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Sandvik’s stand at the Sweden–Australia High-Level Sustainable Mining Summit in Sydney drew its fair share of interested parties, including two Swedish royals.

Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Victoria and His Royal Highness Prince Daniel joined attendees to take a look at Sandvik’s extensive real-world battery-electric vehicle (BEV) offerings.

The summit, held on February 15, attracted a range of mining leaders and dignitaries.

Sandvik Mining and Rock Solutions vice president for sales area Australia and New Zealand Wayne Scrivens was able to discuss the use of BEV technology in Australia with Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel.

A demonstration of Sandvik’s AutoMine Training Simulator was provided to the royals by Sandvik technical support manager, mine automation Tommi Rautio.

Scrivens was also a participant in a panel discussion moderated by BHP manager for zero-emission fleet, Bree Sipavicius, looking at electrified and automated mines.

“Australian miners are committed to creating a more sustainable mining industry and the technologies being created by Swedish companies like Sandvik are helping to make this a reality,” Scrivens said.

“It was a pleasure to explain to the royal couple how Sandvik battery-electric trucks and underground loaders are being successfully trialled in Australia and how this is lowering emissions and creating a safer working environment.

“Australia enjoys excellent business and trade ties with Sweden, which makes collaboration between the two countries both straightforward and enjoyable.”

Panel discussions on the day touched on topics such as electrification, innovation, connectivity, automation, critical minerals and decarbonisation.

“Right now, in Australia alone we have an 18-tonne Sandvik LH518B BEV underground loader and 50-tonne Sandvik TH550B BEV truck being trialled at a Gold Fields’ St Ives operation on Western Australia’s eastern goldfields, as well as another LH518B in operation at Agnico Eagle’s Fosterville operation in Victoria,” Scrivens said.

“Add to that the 65-tonne Sandvik TH665B BEV truck set to begin operation with Barminco at AngloGold Ashanti’s Sunrise Dam operation in WA and you begin to understand how committed we are to the roll-out of battery electric technology.”

For Scrivens, a highlight of the summit was sharing and gaining insights into automation and electrification solutions.

“Sandvik’s AutoMine solution is helping to transform the mining sector by moving operators away from the underground environment up to the surface where it’s safer,” he said.

“It was fascinating to discuss the ongoing potential this kind of technology has to increase productivity and reduce downtime.”