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The surface mining industry is a key facilitator of worldwide growth. Whether it’s in the extraction of raw materials that serve as the building blocks of modern life or through job creation, mining plays an integral part in building our tomorrow.

In a highly regulated industry with exacting standards, our customers require an equipment partner who is deeply invested in their success on the jobsite and beyond. After 50 years of success in rock cutting, Vermeer understands your need to deliver commodities competitively.

Unique technology designed specifically for surface mining, quarry, site prep and civil construction operations brings more precision and production to excavation projects. Precision surface mining, as developed by Vermeer, puts more control in the operators’ hands for precise, high-production material extraction.

From production to building the infrastructure required to support a large-scale mining operation, the Vermeer portfolio of equipment and support solutions gives you the confidence to be more productive.

Getting smarter about rock

Surface mining material is a very precise process. Knowing what you can about the material’s hardness and abrasiveness allows a more precise estimate of production and cost per ton of various types of rock.

In early 2006, Vermeer set up a state-of-the-art rock mechanics laboratory at its facilities in Pella, Iowa, USA. Using computer-controlled equipment provided by GCTS Testing Systems, Vermeer has tested rock from all over the world to build a database of rock properties. Tests include the unconfined compressive strength (UCS), abrasivity (Cerchar Abrasivity Index), indirect tension (Brazilian Test) and density. The lab has tested over 7,500 rock samples from over 700 locations around the world.

In some rock types, Vermeer has found that standard UCS hardness does not accurately predict machine production performance. Some rocks are soft but more difficult to cut, and others are hard but less difficult to cut than may be expected. Vermeer has developed its own energy-based test to help predict this behavior.

Determining rock properties is only part of the picture. Experts from Vermeer not only test the rock in-house, but also go out into the field to understand how our machines perform in that rock. Terrain Leveler SEM’s have been used on numerous sites where the instantaneous production rates and tooth wear were measured and compared to the Rock Lab results. This has enabled correlation of rock properties with estimated production rates and abrasivity.

Your local Vermeer dealer will assist you in working with the Rock Lab, including sending in core samples from your jobsites and receiving the results. Utilizing a Vermeer-developed solutions calculator, the results from the rock tests can help identify if the Terrain Leveler SEM may be right for your operation by estimating production rate and cost of operation/ownership.

Contact your local Vermeer dealer to submit a rock sample.