September 28, 2018 the BELAZ factory celebrated its 70th anniversary. The festive event was attended by more than 450 guests: distributors, consumers, partners of OJSC “BELAZ” and representatives of the Government of the Republic of Belarus. The Chinese company “WEICHAI” based on research, development and production of diesel engines became the exclusive partner of the event dedicated to the anniversary of the factory.
The BELAZ plant began its glorious history 70 years ago. The first product that came out of the assembly line of the plant was a dump truck with 25 ton payload capacity – MAZ-525.
Throughout the history of the factory, the range of models has been constantly expanded and modernized. Year after year, the company entered new markets. Throughout the period of 70 years of history, the plant had difficulties repeatedly, but successfully overcame them. After the collapse of the USSR, when many industrial giants of former Soviet republics had serious difficulties that led to a halt in production, bankruptcy. But BELAZ did not declare bankruptcy, but confidently continued its development in new economic conditions.
As the CEO of the company BELAZ Peter Parkhomchik pointed out during the festive event, for 70 years the company convincingly demonstrated its competitiveness, compliance with the high international requirements of product quality and production safety. The company is constantly improving the management system, introducing new technologies and increasing intellectual potential. The history of the Belarusian automotive plant is more than 550 modifications of mining dump trucks with payload capacity from 27 to 450 tons, more than 160 thousand units of equipment that were sold to more than 80 countries of the world.
Mining equipment “BELAZ” receives high ratings from consumers. First they notice high maneuverability of the BELAZ trucks, good operation of the machine, good traction characteristics, ease of operation, safety, high power density, which ultimately leads to a low cost per tonne of transported cargo, which is a key point in the economy of any mining company.
We must also pay attention to the fact that the Belarusian mining equipment manufacturer has always paid special attention to innovations, thanks to which unique machines are born that have no analogues in the world. Thus, BELAZ repeatedly surprised the world with its novelties. The first mining truck of the Belarusian manufacturer, which became the largest in the world, was launched on the eve of the collapse of the USSR, in 1990. It was a mining truck with a load capacity of 280 tons BELAZ-75501.
It was not ordinary mining truck, it was a conceptually new machine, with design which at that time had no analogues in the world: by virtue of its construction (the truck had twin wheels on the front and rear axles, and to make such an axis a point of inflection is quite difficult), had no classic rigid chassis, but articulated. In addition, the truck had an electric transmission. On each BELAZ-75501 wheel were placed DC traction motor, two-row planetary gearbox and two-disc brake with the diameter of 600 millimeters.
Over the years, several decisions were borrowed to create the new world record holder – BELAZ 75710 mining dump truck with payload capacity of 450 tons. It also has a unique steering system that has no analogues in the world: twin wheels in the front and rear axle due to its large load capacity and unique steering system.
BELAZ factory repeatedly became the winner of prestigious international awards. Thus, in 1997, the plant received the eighth “For quality and technology” international award and the American “Quality” gold award. In 2010, OJSC “BELAZ” received the “Crystal Nika” award in framework of the international “Partnership for Progress” program.
As a result of the long and progressive development of OJSC “BELAZ”, it is a large holding, which nowadays offers its consumers not only a wide range of models of mining trucks of payload capacity from 30 to 450 tons. Today BELAZ offers consumers to develop together with the mining truck factory via using of a wide range of components from the leading global manufacturers equipment which meets the wishes and individual needs of the customers.
In the welcome speech at the event dedicated to the 70th anniversary of the plant, CEO of BELAZ, Peter Parkhomchik, said: “Today, here in Zhodino, on the Belarusian land, we produce the widest range of mining dump trucks. They transport all kinds of minerals, they work in all climatic conditions, on 5 continents, in more than 80 countries.We achieved all this thanks to well coordinated work of many links of one chain, starting, first of all, with you, our Dear customers and suppliers, and, of course, laborious work of designers, technologists, production workers, marketers, all those involved in the development, production, sales and service of our teams The following facts speak about our successful collaboration. According to the international consultancy Parker Bay, BELAZ, as results of our joint work with you in 2017, for the first time in its history, ranked second in the world table of mining truck manufacturers”.
