curated team with the knowledge and experience to keep the Pacific nation rolling.

Having acquired Conveyor Products and Solutions (CPS), an Australian conveyor component design and engineering expert, in 2022, Fenner Conveyors is now well-positioned to deliver enhanced conveyor solutions to the region.

Over the years, Fenner Conveyors has established itself as a key player in PNG’s mining sector, supplying conveyor belts and services to various mining operations.

A PNG gold and copper mine commissioned with a Fenner Conveyors belt and CPS rollers.
Image: Fenner Conveyors

National sales manager Travis Lewis said CPS has also had a long history of supplying high quality conveyor rollers, idlers and pulleys to PNG.

“We’ve been providing support to the region for years and working with some of the biggest mines in PNG,” Lewis told PNG Mining. “As part of the Fenner Conveyors Group, we can now provide a full turnkey solution for conveyor systems.

“It sets us apart as we’re now the only company in the market that can deliver that full conveyor engineering expertise, service and product supply.”

Equipped with ultra-modern industrial means, automation, digital, and robotic production tools, Lewis said CPS and Fenner Conveyors have the solution to an issue many mine operators face.

“Traditionally, mining clients would have to go to various companies for each conveyor component or service required, which can be tricky because components might not be optimised to work together, effecting how the overall conveyor operation will run,” he said.

“But the joint position we’re in as Fenner Conveyors means we can leverage the experience and knowledge of all companies within the Fenner Conveyors Group to offer our clients a one-stop-shop for equipment engineered to work together.

“It’s a quantum leap in our ability to provide quality belts and rollers to PNG.”

Where CPS’ conveyor products were previously sold through various suppliers in PNG, Fenner Conveyors account manager Andrew Morgan said taking a ‘One Fenner’ approach can offer customers an added layer of care.

“We have engineering expertise and support on-hand every step of the way to combat any challenge,” Morgan said.

“We have experts in pulleys, experts in rollers, experts in belting – experts for every part of a conveyor system.”

This expertise is enhanced by Fenner Conveyors’ parent company, global manufacturing powerhouse  Michelin.

Fenner Conveyors is able to tap into Michelin’s research and development capabilities to constantly re-optimise and enhance the performance of its conveyor products.

“PNG can be a very harsh mining environment with uneven terrain and extreme rain and humidity,” Morgan said. “If you leave things lying around for too long, the landscape will reclaim it very quickly.

“With the support of our parent company, Michelin, we’re able to expedite our research and development and get solutions on the market that thrive in such a harsh environment. This improves productivity, reduces costs, and minimises downtime.”

With mining operations nestled in hills hundreds of metres above sea level, product often has large drops between conveyors, the shock of which can quickly wear out the belt if it’s not engineered for the conditions.

Fenner Conveyors’ cover protection for cut and gouge resistance, ArmorShield, is demonstrating outstanding results for mining operations in PNG.

“ArmorShield is proving to more than double the life of the belt,” Morgan said. “It’s a great solution for the PNG market, where belts can wear out much faster than they do in other environments.”

When the belt and rollers are engineered to work together, significant progress can be made towards optimising conveyor operations.

“As a group we’re well positioned to support our existing customers while also investing in emerging customers in the region,” Lewis said. “We’ve got the right culture, the right collaborations, and the right engineering skill set and of course, the right conveyor products.

“In all, we’ve generated a very holistic approach as one Fenner Conveyors team to support our customers in PNG.”

This feature appeared in the June–July 2024 issue of PNG Mining.

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