Engineering

Huge Dump Trucks-Robots on Construction Site in Australia

The mining group Rio Tinto has only automated Schwerstlaster for a few days in two Australian iron ore mines. They are controlled by an operations center, which is 1200 km. If you can see the huge trucks, you can hardly believe that they come off without a driver. Soon, Rio Tinto will operate even trains and the drilling operation without people.

The dump trucks that are controlled as if by magic drive Yandicoogina and Nammuldi in Western Australia driving them into the two mines. 69 “Dump Trucks-Robots” are in use and allow a mine to owork ever 24 hours 365 days a year. The trucks have no holidays, no shift and don’t get sick.

Huge Dump Trucks-Robots on Construction Site in Australia operate 365 days around the clock 

Josh Bennet, who is responsible for the technical operation of the Yandicoogina mine, stresses also the security benefits of the autonomously driving big trucks. So, you could avoid accidents due to fatigue or carelessness of the driver. Also, there were significant savings, because no driver more must be flown, housed in the remote areas and provides, where the mines are located.

Huge Dump Trucks-Robots on Construction Site in Australia_
Foto: Rio Tinto | Australian Mining Operations

On the basis of the positive experience with the operation of automated Dump Trucks-Robots, Rio Tinto now works on the implementation of a plan for a stand-alone mining operation almost without people. These include driverless trains, which bring the ore to the coast, and drilling robot, which mine the ore, which then automatically on the truck is loaded. These menschenlosen devices should be assigned by the mission office in Perth are controlled. As Rio Tinto pointed out, also the competitors of BPP Billiton and Fortescue metals group are working on similar concepts.

Increased need for highly qualified service personnel drives Huge Dump Trucks-Robots on Construction Site in Australia

For the use of the unmanned Dump Trucks-Robots, Rio Tinto has re-measured the mining equipment and mapped to optimize the plans for the use of the vehicles. Human driver can cope with small deviations in the routes without problems, autopilot must, however, be prepared for all eventualities. “We have in Perth a complete team focused solely on the far-reaching optimization”. Bennett said: “These include the technical maintenance of the system as well as the increase in productivity in the use of the vehicles.” Today each vehicle saves about 500 people hours according to Bennett’s year.

Huge Dump Trucks-Robots on Construction Site in Australia
Still, the most trucks in the mining sector are with drivers are on the road. However, the mining group “Rio Tinto” has now converted the first two mines on driverless operation.

At first glance, the transition of a mine to the driverless vehicle operation means laying off hundreds of workers. But in fact increases the need for maintenance staff and above all highly qualified employees at the same time. Dr. Carla Boehl, lecturer at the Australia Curtin University (mining), provides a special opportunity for the students at colleges of mining in this development. Now higher qualifications were asked by the staff.

Dump Trucks-Robots transport up to 360 tons

Half a dozen companies in the Western Australia with world particularly most heavy goods vehicles expose demand for particular for the ground-level mining. These vehicles can download up to 360 t ore on each ride and have the height of a three-storey house. Known producers of these vehicles include Komatsu from Japan, Caterpillar to the United States, and Liebherr from Germany.

Huge Dump Trucks-Robots on Construction Site in Australia
Since a few days, the mining group Rio Tinto in the two mines Yandicoogina and Nammuldi in Western of Australia has switched to the road to driverless operation. The huge dump trucks are controlled by the headquarters in Perth.