At a time when the Southern and pan-African mining and engineering sectors are facing many challenges, companies are looking for suppliers which can offer them the widest and most robust range of products to assist them in addressing the challenges that they face.
Rand-Air, a leading locally-based equipment hire company with parent company Atlas Copco, has embraced this challenge, offering one of the widest product ranges in the market. This has grown steadily over the years and continues to expand. The latest addition to the mining and construction industries is no exception.
In response to increasing demand, Rand-Air Fleet Manager Craig Swart points out that the company is introducing a booster which is very versatile, and can be used in a number of applications.
“We have had numerous enquiries from customers for higher pressure equipment. This has emanated mainly from the drilling industry, and the natural gas drilling sector in particular. Currently, we have a hire in place with a drilling company in Botswana. We are investing in these boosters both as back up and to service any additional customer requirements, should they arise,” says Craig.
He adds that the Hurricane Booster offers customers a number of advantages. The main one is that the booster can operate at various pressures, and is not limited to one pre-set pressure.
The Hurricane Booster comes with a diesel engine and requires a compressor for feed air.
Craig points out that most competitors focus on providing a booster block only. The Hurricane Booster also has a relatively small physical footprint, because of its vertical set-up and valve design, and weighs less – with the same capacity - which makes it extremely mobile.
The hallmark of a great product is the number of industries that it can be used in. While there are products which are specifically designed for one industry, the Hurricane Booster can be used effectively across a number of industries.
“The Hurricane Booster can be used in mineral exploration drilling, water well drilling, nitrogen boosting, pipeline cleaning, oil drilling and natural gas drilling. At this stage, we are still deciding where the biggest market lies for us. This will probably be the extensive oil and gas markets across Africa.
This is significant, particularly considering the discovery of oil and gas off the east coast of Africa, which offers mineral exploration companies quick wins, which will no doubt be developed over the coming years,” explains Craig.
Two of the most important aspects that companies within the industry look for in a product are fuel efficiency and safety aspects. As an Atlas Copco group product, the Hurricane Booster is being designed and perfected according to exacting international fuel efficiency and safety standards.
“This is particularly important in Africa, where the national grids are under pressure to supply energy and often request that companies to reduce consumption by as much as ten percent. Energy-efficient products such as the Hurricane booster are a perfect way for companies to remain optimally operational on site, and yet also reduce their energy consumption,” Craig adds.
“Demand for this product has been significant enough for Rand-Air to invest in another booster. There is no doubt that this will make a lasting impact on the local and sub-Saharan African market. This product is robust and is specifically designed according to high standards for demanding operating conditions, and is the perfect ‘boost’ to offer our customers,” concludes Craig.