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MacLean Engineering acquires underground testing facility

Manufacturing company will use facility for mining “innovation hub”
Stella Holloway, general manager at MacLean Engineering’s Sudbury operations, said the company’s recently acquired underground facility would help further research and development of new products and technologies. (Paul Gomirato/PG Creative photo)

Equipment manufacturer MacLean Engineering has acquired an underground facility that will be used to test new technology.

Located in the Sudbury neighbourhood of Lively, the test facility was first developed by Mining Technologies International (now Komatsu), led by Bob Lipic, in 2012. It’s situated less than 10 minutes from the MacLean sales, service and support centre.

The property includes an approximately 300-metre (1,000-foot) underground ramp down to a depth of some 40 metres (120 feet), at an average grade of 15 per cent. The underground facility also includes an excavated cavern where shaft jumbo mucking training had previously been conducted, along with a 4,500 square-metre (15,000-square-foot) building on a three-hectare (eight-acre) site footprint.

The company said it would “honour the tradition of mining entrepreneurship” that was started in 2012.

“We are thrilled to now have unfettered access to an underground facility that gives us a research and development test bed for new products and new technologies, a mine-equivalent setting for conducting quality assurance/quality control checks on MacLean equipment prior to shipping, a place where employees and customers alike can be given hands-on exposure to our equipment in the working environment, as well as a great location for conducting photo and video shoots,” said Stella Holloway, general manager for MacLean’s Sudbury operations, in a Sept. 28 news release.

Founded in 1973, MacLean Engineering designs, manufactures, markets and supports mobile equipment for the mining, municipal, environmental and industrial goods sectors. Headquartered in Collingwood, the company has branch offices in Canada, Mexico, Peru, South Africa and Australia.