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In for the long haul

Normet provides advanced solutions for use in a wide variety of underground mining and tunnel construction environments, covering areas such as rock support, explosive charging, logistics, and lifting and installation. Solutions are drawn from Normet’s steadily expanding palette of equipment, construction chemicals, and Life Time Care services.

Cooperation has long been a Normet watchword, whether it takes the form of working with leading partners in R&D, automation, and industrial design or partnering with customers to help develop their working methods and maximise the added value that Normet solutions offer and take advantage of the latest know-how.

Normet’s origins lie in developing, manufacturing, and supplying mobile equipment, vehicles, and services for use underground. During its half century in the business, Normet has delivered more than 9,000 vehicles, covering everything from hauling and concrete spraying to explosives charging, and scaling, and vehicles for transporting men and materials. Virtually no two of these have been alike, as customisation has very much been the name of the game from early on.

Equipment is only part of the company’s offering, though, as Normet’s strategy today is very much a solutions-driven one. This has seen the company expand its offering into the construction chemicals area, for example, and develop a comprehensive portfolio of Life Time Care services.

The acquisition of TAM International – a specialist in chemicals and systems for waterproofing, leak sealing, repair, and protection – a few years ago, for example, played an important part in making Normet a leading specialist supplier of complete process solutions to the global underground mining and tunnelling sector. Normet is now much better positioned to act as a partner that can help customer’s projects run more smoothly. In practical terms, this typically translates into very tangible benefits such as higher tunnelling speeds, lower overall costs, and simpler project management.

More recently, the acquisition of Norwegianbased Dynamic Rock Support and its new-generation, energy-absorbent D-Bolt system has extended Normet’s ability to act as a total solution provider in the ground support and rock reinforcement field. The D-Bolt system is an ideal complement for Normet’s expertise in resin and cement-based bolt grouts and injection-based rock mass reinforcement know-how.

All of these developments have seen Normet become a global market leader in its field, with sales and service companies and close to 1,000 employees in 24 countries around the world.

Normet’s strategy today is very much a solutions-driven one and has seen the company expand its offering in the construction chemicals area and develop a comprehensive portfolio of Life Time Care services. The Crossrail project in London is one of many that use Normet’s products. Photo: © Crossrail.

Tough products for tough sites

Normet’s mobile sprayers, transmixers, and agitators are the outcome of decades of experience and close links with the company’s tunnelling and mining customers. Many of the concrete sprayers and concrete transportation units delivered over the years are still in use, thanks to their excellent reliability and durability and Normet’s Life Time Care programme.

All Spraymec models are available in an electro- or diesel-hydraulic configuration, with an optional on-board compressor. Transmixers and agitators can be supplied with a range of different horizontal or inclined bowls, and all feature powerful engines for excellent operating speed.

Normet’s range of Charmec underground explosive chargers is designed to meet all the needs of the techniques used in modern emulsion and water gel charging processes, which sensitise explosives while they are on the charging unit. Its Scamec units, for their part, are designed to make scaling loose rock manually a thing of the past and feature hydraulic impact hammers for scaling hard rock or pick units for primary scaling in soft and stratified rock and secondary scaling.

Normet’s scissor lifts are designed for load lifting and installation work in mines and lowprofile tunnels, such as roof reinforcement, charging explosives, hanging cables, and installing pipes and ventilation equipment; while its Himec lifting vehicles are ideal for medium- and heavy-duty work in practically any tunnel profile. Normet also supplies a full range of rubber-tyred underground transport vehicles.

A lifetime commitment

Even the best machines need regular maintenance and care to ensure that they can go on performing at their best. Normet’s Life Time Care programme is designed to provide just that and ensure that customers’ machines can always be relied on to deliver industry-leading performance.

In addition to a traditional spare part service, Normet offers an extensive range of valueadded services such as service contracts, audits, training, and rebuilds, all tailored to customers’ specific needs.

Having a network of sales and service companies and partners worldwide is central to the success of the programme, and ensures that wherever customers are – in the centre of Stockholm, the Australian outback, or the Andes in Chile – they always have access to Normet’s expertise.

The efficient and highly professional maintenance offered by Normet’s service engineers as part of service contracts, for example, is designed to help make customers’ operations safer and more productive and ensure that their equipment is available precisely when and where it is needed.

Normet’s service offering also covers areas such as scheduled inspections, supervision, periodic maintenance, and machine usage reviews. Normet has also developed an on-site audit concept to determine the current condition of any Normet vehicle out in the field.

Replacing parts with genuine, high-quality spares is central to ensuring the extended lifetime of Normet equipment, and these can be delivered anywhere at short notice. Normet also offers customers the opportunity to modify and modernise their machines and add new features. As rebuilding can be a cost-effective alternative to investing in new equipment in some cases, it is also part of Normet’s Life Time Care programme.

The Spraymec 8100 VC features Normet’s latest state-of-the-art control system and offers an extensive range of features. These include low-pulsation spraying and pumping, highly accurate accelerator dosing and boom and nozzle positioning, and real-time control and fault diagnostics.
> Jukka Pihlava
(Published in HighTech Finland 2013)