In another example, a mining company first moved the trucks dispatcher into an IROC and hired analysts to support the dispatcher and find opportunities for improvement. Then, together, we investigated ways to automate some of the insights delivered by those analysts (production not going in the direction it should in terms of recovery, the cycle time going up – trucks are taking longer to reach the crusher, etc.). This helps determine the infrastructure required to receive the data.
A step further is to look beyond the process, e.g. start monitoring the information about the environment, safety, contractors violating speed limits and other areas. We are already building the Edge/Cloud infrastructure supporting such approach for GoldFields greenfield operations. It means constructing a comprehensive data lake that consolidates information from diverse sources, bringing real-time analytics to visualize trends, detect signals and automate various KPIs.
As I could see though my personal engagement in five mining IROCs (ArcelorMittal, Teck QB2, AngloAmerca Escondida, Antofagasta Los Pelambres and GoldFields Salares Norte), collaborating with a diverse ecosystem of partners enriches the quality of insights and many other aspects of managing remote environments. E.g. At the early stages of IROC design using ABB’s control room solutions it brings a lot of value to also involve ergonomics experts, focusing on human factors such as optimum seating distance, information presentation, task simplification, noise and light optimization. This increases the number of systems a single operator can manage, improving situational awareness and hand-over, reducing risky situations associated with telepresence, change blindness, workload, etc.