An Alberta-based mining company was in the process of developing a new mine located atop steep mountain terrain in the Smoky River Coalfield of Alberta. Due to the remote location of the mine, access to utility-scale power for production operations was unattainable in the time the operator needed to meet customer commitments.
In addition, the project site had a small footprint from which to set-up base operations and working conditions included frigid wind chills of -49º Celsius. For the mine to realise its production plans, it not only needed an alternative power source to support production activities and operations, but also a supplier with experience working in the most challenging environments regardless of barriers posed by terrain or extreme weather conditions.
Aggreko had a number of cold-weather generators available at its service centre in Leduc, Alberta to accommodate customer demand. Aggreko mobilised 6 MW of power up the Smoky River Mountain along with a 40 ton crane to lift and install the set-up.
Rental power was used to run all operations, including electric conveyors, offices and shops. Aggreko technicians were deployed 12 hours a day for four months while systems were monitored around the clock to troubleshoot any issues and ensure performance of the power source. Upon completion of the project, Aggreko technicians worked for 17 days in freezing temperatures to safely dismantle the crane and power generators.
Aggreko worked with the mine to quickly deliver a full-scale power plant that fitted the small footprint requirement and could run the entire project operation.
The mine was able to go into production within 6 weeks, allowing the company to meet previously-made customer commitments, and transition the mine to utility grid power once the transmission lines were energized for remaining production efforts.