Here are some examples of how Smart Solutions has delivered productivity, safety and availability benefits to working mine operations.
Underground mining: Joy longwall systems
Smart connected Joy longwall systems include complex networks linked to highly sensitive gyroscopes, and thousands of sensors that are constantly reporting out to our Smart Solutions data collection and analytics teams on the performance and health of the system.
During operation, as the longwall system moves forward, the roof is collapsing behind it. Sensors placed in the roof supports transmit data to the surface.
Complex algorithms translate the data points into visual information that can predict significant changes in operating conditions in the mine.
“In one example, the roof support data analysed by Komatsu’s algorithms detected a roof cavity forming. With advanced analytics, we were able to predict roof instability, impossible to see with the naked eye, and define the root cause for those changes. This allowed for immediate actions that impacted the overall mine productivity.”
– Rudie Boshoff, Global Director – Lifecycle Management and Smart Solutions
Surface mining: P&H electric rope shovels
Smart Solutions team members helped a mining client reduce operator-induced damage on its fleet of electric rope shovels, avoiding additional maintenance costs, and increasing the availability and productivity of the fleet.
“Shovel operators were not aware of the damaging effect swing impacts were having on their machines. Collisions between the dipper and the bank while swinging accumulate damage in the handle structure and ultimately result in cracking that requires significant machine downtime and cost to fix.
“Using combined offerings customised as a Smart Solutions package, we were able to engage with mine management to help them understand how established operating behaviours and environmental conditions combined to increase the likelihood of swing impacts.
“We used data from the machines to illustrate the problem. We quantified how individual collisions contributed to the overall damage observed on the machine. All this information was used to guide an operator training plan, to set targets for improvement and to monitor ongoing performance.
"By providing that visibility and understanding, we were able to achieve an annual reduction of 40% in swing impacts, reducing wear on the machines and increasing availability.”
– Anthony Reid, Senior Manager – Analytics