PICTURE OF THE WEEK “Super-Strong Mine Mole from Tatra Force”

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Three special frame chassis from the Tatra Force truck model line were prepared and delivered complete with a super strong superstructure for a special mission.

The Kopřivnice, Czech Republic built trucks vehicles will be used to transport explosives into deep mines. The complexity of the operation is therefore obvious. These are usually cramped spaces requiring high manoeuvrability and efficient throughput. Narrow mining areas are dusty and humid environments (75% to 100%) with dangerous and sharp turns. Aggressive and corrosive aqueous mine acids have also to be coped with. The presence of micro-dispersed, electrically conductive dust is also unpleasant. This significantly brings on strong and rapid corrosion of the vehicles’ metal parts. It may be irrelevant that these vehicles carry dangerous goods but the comfort and quality of driving even in difficult terrain is welcome. Also, the significantly less stress provided from the unique Tatra superstructure (body) with its low cab construction is of great benefit.

Based on Tatra’s proven fire tender chassis, it features a rear steered axle. The spec includes wheel hub reduction, Tatra’s own 14 TS 210-N gearbox, a two-door middle cab, so called ‘Vojta”, with ROPS-FOPS protection systems, drum brakes and a 4182 mm wheelbase.

Vehicles designed for operation in deep mines have the same wheelbase and rear axle control system (VSE) as the trucks which has been manufactured and delivered to customers in Chile some months ago. The 10-tonne front and rear axles feature air suspension, complemented by stabilizers.

The drive is provided by an air-directly cooled eight-cylinder Euro 5 diesel engine T3D-928-21 equipped with an electric preheating system. The maximum power is tuned to the level of 375hp/280 kW and peak torque reached at 1,800 Nm.

The 14-speed mechanical transmission with the Tatra-Norgren electronic gearshift system has a torque divider to ensure permanent wheel drive on both axles. With 385/65 R 22.5 tyres, the ‘Tatra 815-7T5R21.42ZC 4×4.1R, affectionately known as the Mole’ can wade through 1,200mm of water. Milan Olšanský – ITOY