Downtime of your power generation can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars in lost income for mining companies. This makes finding a mining power generation provider with a long record of providing reliable energy solutions an essential task. Moreover, you want to find a company that puts energy efficiency as one of their highest priorities, due to the extensive costs involved with fuelling power generators.
When looking for the right power generation provider, focus on these 6 key questions.
· How modern and innovative is the technology?
As time goes on, constant improvements are made to power generation equipment to improve its efficiency and design. To gain the benefits of these advancements, it important to have the latest machinery with the most up-to-date technology, which is upgraded as soon as more advancements in technology have been created.
Speak to a few power generation providers and ask them about their machines. How old are they? What innovative features do they possess? Will the power generation providers ensure that the machinery they supply is kept up to date with the latest technology?
· Is the power station purpose built?
You may look to rent portable power generators to supply energy to one of your mine sites. While this may avoid capital expenditure, most rental power solution providers will use a generic fleet of containerised generators.
These machines may work fine for short-time jobs but will generate many issues when placed in the harsh operating environment of a remote mine site with varying elevated temperatures. Ideally, portable power rental equipment should only be used on construction sites or for local events, not large mining operations.
When looking for the right mining power generator provider, ensure the power station they build, own and operate is purpose-built to suit the location and requirements of the mine site. The conditions of the area need to be considered when designing and building the power station to ensure it can sustain optimal power.
· Is the technology proven?
When looking for potential providers, inquire about what makes their technology, design and infrastructure stand out from their competition. You want a provider who has a long history of providing a specialised and complete service in mining power generation.
· How energy efficient is the solution?
Considering fuel consumption comprises approximately 80% of the cost associated with remote mine power supply, energy efficiency should be one of the key factors determining your choice of power generation provider. The higher the fuel efficiency, the lower to the lifetime running costs will be.
Experienced providers will also provide a fuel guarantee, so you have a set maximum fuel consumption amount per kWh. If consumption goes above this guaranteed amount, you will be able to recover the cost by deducting the additional fuel from the bill.
· Does the company have a good health and safety record?
An elevated level of health and safety is vital on a remote mine site due to the high-risk nature of the job. Your provider should have systems in place to ensure their machinery and operation has safety in front of mind. Have a look at their safety credentials and history to ensure they put a high importance on the health and safety of their service, and the people using their products.
· What steps are taken to minimise downtime?
Your power provider should take all the necessary steps to minimise downtime. This includes performing routine inspections and servicing to keep machinery performing at optimal levels. While most people would consider that OEM parts would perform the best, the fact is, OEM generators and parts are not made to suit the harsh remote environment of mine sites. Your provider should use specially designed and built generators and parts.
Reputable power generation providers will also provide a guarantee that their machinery and technology will perform at or above expectations. This includes offering compensation if their products are under-performing or have unexpected faults or outages.