The previous suite of Joy equipment, commissioned at the MBlock coking coal project during 1998, will be returned to the Joy Wadeville plant during 2004 for its first rebuild after mining approximately 3 million tonnes (3.3 million tons).
The refurbished continuous miner will be upgraded with the latest technologies including JNAII, latest gearcase technology, surface communications, dusthood and MCH3.
The shuttle cars will also be upgraded to include the latest Joy technology.
The MBlock project will close in April of next year and the refurbished Joy equipment will also be sent to the 3Main section, which is located about 9km from MBlock.
The 3Main section will be a bord and pillar operation through a high wall with three main drives and two sections that are expected to mine approximately 120,000 tonnes (132,300 tons) per month.
International Longwall News previously reported in May last year the Wankie commissioning of the US$88 million underground coal mine.
The announcement meant Wankie would be able to continue to provide coking coal for domestic consumption and to the new 3 Main Underground Mine plant.
The development was the one shining light on the horizon for Wankie, who had been hit hard by the country's extreme economic circumstances, announcing a US$10 billion loss in September last year.
The loss was attributed to the untenable position the company found itself in, whereby, its prices were controlled yet supplier's prices were not controlled. Furthermore, critical and maintenance spares sourced from local suppliers were priced on the basis of parallel market exchange rates.
Foreign currency shortages, increase in borrowing costs, price controls, transport constraints and the devaluation of the Zimbabwe dollar against major currencies, affected the company's operations.