Partnership paves way to new markets

Publication: HighGrade – Online publication 

Date: Wednesday 14 November, 2012

HAUL road design and construction expertise supplied by two Australian companies is being used at an Indonesian coal mine, underlining the transportability of Australian mining IP.

The two Queensland-based companies, haul-road consulting firm Proof Engineers and road stabilisation product maker Reynolds Soil Technologies (RST), are working on a "multi-million-dollar haul road" at a Kalimantan coal mine in a continuation of their so-far successful partnership.

Proof was formed in 2010 by director Sebastian Karsas and the company was drawn immediately into offshore markets as well as offering its services in Australia. Karsas says the firm specialises in providing civil engineering services to the mining, plantation and civil road building sectors, and has worked in Australia, South Africa, New Caledonia, Colombia and North America.

RST moved into Indonesia five years ago, appointing an Indonesian distributor to manage its local operations. Operations and technical director David Handel said the company had worked for more than 20 years in mine, port and land-development dust management, soil stabilisation and erosion control.

Proof designed the haul road for the Kalimantan coal mine in January this year after analysing local site and construction conditions. Karsas said the completed haul road would show how well-designed and constructed roads could support growth in Indonesia's coal mining industry.

"Though coal mining in Indonesia is an expanding market, distribution still remains a challenge due to difficult terrain and damaged roads," he said. "The [Kalimantan] haul road has been designed to ensure safety during the transportation process as well as significantly increase production rates, while RST's products will improve the road's structural integrity, reduce road maintenance and protect the road's surface from rapid deterioration and damage.

"We are estimating the haul road will take up to a year to construct, due to weather and environmental challenges that currently exist in Indonesia – however once complete, the haul road will perform well in these conditions."

Proof's Haul Road Development Program is central to its global mine site offering. Design and planning expertise is married with RST road stabilisers, and surface maintenance and dust remediation products.

"We have been working closely with Proof Engineers to design products that are tailor-made specifically for Indonesian haul roads," Handel said.

"Our products, along with Proof's design and management, will ensure the Kalimantan haul road is successfully built to increase fleet energy efficiencies as well as maximise productivity and return at the same time."

Handel said RST road stabilising technology would also help the mine owner reduce equipment tyre wear and site dust emissions, and increase road surface life.