Canada’s largest surface-strip coal mine adopts Argus System

Sunhills Mining, operators of one of Canada’s largest surface-strip coal mines, have experienced measurable increases in productivity performance and payload compliance as well as significant reductions in machine stress and operational costs as a result of adopting MineWare’s Argus system.

The Challenge

The Challenge

Highvale mine operates four draglines, two electric and four hydraulic shovels with a mixed fleet of 25 haul trucks and various support equipment. The team at Sunhills Mining recognised that irregular truck loading was resulting in a number of costly impacts such as truck bunching leading to material spillage, significant road damage, premature tyre failure and higher fuel costs.

Contracting MineWare’s support, Sunhills Mining sought to boost productivity, better utilise their equipment and accurately track performance metrics for continuous improvement.

THE SOLUTION

THE SOLUTION

MineWare’s Argus Shovel Monitoring system offers a fully integrated solution for trucks/shovel optimisation, truck payload compliance and machine health. With truck hauling being the largest operating cost in most mining operations, modest improvements to the truck/shovel fleet can lead to substantial savings in lower operating costs.

By implementing the Argus system, Sunhills Mining were able to capitalise on high precision shovel and bucket location reporting, leading to decreased operational costs and increased productivity. This approach to monitoring shovel loading enabled a payload accuracy of 3% compared to other truck-side payload methods that are typically only accurate to 10-15%.

THE RESULTS

Argus increased the number of compliant trucks while decreasing the severity of underloads and frequency of major overloads resulting in:

19%
Reduction
in underloads: from 31% to 12% of total loads
20%
Increase
in compliant trucks: From 55% to 75% of total loads
2.4x
Reduction
in major over-load frequency: From 2.28% to 0.85%
Shovel Productivity by Pass

Shovel Productivity by Pass

Loading cycles were independently analysed to better understand the source of productivity improvements. The trends of the different shovel passes were then monitored month-by-month.

Operator Performance

Operator Performance

Analysing the effect of Argus on the different operators can help predict how effectively Argus can be adopted by different mine sites and work cultures. The benchmark compares the most productive and least productive operators to an overall average of the machine.

Machine Stress

Machine Stress

Argus is also capable of reporting a cycle-by-cycle stress factor that indicates how smooth or rough operators handle the shovel. The results demonstrate that the stress on the machine can be reduced, even while improving productivity.

The outcome

The outcome

In a short six months, the Highvale mine demonstrated great success using MineWare’s Argus shovel monitoring system by:

  • Increasing the effectiveness of its truck fleet
  • Decreasing stress per unit produced
  • Increasing overall productivity

 

The team is now looking into future plans to integrate MineWare’s systems into their wider operations

Argus has provided Highvale with an excellent tool to improve productivity and efficiency in today’s challenging global mining climate.

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