Copper Mountain Trolley – Assist Prefeasibility Study

  • Project
Bba site visit to copper mountain bc 2022 Final

Hudbay operates the Copper Mountain mine, an open-pit copper mine near Princeton, B.C., with annual copper production of around 90 million pounds. In 2020, for each tonne of copper produced, the mine emitted approximately 2.3 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent greenhouse gases (GHG). To reduce their carbon intensity and receive funding from the CleanBC fund, as well as support from BC Hydro, Copper Mountain (now Hudbay) wanted to evaluate the feasibility of implementing a trolley-assist system (TAS) on a 1 km haul ramp segment.

  • Date May 09, 2020
  • Region Western Canada
  • Client Hudbay Minerals Inc.
  1. Our experts' solutions

    BBA was chosen to perform various PFS-level engineering tasks, such as geotechnical, structural, mining and electrical engineering. We also performed the constructability, estimation and scheduling as well as being the overall study integrator, consolidating work from ABB, Komatsu and Struthers Tech.

    Additionally, our experts designed the haul ramp segment to include a dedicated trolley-assist lane and determined the location for the electrical substation. We assessed changes in fuel and electrical consumption, as well as their impact on greenhouse gas emissions. The team evaluated project baseline conditions and structural requirements, analyzing the costs and implications of upgrading the main substation with a new 50 MVA transformer and 20 MVAR STATCOM, along with onsite 25 kV power distribution.

    Future benefits could include reduction in planned greenhouse gas emissions—over 90% reduction with TAS implementation on the identified haul ramp segment, compared to diesel-powered haul trucks—plus an overall GHG reduction goal of approximately 6.5% compared to Copper Mountain mine's 2019 emissions.

    The project also has a goal to reduce operating costs by replacing diesel power with low-cost hydroelectric power in B.C., along with improved truck-cycle time, enabling the hauling of more ore in a shorter timeframe with TAS implementation.

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