Rapid innovation: A look at five innovative mining technologies
- May 11, 2016
- Posted by: Admin
- Category: Systems
The process of extracting metals and minerals from beneath the surface of the Earth is one that's evolved substantially over the past century. A modern coal mine in Australia will be near-unrecognisable from a mine at the turn of the 19th century.
A major contributor to this continued evolution is the technologies powering these mines. From powerful conveying solutions through to driverless trucks, new technology is allowing mining to become safer, more efficient and, as a result, more profitable.
Here are five of the most innovative technologies in the mining sector.
1) FLUXRITE – Belt demagnetisation
A technology designed to reduce the issues associated with the random charges that disrupt processes, belt demagnetisation helps mining operators to exercise stronger quality control.
FLUXRITE eliminates strong pockets of magnetism in the splices of steel cord conveyor belts using a solution that's placed underneath the belt. Once it's operational, the system will first normalise and then attenuate the magnetic flux. The result? The elimination of false tramp metal detection that can so often cause operational issues for mines.
Mining vehicles are often some of the most impressive pieces of equipment used in the industrial sector today,
2) Sandvik – DT912D tunnelling jumbo
Mining vehicles are often some of the most impressive pieces of equipment used in the industrial sector today, and they continue to become more advanced. The latest tunnelling jumbo from Sandvik, the DT912D, uses a 205kW diesel-hydraulic engine,a four cubic metre compressor and a 1000 litre water tank to carry out air-mist flushing.
It's a machine designed for multifaceted operations and highly accurate drilling. It's also versatile, being able to carry out crosscutting, bolt-hole drilling and extension drilling operations.
Machines like the DT912D will continue to prove essential tools in the mining sector, allowing operators to more safely and efficiently carry out drilling operations underground.
3) Driverless trucks
Beyond the physical mines, new technologies are also enabling improvement and optimisation outside the mine shaft. Driverless trucks can now ferry material from the location of the mine directly to the processing facility. According to ABC Australia, the first two mines in the world are moving all of their iron ore in this way in the Pilbara in Western Australia.
Rio Tinto has workers driving the trucks remotely from the Yandicoogina and Nammuldi mines right through to Perth, 1200 kilometres away.
There's no denying the importance of accurate material readings in mining.
"What we have done is map out our entire mine and put that into a system and the system then works out how to manoeuvre the trucks through the mine," says manager Josh Bennett.
"We have taken away a very high-risk role, where employees are exposed to fatigue."
4) Custom feeders
There's no denying the importance of accurate material readings in mining – operators need to know if they're meeting quantity targets. These are essentially a method of quality assurance: they track material quantities in order to ensure operations are running smoothly.
Weigh belt feeders are able to deliver this required accuracy, but the innovation comes from custom solutions. SRO Technology offers such systems, being able to design and then install custom weigh belt feeder solutions depending on the needs of a particular mining business.
5) Atlas Copco – Simba 7 production drill
Like the DT912D, the Simba 7 is a powerful drill that's designed to operate in the tough modern mining environment. It's also extremely manoeuvrable in small to medium drifts – another key facet of a modern drilling vehicle. Placing safety at the top of the priority list, this vehicle has a FOPS and ROPS-approved cabin along with automatic drill stoppage.
Reach out to SRO Technology
If you'd like to learn more about innovative new technologies for the mining, agricultural and quarry sectors, get in touch with SRO Technology today. Capable solutions are now available and can seriously improve operations.