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Deep underground mining: LKAB, ABB, Epiroc, Combitech and Sandvik collaboration

ABB collaborates to set new world standard for deep underground mining: carbon-dioxide-free, digitalized and autonomous.

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In the future autonomous and digitalized mine people and machines will work side by side

The mine of the future is carbon-dioxide-free, digitalized and autonomous. To set a new world standard for sustainable mining at great depth, LKAB, ABB, Epiroc, Combitech and Sundvik have joined forces in a partnership and are starting a unique testbed in the orefields of northern Sweden.

Within the framework of the testbed the best means of building an efficient autonomous production system that is carbon-dioxide-free and has the highest conceivable level of safety will be studied.

"We're proud of this collaboration between companies in SUM. ABB supplies products that assist in the electrification of Epiroc's powertrain with motors and drive systems, as well as charging infrastructure for electric vehicles," said Björn Jonsson, head of industrial automation division Sweden, ABB.

“We are working together to find new methods and smarter solutions for the sustainable mining of the future. With our knowledge of automation and electrification of underground mines, we are contributing to immediate measures to fight climate change,” said Björn Jonsson at the UN summit in Madrid, COP25, during a panel debate on Sustainable Underground Mining.

Test bed project: Sustainable Underground Mining

The test bed project is called SUM (Sustainable Underground Mining) and will be located in LKAB’s underground mines in Kiruna and Malmberget, Sweden, as well as in a virtual mine.

ABB will contribute to this project with solutions for underground electrification and an integrated automation platform and operations management system that connects workforce and equipment in real time to perform predictive production scheduling, automated execution and react to disturbance in seconds. 

The SUM project will lay the foundation for decisions to be made into the mid-2020s for one of Sweden’s largest ever industrial investments. SUM project has received financial support from the Swedish Energy Agency. After 2030, LKAB will be ready to break into deeper ironstone in the Kiruna and Malmberget mines.
Johan Söderström, Managing Director, ABB Sweden
“Digitalization offers enormous opportunities. Together with our partners, we are creating tomorrow’s efficient and safe mines that will continue to strengthen Sweden’s competitiveness.”

The future of mining industry

ABB offerings for underground mining

Examples of collaboration with LKAB

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