Philippi-Hagenbuch, Inc. of Peoria, Illinois has designed what it says is the first off-highway truck body specifically for hauling oil sands.
Its design minimizes material "loafing" and carry-back while providing a safer environment for truck drivers, longer truck chassis and body life while decreasing box maintenance.
While oil sands have been mined in Ft. McMurray, AB, and other areas for years, mines have had no choice but to accept and use generic "off-the-shelf" truck bodies to transport the extremely abrasive, cohesive material from the mine pit to the hopper. Because of the lack of industry-specific truck body design, compaction of the oil sands through vibration during the haul to its destination resulted in the oil sands amalgamating into an almost solid packed mass. Upon dump, the large load (or loaf) of material that weighs up to 400 tons per load has traditionally jolted the truck resulting in severe truck driver discomfort and exposing them to extreme "whole body vibration."
By using a combination of unique materials to construct the truck body in combination with design, PHIL has eliminated the problem of oil sand sticking in the truck body and at the same time breaks down the oil sands loaf as the truck body dumps. These two extreme benefits to the oil sands industry are accomplished by:
- Inclusion of Hydrophobic and/or Oleophobic material selectively placed on the interior surfaces of the truck body;
- Severe tapering of the body sidewalls from the center of the truck body;
- Receding the rear center of the body floor edge to the sides of the body floor.
By innovating the above features into a body specifically sized and designed for hauling oil sands, oil sands and overburden or cover materials improves the natural material flow from the truck body as it is pivoted to a dump position. The material flows away from the corners and sidewalls of the truck body where carry-back would normally begin. The outwardly tapered body sides are at such severe angles, the load is no longer being contained in a "channel" environment allowing the load to further break down. Because the truck and body no longer jolt, the drivers experience is much more subtle, substantially decreasing their "whole body vibration."