Longwall show of shows

THE biennial Longwall USA Exhibition and Conference in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania is back once more with a host of products on show.
Longwall show of shows Longwall show of shows Longwall show of shows Longwall show of shows Longwall show of shows

Joy Global's longwall system. Courtesy of Joy Global.

Donna Schmidt

Scheduled from June 11-13 at its regular home of the David L Lawrence Convention Center, the underground-focused event will welcome thousands to the Steel City for exhibitions as well as an array of technical sessions and networking opportunities.

Show hours are 10am-5pm on June 11-12 and 9am-noon on June 13.

Check out some of the 140-plus vendors who will be ready to talk with guests.

Joy Global

The Joy longwall system for the mine of the future incorporates the latest automation technologies to drive improved operator safety and higher performance in longwall mining.

The company will once again have a prominent presence at the Longwall USA 2013 event.

The Joy Global display will include features and benefits of its low seam longwall, new downdrive, and productivity improvements afforded by company-direct Joy Global Smart Services. In addition to Joy Global’s exhibit, Joy Global Underground dust and ventilation engineer Joe Defibaugh will present a paper on June 11 at 2pm entitled A Review of Dust Control Techniques for Longwalls.

The presentation will provide an overview of longwall dust control techniques and the limitations of these techniques in reducing respirable dust levels at the operator’s position, better ways to control respirable dust levels in the future, the impact of future regulations for dust control in longwall mines and technologies for dust control to improve the productivity of longwall mining.

On June 12, Joy Global Underground controls and automation manager Mike Calderone, together with White Oak Resources chief operating officer Scott Langley, will give a presentation entitled Partnering to Develop a Productive Automated Longwall System. It will review the partnering that took place between White Oak Resources and Joy Global to develop a world-class longwall system incorporating the benefits of the latest automation technologies.


Underground mining products and services provider Matrix will be introducing and providing a hands-on demonstration of its next generation IntelliZone proximity detection system.

The Matrix IntelliZone proximity detection system is an integrated safety training and collision-avoidance system for mobile equipment, such as continuous miners and shuttle cars.

It helps protect workers operating in low-light or obscured operator-view areas.

This third-generation system typically uses two or more operational awareness zones that are contoured for the exact angles of the equipment they surround.

These “intelligent” zones can be configured for linear and dynamic changes based on the speed, direction and operating state of the vehicle, something other systems have been unsuccessful in replicating.

Matrix representatives will be on hand to discuss another innovative system they are releasing, MX3.

This integrated voice and text communication, tracking, control, and data transfer system combines the best elements of leaky feeder, conventional mine monitoring and control systems, wireless and fiber-based systems and previous Matrix METS systems into one easy-to-use, easy-to-advance system.

Matrix engineers can discuss recent accomplishments made by their controls and automation division, which designs everything from complete mine preparation plants to upgrades for existing equipment.

At Longwall USA, the control and automation team will focus on representing its advanced load out technologies, ranging from train to truck to barge loadout facilities.


The Pumps 2000 America pneumatic design was introduced to address difficult mining applications, including slurry, where competitor’s units were only lasting a short time.

It is the first redesign of the AODD principal and has been developed specifically for the mining market. According to Pumps 2000, it is considered by many to be the most efficient design for this demanding application.

Production models include half-inch, 1”, 1.5”, 2” and 3” designs, and soon-to-be-released 4” and two-stage models.

The air motor is stall-free and freeze-proof, keeps running smoothly without lubrication, and operates with low air consumption. Long life and better efficiency are said to be two benefits to the Pumps 2000 America product lasting much longer than competitors’ designs.

The system’s material design is not only a lighter alternative but also an aid in the prevention of neck and back injuries. It resists deterioration even in low pH locations and it is the first plastic pump ever made.

A fire retardant anti-static conductive plastic carrying an Atex M1 rating is also a proprietary feature of the unit, so use in more explosive situations is never an issue.

The high suction lift of Pumps 2000 America allows for more efficient usage over time and is designed to be maintenance-free. The supersuction ability is due to the unit’s patented double-hinged diaphragms, long stroke, and patented self-cleaning slurry and ball valves.

