Mining operation strikes gold with Volvo Penta

Volvo Penta engine powers underground loader in Alaska’s Pogo goldmine

The Volvo Penta-powered loader has impressed its owners since it began working at the Pogo goldmine in late 2013.
The Volvo Penta-powered loader has impressed its owners since it began working at the Pogo goldmine in late 2013.

A Volvo Penta engine is being used to power an underground loader working in Alaska’s Pogo goldmine.

The high-capacity, load-haul-dump loader, which works two shifts per day for a total of up to 20 hours, loads out of the face and into trucks.

According to its owner, the Volvo Penta Tier 4 Interim TAD1361VE engine has made a striking first impression in the fields of uptime, ventilation rates, and emissions.

“The engine is clean burning, and with current legislation requirements, that’s critical,” commented Paul Brunelle, general foreman at Pogo mine.

“Not only that – it’s been running well with minimal downtime, and the operators like the ride. It’s our favourite mucker out there,” he added.

Located 137km southeast of Fairbanks, Alaska, Pogo mine boasts 48km of underground tunnels and contains two high-grade, gold-bearing quartz veins, which yield almost 2,300 tonnes of ore per day.

Since it was purchased in late 2013, the Volvo Penta-powered loader has clocked up over 1,800 at the goldmine.

The TAD1361VE engine has lower air-exchange requirements than its Tier 2 counterparts that are also in operation at the Pogo site. This has helped the mine to save money.

Its owners have been able to reduce air-heating costs and comply with the Mine Safety and Health Administration’s (MSHA) air standards without the need to upgrade their ventilation system.

The Volvo Penta engine was supplied to the goldmine by local dealer, Delta Industrial. The firm, which has been in business for 17 years, began selling and servicing Volvo Penta products last year after receiving a surface top hammer drill that ran a Volvo Penta engine.

“Now that we have the expertise, we send out machines powered by Volvo Penta as often as possible,” explained Curt Dufendach, the dealer’s president.

Brunelle concluded: “Delta Industrial’s service is one of the reasons we bought the machine. They’ve gone the extra mile with our other equipment, and we knew they would with this one too.”


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