On the international scientific-practical conference “BELAZ: Progress, Innovations, Future” with which the solemn event dedicated to the 70th anniversary began, it was observed especially that the last decade BELAZ gradually strengthened its position in world markets from 10% to 28%. Among the special achievements, it is worth noting that today BELAZ in payload capacity class 130 tons owns approximately 90% of the world market, in mining trucks with payload capacity of 220-240 tons more than 45%. In payload capacity class of 160-180 tons, which was presented in 2015, in just 3 years gained 17% of world market. Innovative, without analogous in the world, mining truck with payload capacity of 90 tons with electric transmission for 5 years won 10% of the world market. At the conference, Peter Parkhomchik drew attention to the fact that, unlike its competitors, transnational companies that embarked on the large-scale production of mining trucks as a result of the acquisition of other companies, BELAZ remains the only manufacturer in the world that developed and dominated independently. The mining trucks and throughout its 70 years of history preserved their independence and commercial brand.
In framework of the conference, during the discussion of BELAZ’s plans in the short, medium and long term perspectives, the plans which the manufacturer intend to achieve with its strategic partners were announced.
In addition, work is currently being done to design and manufacture new generation mining trucks with innovative electric transmissions, gas engines, new design solutions, battery machines and autonomous equipment. For 70 years, BELAZ developed its own unique engineering school. The design developments and the solutions used in the production of BELAZ products give the mining trucks a series of competitive advantages, in particular, the design of a guide device and the suspension cylinders for mining trucks ensure a smoothness of movement of the truck which guarantees comfortable conditions of work for operator, does not harm his health, prolongs the useful life of the nodes and systems of the truck and shows well in the work in the field of the development of new deposits, where time is required to prepare the road surface. Also air-oil suspension of BELAZ mining trucks is reliable, durable and easy to maintain.
The BELAZ factory is famous not only for its own unique and professional engineering school, but also for its highly qualified management team. During the last 10 years, OJSC “BELAZ” was developed in conditions of two crises happened one after another. In 2008, the global market for mining equipment experienced a sharp drop in demand and sales of mining trucks fell almost one and a half times. Then, after three years of positive development, since 2011, the crisis reappeared, which was more prolonged, affected all the mining equipment producers. As a result of this crisis some companies which experienced the insurmountable negative consequences of the crisis, such as Bucyrus, Joy Global and others, lost their independence and were absorbed by grand transnational corporations. BELAZ thanks to the professional management team and the fully verified and efficient development strategy that took into account the trends in the global markets that were formed at that time, not only could strengthen its position on traditional markets where the equipment was already selling, but also enter new markets.
Responding to journalists’ questions about BELAZ’s achievement in terms of product exports, the CEO stated that in the last 5 years BELAZ sent its products which consists of more than 4,000 units of equipment totaling approximately $ 3 thousand millions of dollars. The products were delivered to 33 countries around the world, 24 of which are non-CIS countries. BELAZ equipment also entered new markets. These are countries like Bangladesh, Zimbabwe, Morocco and the Philippines. In addition, the last 5 years were marked by the resumption of equipment deliveries after a long break in Georgia, Romania and Jordan. Significant progress was made in promotion of new models of mining dump trucks of different payload capacities to Finland (mining dump trucks with payload capacity of 45 tons), Zimbabwe (mining trucks with payload capacity of 55 tons, bulldozers, water trucks and recovery tractors) Vietnam and Mongolia (mining trucks with payload capacity of 90 tons) Indonesia (mining trucks with payload capacity of 110-130 tons), Angola (mining trucks with payload of 110-130 tons), Morocco (mining trucks with payload capacity of 180 tons), South Africa (mining trucks with payload capacity of 240 tons), Russia (mining trucks with payload capacity of 360 and 450 tons). The fleet of consumer equipment in Poland and Czech Republic has been replaced with new products from the factory: BELAZ-75454 mining trucks with Scania engine, which comply with modern environmental standards Tier4, and BELAZ-75551 with Liebherr engine. Also on the national market of Belarus mining dump trucks with payload capacity of 90 tons were supplied. It was a record for the country which did not have developed mining industry. The buyer of these machines was the state company specializing in the production of granite – RUE “Granit”. At the same time, Peter Parkhomchik especially highlighted the fact that the supply of 52 units of equipment in Zimbabwe in 2017 was one of the largest annual lots sold to non-CIS countries, and the volume of deliveries to Uzbekistan was a record for all long history of cooperation with mining companies in this country. The number of trucks that would be delivered to Uzbekistan by the end of 2018 year is 275 units.
