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The challenge

Hard rock can be hard going

Millions of tonnes of rock are cut, broken or drilled every month. A substantial portion of these rocks are hard, as seen by their high breakage strength.

Traditional rock-cutting materials wear quickly, reducing the rate of production from mining. The higher the rock strength, the lower the production rate.

Even current advanced materials, such as tungsten carbide with its moderate cutting strength, have poor wear resistance against hard minerals such as quartz and feldspar and so cutting materials can become blunt very quickly and halt mine production.

Our response

Cutting smarter, not harder

We developed Super Material Abrasive Resistant Tools (SMART*CUT) which incorporate diamond-composite cutting elements to improve the efficiency of rock-cutting operations.

A faster, more efficient rock cutting tool.

One major development, which led to our SMART*CUT patent, is the advance made in the performance of both the diamond composite and its binder material. This produced a strong bond between the diamond composite and the holding assembly.

SMART*CUT incorporates the advanced, high wear resistant materials into cutting tips in picks, drilling bits and other rock breakage tools.

With its small and compact cutting head system, SMART*CUT is designed to cut any hard rock at a minimum specific energy, and also to operate in difficult, selective and narrow vein mines under tight and hazardous environmental conditions.

The results

Delivering a diamond solution

SMART*CUT is delivering cost-effective and efficient cutting tools for mining, civil construction and manufacturing.

In the exploration and mining industries, longer-lasting and more productive SMART*CUT drill bits are providing large savings in drilling operations.

In manufacturing industries, indexable cutting inserts incorporating SMART*CUT technologies are giving operators superior performance over conventional tungsten carbide, since SMART*CUT can:

  • operate at higher cutting temperatures
  • eliminate or at least reduce the need for environmentally damaging cooling fluids
  • enable faster and more economical high-speed machining operations.

With its ability to cut hard and soft rock, SMART*CUT has the potential to significantly improve production efficiency and reduce costs.

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