The first DA45-7 articulated dump truck (ADT) from Develon, formerly Doosan Construction Equipment, has been sold in Italy and is at work in the chalk basin of Roccastrada. The machine was purchased as it was seen as the best suited for the movement of rock in the region’s so-called ‘Chalk Valley’ quarries.
The DA45-7 ADT is working in the province of Grosseto, in the heartland of the Tuscan Maremma, home to one of Italy’s largest chalk deposits, renowned for the purity and the whiteness of its stone. The new machine is owned by Fibran Group, a Greek multinational, with production sites in seven European countries and commercial activities in over 60 countries around the world, which purchased its first chalk quarry and processing plant in the area back in 2009.
In 2021, Fibran acquired Gessi Roccastrada, the company that owned the two largest natural chalk quarries and plants in the Tuscan mining basin. This consolidated Fibran’s presence in the Italian and European markets for dry construction systems and chalk-based building materials. Today, Fibran owns and manages a total of 700 hectares in ‘Chalk Valley’, including three active quarries and two undergoing environmental restoration, with deposits that could potentially be exploited in decades to come.
The acquisition of Gessi Roccastrada allowed the Fibran group to standardise extractive operations at its two production sites, with both benefiting from effective synergies. The quarries serve the following two production sites: Fibran SpA, which specializes in the production of dry construction solutions (coated chalk slabs, grouts, metal devices and accessories) and Gessi Roccastrada, experts in the production of chalk blocks for interior walls and powdered chalk.
The optimisation of quarry machinery plays an important role in the management of extractive operations. The movement of earth and chalk rock is a crucial part of the process and recently required the addition of a new dump truck to the Fibran fleet.
Felice Tirabasso, Chief Technology Officer of Fibran and Gessi Roccastrada, has been recognised as an expert in quarrying operations in Italy and abroad for over 25 years. After a meticulous selection process, his choice fell decisively on the new Develon DA45-7 6x6 ADT, the first to be sold in Italy in the 45 tonne class.
Since the machine joined the fleet, it has been used in the earth moving operations needed to reveal surface rock and manage at least 130 metres of terracing.
At the ‘Chalk Valley’ quarry, the DA45-7 transports both chalk rock and waste soil from surface excavations over an average in-out distance of four kilometres. This type of work demands a fast-moving, highly manoeuvrable vehicle and the DA45-7 has proved to be just the job.
As Felice Tirabasso explains, “Many factors contributed to our choice of the DA45-7 dump truck. A great deal of care went into the selection process, thanks in no small way to Develon’s willingness to show me the vehicle in action elsewhere, in central-northern England in particular, where the machine is also being used in quarrying. One extremely important feature of this machine compared to others on the market, is its separate control of its front axle and free-swinging rear tandem bogie, which enables the vehicle to follow the terrain and prevents slippage and sliding. The DA45-7 is also very simple and robust, with a high load capacity, excellent engine power and an exceptionally comfortable cab, something we pay a great deal of attention to with a view to maximising operator wellbeing.”
Like all Develon ADTs, the permanent, six-wheel-drive DA45-7 model stands out for the front-mounted turning ring, which ensures equal load distribution even under tight steering. Working in conjunction with free-swinging rear tandem bogie, the machine’s configuration ensures even weight distribution on the tyres and guarantees permanent contact and traction at all six wheels. And even power distribution means excellent performance.
The DA45-7 is equipped with a new cab and self-levelling front suspensions that work independently to suit ground conditions and to give the operator a truly comfortable working environment.
The dynamic new look of the DA45-7 reflects its superb performance, power and strength. The machine also sets new standards for the sector in terms of load capacity, consumption, precision control, reliability, durability, operating costs and low maintenance requirements.
Another factor behind the choice made by Fibran is the machine’s reduced CO2 emissions and its low impact in industrial and quarrying operations.
Fibran is renowned for its commitment to ecology and its efforts to minimise the impact on the environment. This is evident from the company’s activities in recent years, which have focused on reducing emissions and introducing Industry 4.0 management systems for vehicles and systems, with the objective of making the ‘Chalk Valley’ sustainable and protecting the ecosystem of one of Italy’s largest chalk extraction basins.
“The DA45-7 is the first Develon vehicle in Chalk Valley,” Tirabasso explains, “but we are so happy with it that we are already evaluating the option of adding the brand’s excavators to our fleet. We are extremely grateful to Develon for having respected the agreed delivery time, for the excellent sales support given us by Develon personnel, especially Norman Tasca and Michele Cammisa, for the technical support offered by Develon’s demonstrator and trainer, Giuseppe Santo, and for the effective synergy established with the dealer, Materozzi, especially with salesman, Tommaso Musetti and owner, Gabrio Materozzi. Their organisation’s aftersales service goes far beyond the usual technical assistance and includes scheduled maintenance complete with preventive servicing.”
Exclusive Develon importer for the ten provinces of the Tuscany region for over six years, Materozzi snc was formed in the 1960s by Rino Materozzi, Gabrio’s father.
The business stands out for its efficient spares department, extremely well-equipped main workshop, mobile workshops for on-site servicing, and for the rapid, effective service that customers appreciate so much.
“We are proud to have established relations with a company recognised as a leader in chalk quarrying and processing, not only here in Tuscany but nationally and internationally too,” affirms Tommaso Musetti, who handled negotiations for the sale of the DA45-7 in conjunction with Gabrio Materozzi. “The relationship of trust we have established with Fibran makes us confident that this is just the beginning of a winning partnership for both companies.”