Leveraging the powerful telemetry and data acquisition capability of its mining equipment, Sandvik Mining & Rock Solutions is rolling out its Remote Monitoring Service – which analyses data to optimise valuable uptime.
By translating vast amounts of data from underground mining equipment into actionable recommendations, Remote Monitoring Service can also reduce the cost per hour of production equipment, lengthen its lifespan and improve operator safety.
According to Imraan Amod, business line manager services responsible for Southern African at Sandvik Mining & Rock Solutions, the innovative system effectively merges telemetry data from the equipment fleet with Sandvik’s digital and OEM technical expertise.
“This includes a global pool of reference data and in-depth analytical skills, which combine to produce actionable recommendations for continuous improvement of mining operations,” says Amod “We know our equipment through and through, so we are uniquely positioned to maximise its productivity wherever our data analysis presents an opportunity.”
Sandvik data scientists continuously monitor and analyse the data points acquired from customers’ production equipment. They identify root causes for abnormalities and develop predictive solutions to increase the mean time between failures.
By monitoring and analysing machine data and operator behaviour, Remote Monitoring Service can answer important technical questions to help streamline operations. For instance, it gives insight into why one operator consistently achieves better productivity than another, or why a specific loader suffers from unplanned downtime more often.
“An example of what Remote Monitoring Service offers is to avoid improper gear selection, which can easily damage power train components,” he says. “It can identify incorrect gear selection when driving uphill and downhill, utilising algorithms tailored to the conditions at the customer’s mine.”
Another scenario is premature engine failure; Remote Monitoring Service uses a neural network to observe operational signals from the engine. This determines the possible defect before it leads to power loss and engine breakdown.
“This is an attractive value proposition for mine owners and mining contractors, as it allows mean time between failures to be targeted and improved,” he says.
In addition to technical improvements, there is also the bigger picture of stakeholder expectations. Emerging social investors and other stakeholders today expect results and transparency around decarbonisation and sustainability, not just financial performance. Remote Monitoring Service can identify opportunities for reduced fuel consumption – and hence less climate emissions – so that mines can focus their operator training accordingly.
The service is primarily designed for underground mining, suitable for both large and small operations as well as all types of underground production equipment. Remote Monitoring Service does not require customers to invest heavily in IT infrastructure or associated resources. Rather, the service provides a high return on the initial investment along with short lead times and low risks.