One way of solving the problem of continual replacement of both chains and chain sprockets in face conveyors is to increase the contact surface, thus reducing surface pressure and wear. Bucyrus, a leader in high productivity mining equipment, has done exactly this with its new Power Chain. Using modern chain production methods, the design almost halves surface pressure at contact points. These production methods involve hot-forming of chain links, combining the use of round-steel and forged elements, or rolled profiles and forged elements. The Power Chain is currently available in three sizes namely 34 x 110 mm, 42 x 140 mm and 52 x 175 mm. The latter is designed to be used with up to 3 x 1,200 kW. Another Power Chain is under development which will be suitable for up to 3 x 1,800 kW. It completed testing in November 2007. The arc-shaped broad cross-section of the flight bars allows a low-profile line pan, while the special shape of the chain provides a large running surface. This drastically reduces surface pressure and wear at chain joints – resulting in significantly longer service life of chain and drive sprocket than conventional systems. Reduced contact pressure also means minimum friction and lowest power requirements. It features a patented method for attaching the flight bar and higher chain breaking force to allow greater loading of conveyor, increasing conveying capacity. The Power Chain can be retrofitted to existing face conveyors to increase their capacity and service life. Power Chains are currently being prepared for several installations in Australia and USA.