Are you aware?
It’s all about transparency and empowering people!
In mines without any good communication infrastructure and without any means for tracking of assets, productivity is usually quite low and hard to increase due to a big lack of information and transparency during a shift. Here, you can say that situational awareness is, at its best, limited to a poor and noisy radio channel.
A big step forward is to address these issues and deploy a good and modern standardized communication infrastructure. Suddenly situational awareness can be obtained in a mine control center from where the shift can be monitored which leads to time thieves being avoided.
However, even in mines that are regarded to be in the forefront of technology with a good communication and positioning infrastructure, information is still not for all. Usually a miner does not know about the whereabouts of colleagues, nor where machines, equipment or vehicles are. In best cases, you can call up to the control room and ask for information – if they have time.
At the control room of an average size mine, perhaps with 100+ miners in the shift, the operators in the control room would be drowned with giving answers to simple questions if all the miners had phones. The logic is clear:
- Little spread or use of information -> little or no communication which leads to a lot of wasted time as people do not communicate.
- A good communication network and a good spread of mine phones -> higher degree of communication to the control room where the information reside. This can reduce time wasted to a high degree, but the drawback is that this could lead to a very stressful situation in the control room and maybe less focus on important tasks.
Luckily, all these problems can now easily be mitigated with the advent of two new revolutionary products from Mobilaris. These products make superior situational awareness no longer a prerogative for personnel in the mining control center but instead, a tool for anyone in the mine.
Enter Mobilaris Onboard™ and Mobilaris Pocket Mine™. With these new products, any miner will be able to know what´s going on in the mine. Whether you would like to know the ETA of a certain mine truck, the location of a drill rig, the whereabouts of a maintenance personnel or the location of a water pump, you will now be able to have all information at your fingertips.
Running on standard tablets or smartphones, the Mobilaris Onboard™ and Mobilaris Pocket Mine™ gets all the real-time information about personnel, equipment and vehicles from the centralized Mobilaris Mining Intelligence™ solution. All asset information including mine maps is shown in 3D and is locally stored persistently on the tablets so that you can use it even when you are out of network coverage.
Investigations have shown that a lot of the wasted time that decrease productivity in underground mining can be avoided if personnel simply have the necessary information at hands. Now, with Mobilaris Onboard™ and Mobilaris Pocket Mine™ they have the tools to pic those “low-hanging-fruits”. Transparency will not be a luxury for a selected few anymore.
In the recent podcast – Mining Frontrunners, Lundin Mining COO Peter Richardson elaborates about the effect of increased transparency in mines – “This will improve our productivity because people will not be sitting and waiting for someone to come and tell them what to do, the system will be automated and making decisions what to do”, Peter continues – “Decision making will be a lot faster”.
Are you aware?
A recent business case project in a mine in Canada showed that some of the values demonstrated by introducing Mobilaris Mining Intelligence™ were:
- Before, you could assume that 75% of the time looking for equipment would take anywhere from 20 min – 2 hours, and the remaining 25% greater than 2 hours to several shifts. This represented a significant loss of productive time in a typical 12-hour shift. Using Mobilaris Mining Intelligence™, equipment could be localized instantly
- We also know from line-up meetings; supervisors primarily describe verbally where a piece of equipment of tool can be found. The description is usually loose in detail, with no visual aids or data on specific location. This further exacerbates the problem in looking for equipment, especially non routine items like rammer jammers, switch boxes, power cables, drill gear boxes etc. Power cable is an excellent example of a piece of equipment available the last shift worked, but “walked away” on the next shift as another job/crew required use of the cable. The return shift now arrives expecting the cable to be there, now realizing it is gone and now an additional cable (or the existing one) needs to be found. Use of Mobilaris Mining Intelligence™ would greatly reduce this waste of time as exact location can be prescribed and visually presented in a line-up meeting.
- Increased ability to have resources at the right place at the right time
- The ability to monitor in real time if work is being done to standard, and when it begins to deviate from standard, we can take action.
- The ability to re-assign/change assets to meet production targets if actual performance is falling behind targets – before the shift ends and becomes unrecoverable.
Another great example of the effect of increased transparency, is a mine in the US where the introduction of Mobilaris Mining Intelligence™ showed an increase of face utilization by 35-40 minutes per shift.
These are all some examples from introducing the Mobilaris Mining Intelligence™ in a control room. But, think about the effect when this increased transparency scales-up and empowers everyone in the mine. Now the tools are here, enter Mobilaris Onboard™ and Mobilaris Pocket Mine™.
Mobilaris OnboardTM – customer case
Expect more to come.