Global technology company ABB has helped Atalaya Mining to optimize mill availability and performance by combining its gearless mill drive (GMD) with ongoing life-cycle management support and a digital condition monitoring solution through a long-term service agreement (LTSA).

ABB technology has helped Atalaya Mining to optimize mill availability and performance at Project Riotinto, Andalucía. Digital solution ABB Ability™ Predictive Maintenance for grinding is part of the service for the ABB gearless mill drive on site. ABB is following a long-term service agreement with Atalaya Mining, supported by a dedicated life-cycle manager to ensure optimized operations and continuous maintenance improvements.


The mining company, which produces copper concentrates and silver by-product at its Project Riotinto site in the Andalucía region of southwest Spain, uses an ABB GMD, the most powerful mill drive system on the market. It is considered as the “workhorse” for grinding operations, providing reliability and availability for processing plants such as Riotinto, which has a processing capacity of up to 15 Mtpa.

After its recent expansion, Riotinto mine increased its annual copper production target to approximately 60,000 tons per year. The ABB long-term service agreement with an ABB Life-cycle Manager has supported a production record at the mine in 2020 and production was approximately the same in 2021.


Through the service program, Atalaya Mining benefits from life-cycle management to plan, coordinate, and execute services, including corrective, preventive, and predictive system maintenance with rapid response to emergency calls and an adaptive approach to meet modifications in production, maintenance, or shutdown schedules. This means minimizing the risk of costly unscheduled downtime, extending the life of installed systems, and optimizing process performance.

At the same time, ABB Ability Predictive Maintenance for grinding, a digital condition monitoring solution to maintain, assess, and analyze GMD systems and increase safety through continuous checks, has been deployed. It considers past and real-time data to anticipate maintenance requirements and to avoid unplanned production downtime.


Overall, the LTSA maximizes availability, optimizes asset performance, and facilitates safe operation of the equipment through a single-point-of-contact, ABB’s Remote Diagnostic Services, routine maintenance, and upgrades.

The combination of ABB GMD design, the continuous monitoring, and the use of ABB Ability Predictive Maintenance for grinding means that the system is working at its highest efficiency. ABB will continue to support Atalaya Mining through machine operation and routine maintenance over the long term.

ABB has provided more than 150 gearless mill drives to customers around the world over the last fifty years. ABB gearless mill drives draw on the ABB distributed control system, ABB Ability System 800xA and offer advanced mill control functions including frozen charge detection, frozen charge remover, controlled rollback, automatic positioning, and advanced monitoring.  


ABB is a leading global technology company that energizes the transformation of society and industry to achieve a more productive, sustainable future. ABB’s Process Automation business is a leader in automation, electrification, and digitalization for the process and hybrid industries. The company serves customers with a broad portfolio of products, systems, and end-to-end solutions, including a top-rated distributed control system, software, and life-cycle services, industry-specific products as well as measurement and analytics, marine, and turbocharging offerings. ABB builds on its deep domain expertise, diverse team, and global footprint, and is dedicated to helping customers increase competitiveness, improve their return on investment, and run safe, smart, and sustainable operations.. For more information, visit

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