Passage of larger solids is a function of all models.

The Pumps 2000 design will reduce the amount of money spent on pumps yearly and will lower overall maintenance costs by keeping the mine dry.


Brookville Equipment Corporation will showcase its mining products alongside its post-production support group, Brookville Services.

The company’s expanded 20-foot by 20-foot booth will include a live demonstration of its patented onboard Jackwalker re-railing system, which allows equipment operators to place a locomotive back on track after a derailment with the press of a button through the use of an integrated hydraulic system. This improves safety and saves time over traditional jack-and-crib rerailing methods.

In addition to the live Jackwalker demonstration, Brookville will also exhibit its latest mining product innovations, such as retractable couplers, LED gauge panels, remote control and integrated self-propelled support vehicles – including fuel buffalos and microdusters.

Also in the Brookville booth, Brookville Services will showcase its exclusive OEM support for Brookville Equipment Corporation’s product line, including onsite maintenance, operator training classes, customer-localized warehousing, warranty support and life cycle management programs.


Industry product maker 3M will have lots to share with the regional and national crowd at this year’s show.

In March, the company unveiled its Peltor X Series earmuffs. Peltor X earmuffs are the first earmuffs on the market from 3M to provide workers with noise reduction rating values up to 31 decibels.

Built with innovative foam cushion technology and ear cups that tilt for optimum comfort and efficiency, the Peltor X Series earmuffs offer a new standard in design, comfort and protection.

“Noise-induced hearing loss is the No.1 sensory disability in the world,” hearing protection products manager Jason Jones said.

“The Peltor X Series is designed to address this concern by providing five different levels of protection, ranging from 21-31dB, to make it easier than ever for employers to match the hearing protection to the workers’ noise exposure on the job.”

The Peltor X Series combines a lightweight, modern design with soft, wide ear cushions that improve attenuation and create a more effective seal.

The series also incorporates an electrically insulated twin headband design that reduces heat buildup and provides outstanding fit and balance.

The Peltor X Series earmuffs are available in both standard headband and hard hat-attached models and made with easy-to-replace cushions and inserts.

Also in February, the company released its latest line of safety eyewear, 3M SecureFit Protective Eyewear.

The product group enhances comfort and wearability by seamlessly integrating self-adjusting temples and a secure fit into a single product. Designed with 3M’s proprietary pressure diffusion temple technology, SecureFit protective eyewear naturally adjusts to individual head sizes to help reduce eyewear slippage and discomfort.

“SecureFit protective eyewear is a game-changing product,” 3M head, eye and face protection product manager Chris Dujovski said. “There was a lot of hard work and innovation that went into designing this product, and we couldn’t be more excited to offer such a unique pair of comfortable protective eyewear at such an economical price.”

The company’s researchers developed the pressure diffusion temple technology after completing a comprehensive study that examined different face shapes and sizes from around the world.

The study identified approximately 600 different touch points on the human face that then guided the design and fit of the protective eyewear line.

The key benefits of pressure diffusion temple technology are: a secure, comfortable fit; its ability to self-adjust to a wide array of head sizes, which ultimately reduces the need to stock multiple frame sizes; and it helps reduce frame slippage during head movement.

The cool design of SecureFit weighs in at less than 1 ounce, is available in three shades – clear, amber and gray – and comes with either anti-fog or anti-scratch lens coatings to best adapt to an individual’s working environment.


Georgia-based Strata Worldwide has expanded its product lines substantially over the past two years and will be showcasing technologies in mining communications, safety and construction services at the Pittsburgh event.

Draeger products will be a primary feature in the booth, including the Draeger ChargeAir System,a breathing air system designed specifically for mine evacuation and firefighting during emergency situations.

As always, Strata will highlight its distinguished products in mine safety: emergency refuge chambers, HazardAvert proximity detection, wireless communications and tracking and cordless cap lamps.

Industrial Scientific

Returning to Longwall USA is Industrial Scientific, featuring the MSHA-approved Ventis MX4 Multi-Gas Detector at its exhibit.

