An innovation by Townsville fabrication company Skopit Mining Services has been named a finalist in the 2020 Queensland Mining Awards, which celebrates the spirit of innovation, excellence and collaboration. Owner of Skopit Mining Services, John Bowey, designed the Structural Steel Clamping System which is being recognised for its utility in plant sites and workshops, and is now taking centre stage as a finalist in the Best Product Launch Category.
“Our Structural Steel Clamping System provides a safer, quicker and more economical alternative when installing new equipment to existing structural steelwork,” says John.
“Designed for ease of installation, it can be done by a single person with minimal experience. Once installed the brackets, bolts, base plates, unistrut or any other fastener can be bolted to the Structural Steel Clamp to secure any new equipment.”
The Structural Steel Clamping System increases safety and productivity, requires less maintenance, has multiple cost saving benefits, and is the only clamp that has multi attachment capabilities.
“Having worked in coal wash plants over the years, I saw the existing steelwork as a piece of structure underutilised,” he says.
“There are so many industries that use steelwork as the main building block of vast and huge processing facilities that also would benefit from using this clamping system. It is the only clamp that has multi attachment capabilities, allowing any other type of fastening product to be attached to it.
“Being able to eliminate hot work in and around coal and mineral processing facilities, or any other industry such as energy, rail and refineries is a step towards achieving zero harm one day, offering a hugely versatile solution to a problem not many knew they had.”
The Clamping System is locally manufactured in Skopit’s Townsville workshop, and going forward, John makes note of their future plans to explore the national and international market.
“We manufacture the whole product at our workshop here in Townsville and get it galvanised locally, all made here in North Queensland ready for the national and international markets that we will be exploring shortly,” continues John.
Hosted by the Bowen Basin Mining Club and in partnership with the Queensland Resources Council, the 2020 Queensland Mining Awards aim to recognise mining companies, suppliers and contractors who are pushing the boundaries in collaboration, productivity and engagement.
The event celebrates innovation and mining excellence while providing the opportunity for finalists to network with industry peers. John is one of four finalists in the Best Product Launch category to have the opportunity to present their successes to a large, diverse group of key industry influencers, and be recognised for his hard work and entrepreneurial spirit.
“It feels great to be nominated as a finalist, especially out of such a large list of candidates,” says John.
“The nomination gets us more exposure into the mining and resource industry throughout Queensland and Australia, which is extremely beneficial for the business.”
Bowen Basin Mining Club director Jodie Currie said submissions were extremely competitive, demonstrating that Queensland businesses continued to lead the way in innovative thinking.
“Our most popular category was the Innovation (METS) Award, with a number of outstanding innovations on the table. Judges were looking for quantifiable outcomes and future applications – and they weren’t disappointed,” Ms Currie said.
The presentation will take place on September 23, 2020 at the Mackay Entertainment and Convention Centre. Good luck John!
Georgie Desailly for BDmag.