Just like any other industry, the mining industry too plays a crucial role in the growth and development of the national and global economy by creating new job opportunities and developing the infrastructure. The recent introduction of innovative technologies in the mining sector has further improved its productivity and efficiency in reducing production costs and turning economically unsuccessful mining projects into great success. International investors who are looking for long-term and profitable investment opportunities are now turning towards investing in the mining industry after considering its global economic growth and infrastructure development. However, mining industries are facing unspeakable pressure to improve their operating efficiencies, implement safer operations, and minimize costs. By deploying the right technologies and innovation, the mining industry can transform its key aspects to deliver the best services to its stakeholders and customers along with delivering environmental value. Here are a few innovative technologies that can transform the mining industry completely.
Innovative technologies that can transform the Mining Industry
3D Mapping: 3D mapping is one of the most effective tools that can be used in the mining industry to improve productivity. With the help of 3D mapping, mining industries can enhance their mineral recovery by locating the most suitable area for mineral excavation. This will help the mining industry in both reducing the time and operational costs without compromising the quality of performance. 3D images can be used in capturing the mining environment and topography to analyse the data and make plans to determine the target of drill holes and extract high-quality ore in as less time as possible.
Drones: Extraction of high-quality ore can be time-consuming due to proper survey and mapping of mining environments. The introduction of drones can save the mining industry invaluable time by conducting aerial surveys of the mining sites. Drones can relay geophysical imagery and important information & data to the surveyors to maintain accuracy, save time, make better decisions, and improve operational efficiency. Drones not only will help the surveyors save time spent on on-site inspection but also enable safer operations and execution. Surveyors can also use drones to span the visual inspection of the site and the equipment to identify the maintenance required, real-time monitoring of the ore bodies, surveying and mapping the data, and some of the other operator-free activities allowing the surveyors to make better-informed decisions and manage risks.
Digital Twinning: Digital twinning is a technology that can create digital representations of any physical body or object offering or highlighting crucial information regarding the object. The use of digital twinning in the mining industry can help surveyors to be updated in real-time by creating a digitalized version of the physical equipment and using sensors and tags on it. This will gather the data related to the health and maintenance of the physical equipment and help the surveyors in predicting potential outrages even before they take place thereby saving the surveyors to reduce the risk of downtime.
Simulations Modelling: It is a method that mining companies use to analyse the plans and processes in a virtual setting. The model is used to determine all the ‘What-if” scenarios that will reduce both the time and cost of physical testing thereby impacting the project’s operational performance. This will help the mining companies to highlight their performance level, measure their improvements, and identify opportunities. In short, the implementation of the simulation modelling in the mining industry can help in understanding the key drivers and ore bodies better and determine suitable operational plans helping the firm to meet production goals at the lowest cost possible.
Why are innovation and technology important for the Mining Industry?
Innovation and technology are the keys to the transformation of the mining industry that will change the way miners operate. Even though innovations in the mining industry are in varying levels of maturity, miners that have adopted innovations before the rest have seen to be achieving success in terms of productivity, cost, and safety measures. Therefore, the reason that some miners are at the top of the competition is that they have adopted advanced technologies and innovations to level up their productivity and performance. There are numerous reasons why innovation and technology are crucial for the growth and success of the mining industry. For example, automation technology can help the mining industry to improve its productivity and keep costs low. The increase in the population, globalization and high demand have created challenges for the mining industry especially when the deposits are becoming more and more remote and difficult to reach. Mining companies now have to work in environments they have never been in before and thus are adopting new and innovative ways to operate. The techniques that the miners used yesterday are no more applicable to meet tomorrow’s demand. Adopting the right and suitable technologies and innovations can allow the mining industry to work smartly and safely, improve its performance in different aspects of mining, measure its performance and growth, minimize operational and other costs, meet the goals & targets, improve the infrastructure, and save precious time.