Open cast coal mine

Open cast coal mine

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Credit: TONY CRADDOCK/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Filtered photograph of a massive bucket wheel excavator at an open cast coal mine near Cologne, West Germany. The excavator is operated by a crew of five, moving up to 110,000 cubic meters of coal or earth every day. Each machine is 220 meters in length, 85 meters high, with a gross weight of 13000 tons. It is capable of moving at speeds of up to 10 meters per minute. Each bucket on the excavator's wheel (left of image) is large enough to hold a small car. The vast scale of the excavator means that it has to be constructed on site, taking around two years to complete. Orange graduated filter.

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Keywords: bucket wheel excavator, coal mine, excavator, germany, mining industry, open cast mining, open-cast, opencast

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