Can Cloud Computing Improve Mining Fleet Efficiency?
The PoC project, which will be facilitated by Teck, combines Hitachi’s cloud service and Wenco’s fleet management system with Teck’s mining operation team. The results of the project will be evaluated for approximately 40 days after its launch on Jan. 20.
Wenco’s fleet management system will be installed at Hitachi’s data center in North America, and will provide cloud-based FMS service to Teck via the internet. Teck will support the project and provide feedback on the performance and efficiency of the system within one of its facilities located in British Columbia, Canada.
Using on-board computers, the Wenco system is installed on dump trucks, excavators and additional equipment. It displays mine-specific instructions for the operators that help increase efficiencies at a mine site. Currently, the system is individually maintained and operated on each mine site, but the cloud-based fleet management system service utilized in the PoC project will demonstrate the ability for mines with multiple sites to manage their mine sites from one facility.
The goal of the project is to reduce the initial start-up and operating costs of the fleet management system in small-scale mining.
After analyzing and evaluating the results of the project, Hitachi says it will advance the development of an Intelligent Operations for Mining system as a part of its Intelligent Operations portfolio.
As cloud computing ramps up, it will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 95 percent, leading to savings of more than $2.2 billion, according to a study by Microsoft Europe and the Global e-Sustainability Initiative, published in June 2013.
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