Since the previous Longwall USA event, the Pittsburgh-based company has been notified of the federal approval, allowing use in underground mines.

The Ventis without pump has been certified by MSHA under Title 30 CFR, Part 22, when used with the standard or extended runtime lithium-ion battery packs.

The lightweight and highly configurable Ventis is capable of detecting from one to four gases including oxygen, methane and any two of the following toxic gases: carbon monoxide, hydrogen sulfide, nitrogen dioxide and sulfur dioxide.

The Ventis can be configured with methane, carbon monoxide and oxygen sensors for many everyday mining applications or it can be configured with methane, carbon monoxide, oxygen and nitrogen dioxide sensors, making it ideal for mines using diesel equipment.

It is fully compatible with iNet, Industrial Scientific’s Gas Detection as a service solution. The iNet solution helps keep workers safe at more than 3000 worksites across 19 countries.


Voith will be one of the exhibitors visiting with the guests on the show floor in Pittsburgh this year.

Its fill-controlled fluid coupling, type DTPKWL2, and Safeset torque limiter, type SRPG, are specifically designed for the tough working conditions of underground armored face conveyors.

The DTPKWL2 fluid couplings provide an unloaded start of mine duty squirrel cage motors.

The unloaded start allows the motors to be energized in sequence, which is important where there is weak supply voltage. In addition, the couplings provide a controlled system start-up, overload torque limitation and unlimited consecutive start-ups even of overloaded AFCs.

Power is transmitted via fluid flow – completely wear-free.

The DTPKWL2 fluid couplings work with water, a non-combustible, environmentally friendly operating medium that is commonly used for cooling AFC drive components and for coal dust suppression at the face.

The Safeset SRPG torque limiters are designed to slip providing chain breakage protection in cases of sudden system jams. No resetting of the Safeset SRPG torque limiter is required after an overload event.

The DTPKWL2 fluid couplings are selected to limit the torque dictated by the strength of the chain. The Safeset SRPG torque limiter also is set to protect the chain and isolate the rotational inertia of the driveline components from the chain during instances of instant torque spikes and overloads.

Because of their reliable operation and active protection of all drive components, the DTPKWL2 fluid couplings and Safeset SRPG torque limiters significantly reduce unplanned downtime due to equipment failure and broken chain.

Voith offers a range of fluid couplings and torque limiters for AFC drives. The company has years of experience in underground mining drive applications and has delivered many products to the North American market for years.

American Mine Research

AMR, which has launched new product lines, is ready to roll at Longwall USA.

Rocky Gap, Virginia-based American Mine Research is putting on show its Mine Net Mesh, a completely wireless system based on 802.11 Wi-Fi protocol.

That is an open protocol that allows mines to not only operate more safely but also more efficiently in the digital era.

The mesh system consists of wireless access points, IP-addressable tracking tags, VoIP smartphones, beacons and a master station (surface computer).

It offers wireless tracking, atmospheric monitoring and voice, text and push-to-talk communications.

The system’s open protocol further offers underground connectivity to the internet, email, schematics and manuals, PBX-coupling (landline), video and much more.

To further complement the mesh system, AMR has upgraded its RFID Tracking Tag to a Wi-Fi version and also improved its gas sensor line to include a wireless multi-gas sensor and infrared methane sensor.

AMR also has designed a wireless smoke sensor to combat recent “smoke out” events that occur due to fire retardant conveyor belts.

The multi-gas, infrared methane and smoke sensors all utilize Wi-Fi protocols and can communicate data through the access points to the master station.

AMR also introduced a remote racking system for its circuit breaker product line. The RRS allows an operator to remotely remove a CB from the power center without having to de-energize the entire power center.

This capability increases mine productivity by considerably reducing troubleshooting downtime. It also provides for complete unit change out.

By allowing the operator to remotely remove the unit from up to 30 feet away from the power source, the RRS also significantly reduces the potential for arc flash and further enhances mine safety.

Other products in development include a track switch indicator, mine curtain warning sensor and a complete redesign of the popular CB-PRO.

Most read Archive


Most read Archive