Fortescue and Liebherr establish partnership for zero emission mining equipment
Fortescue Metals Group Ltd (Fortescue) and Liebherr Australia Pty Ltd have signed an agreement for the development and supply of mining haul trucks integrating zero emission power system technologies being developed by Fortescue Future Industries (FFI) and Williams Advanced Engineering (WAE).
The partnership will aim to tackle the challenge of decarbonizing heavy mobile equipment in the mining industry. It will support global initiatives to reduce emissions and it will enable both Fortescue and Liebherr’s Mining product segment to achieve their respective commitments to address global emissions. The partnership will draw from Liebherr’s industry-leading equipment and technology and FFI’s expertise in green technologies to deliver zero emission mining equipment.
The phased supply of haul trucks is anticipated to commence following a two-year joint development period enabling the development and integration of Fortescue’s proprietary-owned battery electric and fuel cell electric power system, into Liebherr’s proprietary-owned base truck. To achieve the target Liebherr will use its vast OEM expertise in the design and manufacturing of machinery and machinery core technology, such as electric drive systems, engines, hydraulics and electronics to engineer, manufacture and supply the new mining haul trucks, in accordance with Fortescue’s requirements.
Liebherr is implementing its defined “Mining Zero Emission Program.” Where the first step was to build the electrified mining product range and the second step is to offer complete fossil fuel free mining equipment for haulage, digging, and dozing by 2030. On this pathway, focus is on modularization to allow the integration of energy type agnostic power trains including alternative fuel combustion engines, battery and fuel cells. Liebherr’s partnership with Fortescue is a key component of this program.
“This project provides an excellent opportunity for us to accelerate the integration of clean energy battery and fuel cell power systems into our mining equipment, which supports our vision and defined strategy to offer future zero emission equipment with the best suitable power train technologies,” said Oliver Weiss, CTO of Liebherr Mining. “As a leader in green technologies for the international heavy industry and a world class mining owner-operator, Fortescue is an ideal partner for decarbonized mining equipment and technology initiatives, sharing the same vision as us.”
The partnership will also assist the future evolution of the Liebherr business. “A mining product that will be developed through a close partnership of two tier one companies, including access to the latest zero emission technology, will create an immense industry opportunity and demand,” said Dr. Jörg Lukowski, executive vice president for sales and marketing of Liebherr Mining. “It also supports our future investment as we expand Liebherr’s already extensive manufacturing capability including at our truck facility in Newport News, VA, and of course into our service and support network in Australia.”
Fortescue Chief Executive Officer, Elizabeth Gaines said, “The signing of this contract with Liebherr marks a significant step in the delivery of our industry leading decarbonization target to achieve net zero Scope 1 and 2 emissions by 2030.
“We look forward to working with Liebherr and WAE to develop and deploy some of the world’s first zero emission large mining haul trucks in our operations, while also establishing an important new business growth opportunity for Fortescue as we diversify to become an integrated green energy and resources company.”
Fortescue Chairman and Founder Dr. Andrew Forrest said, “We are on a march to achieve net zero by 2030, strengthening the economics of our business and making our products acceptable to a zero pollution future. Every day our Fortescue and FFI family take forward the technology, hard work, and willpower of going green, the world mining industry takes one step closer to being the first globally leading industry to go fully green.”