Miller Argent’s Ffos-y-fran mining facility has reached the landmark figure of 5 Mt of processed coal. After seven years of refining its processes, the huge land reclamation project based in Merthyr Tydfil, South Wales, now produces up 1 Mt/y of coal. Much of the finished product is used to fuel nearby Aberthaw Power Station, which generates enough electricity to power five cities the size of Cardiff. Port Talbot Steelworks is also a beneficiary, using the fuel to produce steel products used in heavy construction, as well as hundreds of every day consumer items such as cars.Finning has been an integral part of the project since its inception in 2007. Although the UK’s exclusive Caterpillar dealer has supplied a fleet of more than 50 Cat machines, its involvement goes way beyond equipment. Finning also works with Miller Argent to manage onsite solutions, with field based engineers, analysts and operation managers permanently stationed at the coal mining facility.Jason Davies, Health and Safety Advisor for Miller Argent at the Ffos-y-fran site commented on this relationship with Finning: “Over the last 7 years at Ffos-y-fran, Finning have provided an exemplary service with the on site repair and maintenance team. Together with us at Miller Argent, we have ensured plant productivity is maximised and through this process our working relationship has grown stronger each year. The efficient extraction of coal from Ffos-y-fran can only be achieved by the full involvement from both our teams, ensuring targets are met and mining equipment well maintained. To hit 5 Mt is a great achievement, but if our operation were not profitable it would be inconsequential.”The Ffos-y-fran facility has also provided a raft of opportunities for local young employment, with three Finning apprentices currently on site and two integrated into mining operations within the local region. The three mining engineer apprentices and two admin apprentices are being involved fully in the operation. These young professionals are acquiring essential knowledge and skills in the process, therefore enabling a prosperous future within the plant sector.Denis O’Riordan, Mining Operations Manger for Finning in the South West, added: “Finning are excited to be integrated in the Ffos-y-fan mining project to such an influential level. The 51 Cat machines on site, from articulated dump trucks to hydraulic excavators, perform a range of strenuous tasks with premium fuel efficiency. However, it is the additional managed solutions Finning provide that optimises the value we provide to Miller Argent.”He adds: “I work with a dedicated team of ten Finning staff, from engineers to project planners who all contribute greatly to the day to day running of the site. With the use of Finsight® we are able to monitor all operational activity, from operator performance to fuel economy to the site layout, making sure that everything is running as efficiently, productively and most importantly as profitably as possible. The last seven years have been a real benefit for both ourselves at Finning and Miller Argent. I look forward to the Ffos-y-fan project achieving the next 5 Mt.”The impressive list of Caterpillar equipment at the site includes 28 Cat 777F mining trucks, four Cat D9 dozers, two Cat 16M motor graders, two Cat 773B mining trucks, two Cat 725 ADTs, two Cat 824H wheel dozers, two Cat 325 hydraulic excavators, two Cat 980H wheel loaders, one Cat 735 ADT, one Cat 775 mining truck, one Cat 972H wheel loader, one Cat 966H wheel loader, one Cat 330DL hydraulic excavator, one Cat TH63 telehandler and one Cat 216 skid steer loader.