Lubrication Systems for NZ Aluminium Smelters
Groeneveld is well known for their automatic lubrication systems for applications such as wheel loaders, excavators, trucks and trailers. Nevertheless, Groeneveld - part of Timken Company - provides an automatic greasing solution for almost every application. New Zealand Aluminium Smelters (NZAS) uses Groeneveld systems on mobile plant. “Since we started to use the Groeneveld systems, we’ve seen less downtime and a decrease in repair and maintenance,” thus the level-headed explanation of Jim Pickett, Industrial Automotive Engineer at NZAS.
NZAS is New Zealand's only aluminium smelter and is located on Tiwai Peninsula, across the harbour from Bluff in Southland. As Aluminium is a key raw material, NZAS’ Aluminium finds their way through the Asia-Pacific region. NZAS contributes $525 million to the Southland economy (10.5 per cent of Southland's GDP) and $1,600 million in Southland regional sales, with export revenue of around $1 billion each year. Approximately 800 employees and contractors work at the smelter. Making NZAS an important player for the New Zealand economy.
Reliability and support
“Before we installed Groeneveld systems on our equipment, we used the products of a Groeneveld competitor. The lack of technical support and the continuous reliability issues prompted us to look for another supplier and we choose Groeneveld, who have been our supplier for almost 12 years now. Explains Jim Pickett when asked “Why Groeneveld?”
“Since we started to use Groeneveld systems, we’ve seen less downtime and a decrease in repair and maintenance. We used to replace pins and bushes on our machines often, now with the use of Groeneveld automatic lubrication systems, we don’t need to rebuild the machines anymore. They just keep working. We also use Groenevelds’ EP-0 as well as EP-2 grease , Greenlube. “Besides the improved uptime of our machines we’ve experienced a great reliability of the products and fantastic technical support from Groeneveld”, adds Jim.
NZAS is 79.36 per cent owned by Pacific Aluminium and 20.64 per cent owned by Japan's Sumitomo Chemical Company. NZAS is a tolling plant, producing primary aluminium in the form of ingot, billet and rolling block. The majority of the plant's alumina is supplied from the Yarwun and Queensland Alumina refineries at Gladstone in Queensland, Australia. Around 90 per cent of the aluminium produced at NZAS is exported.