Earthmovers On the Move

Pioneering a new technique for transporting some of North America’s largest earthmoving machines, Luminant recently relocated four draglines to new mining areas

Using an innovative and groundbreaking approach, Luminant recently transported four draglines to new mining areas on a specialized 1,000-wheel vehicle.

It’s been an unusual summer for Luminant’s draglines. While these massive machines can typically call one mine home for decades, four of them have recently been on the move. Beckville Mine’s two draglines recently moved to Liberty Mine, the company’s new 4,000-acre mining site in East Texas, which opened in August.

As critical components of a mine, the draglines help remove the overburden, or the rock and soil above the lignite, and eventually return the soil through significant post-mining reclamation efforts.

The twin draglines are some of the largest in the world, each roughly the size of a school gym and weighing 13 million pounds. The two completed their 8- and 15-mile journeys on interconnected trailers and a state-of-the-art 1,000-wheel vehicle.

It usually takes months to disassemble draglines and rebuild them at a new site, but thanks to the ingenuity of our employees and help from transportation experts Mammoet USA South, Inc., we shortened the relocation process to just a few weeks per dragline, says Steve Kopenitz, Luminant senior vice president of mining. Learn more about the industry-leading move in this news release.

With both draglines now operational at Liberty Mine, they’ll help the mine produce up to 3.4 million tons of lignite coal per year. Then they’ll put all that soil back.

Watch what goes into these massive moves:

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