It is worth paying attention to the innovative developments of BELAZ. Thus, in the framework of the practical part of the scientific-practical conference “BELAZ: Progress, Innovations, Future”, on the testing ground the latest high-tech developments of the company was shown to guests and participants of the festive event. These were mining dump truck with payload capacity of 45 tons with a four-stroke gas piston engine “KUNGUR-550” (developed by the Russian company “Technologie 1604”, specialized in development of engines that work with alternative fuels) with liquefied natural gas (methane) as well as prototypes of robotic technology: autonomous mining dump truck with payload capacity of 130 tons BELAZ 7513R and wheel loader BELAZ 78250 with payload capacity of 22 tons and a bucket capacity of 11 m3.
The robotic equipment was developed by BELAZ together with its Russian strategic partner, the company VIST-Group, in particular with its subsidiary VIST ROBOTICS, which is developing tools for robotization. The hardware and software installed in these machines allow them to operate in three modes: manual, which requires the presence of the operator in vehicle cab, semi-autonomous, which means controlling the machines by operator from a remote control location that can be located at distance of 2 km far from place of operation of the equipment and autonomous, which implies the movement and operation of equipment according to given algorithm without human intervention. Usage of this type of equipment contributes to improving the safety of the work as a whole, allows its use in the works where minerals are produced that have a detrimental effect on human health, as well as in mines where the organization of personnel delivery to mine and back is difficult and expensive. In future, the factory plans to gradually improve the robotization systems and expand the range of products which can work autonomously.
This demonstration aroused great interest among the guests, many of them noted the prospects of this type of mining equipment. In addition, mining trucks with better performance were demonstrated:
– mining dump truck with payload capacity of 90 tons BELAZ 7558B, equipped with new electromechanical transmission of alternating current. The mining truck is equipped by a control cabinet produced by BELAZ, thanks to which the machine implements traction control systems and an anti-slip system, as well as an effective engine management system;
– mining dump truck with payload capacity of 90 tons BELAZ 75589 equipped with diesel engine manufactured by the Chinese company Weichai and electromechanical transmission of the Russian manufacturer RUSELPROM;
– new model of mining dump truck – BELAZ 75320 with payload capacity of 290 tons. This machine is equipped with Cummins QSK-60C diesel engine and electromechanical transmission manufactured by General Electric. By creating this model of mining truck, BELAZ occupied another place in the world market of mining equipment: these are mining trucks with payload capacity of 290 tons;
In summarizing the results of the scientific-practical conference, the BELAZ partners expressed their total willingness to work together to expand and improve the range of mining dump truck models, as well as to create joint products.
Therefore, according to the representative of the company URALMASHZAVOD (one of the strategic partners of BELAZ), a hydraulic mining excavator of the “straight shovel” type UGE-300 with a bucket capacity of 12 m3 is currently being tested. After the launch of this machine in serie, by the efforts of two large producers of mining equipment it is possible to offer an integral solution “excavation + transport” in target markets. As part of this solution, it is proposed to offer the BELAZ mining truck and UGE-300 excavator. Proposal of this kind will undoubtedly interest mining companies around the world.
The Chinese company Weichai expressed its willingness to supply engines for mining dump trucks with payload capacity of 45, 130 and 240 tons.
The scientific-practical conference was end with signing important documents with partners, including:
– memorandum between OJSC “BELAZ” and General Electric Corporation;
– tripartite agreement on partnership and strategic cooperation between OJSC “BELAZ”, CJSC “Trading house” BELAZ ” and “BELAZ-24 LTD”;
– contract between OJSC “BELAZ” and CJSC “Trading house” BELAZ” for the supply in the first half of 2019 123 mining trucks BELAZ of heavy and ultra heavy payload capacity to the main Russian mining companies.
The solemn event ended with a festive concert and fireworks.
BELAZ Latin America joins in congratulations to OJSC “BELAZ” and wishes fast development, the achievement of new heights and well-being for all its employees.