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Cellular connectivity driving productivity and safety for mining operations

Mining

As mining operations dig deeper into the earth, industry digitalization increases productivity by connecting more assets, automating more processes and analyzing more data. Industry digitalization will also increase asset security and safety for personnel working in dangerous and extreme conditions.

Priorities in mining

 

Growing profit margins within mining necessitates a focus on optimization in three key areas:

  • Productivity: This includes better fleet management and machinery utilization, wide area communications, introduction of autonomous vehicles, real-time location of assets, preventative and predictive maintenance, access to real-time data and analytics, and drones for exploration.
  • Safety: With many moving parts operating in harsh and often dangerous conditions, proximity and collision detection are critical, along with the ability to monitor environmental factors like air and water quality.
  • Sustainability: Leading mining companies increasingly want to work more proactively while limiting the environmental impact of their operations. Requirements are increasing and along with the interest in getting more attractive workplaces to attract talent.

Automation is viewed as the next advancement that will improve returns on investment.

Paramount for automation is better connectivity within the mines. Current wireless solutions such as Bluetooth and Wi-Fi do not meet the evolving demands for seamless connectivity required for automated vehicles, advanced robotics and machinery.

The emergence of high performance 3GPP connectivity and applications as the critical foundation for technical innovation creates an enormous business opportunity for communications service providers (CSPs) to provide a variety of new service offerings beyond just connectivity.

Future-Proof connectivity

Existing services operating on legacy technology systems will migrate to a single cellular platform, enabling efficient management of current and future services.

Secure connectivity

Provides an additional layer of secure transmission and strict verification of assets and data to the already highly secured 3GPP connectivity, thus minimizing possibility of IoT cyber threats.

Reliable connectivity

Mission and business-critical use cases require low latency, high performance and high reliability that only 5G provides.

Discover Ericsson’s wireless cellular solutions for mining

Mining operations implementing industry digitalization need fast, reliable, secure wireless connectivity solutions. Ericsson’s wireless connectivity solutions enable CSPs to offer secure and reliable coverage, support high device density, low latency, and full visibility of assets, processes and data.

The role of automation in the mining industry will uncover the business value of 4G/LTE and 5G technology, in terms of both economics and sustainability.

Automation in mining

The Boliden Aitik mine use case study discovered that automation have significant impacts in cost reduction, being 5G communications the key enabler. Carrying out drilling and blasting using automation shows an annual EUR 2.5 million net savings for the Aitik mine alone.

Learn how Boliden is leveraging 5G to automate their mines, including Altik

Making rock bolts smarter

Rock bolts are “mission critical” equipment. If one in a tunnel fails, a cave-in could result, leading to a loss in production and equipment. Or worse, human lives.

Read how connected, smarter rock bolts, can create safer mining environments

Drilling down with autonomous vehicles

Maximum productivity comes from running equipment constantly. Autonomous vehicles are the future of mining, boosting both throughput and safety.

Learn how autonomous mining vehicles increase production

Key partners

Epiroc

Key advantages of 4G/LTE and 5G solutions compared to other wireless solutions include better coverage, higher reliability and stronger security, especially when machines are in the same area and share information. Epiroc and Ericsson are helping mining companies to digitalize and automate their operations to increase productivity, enhance operator safety and lower cost.

Learn more about how Epiroc is enabling better mining operations

Ambra

Ambra selected Ericsson as a radio partner of choice to provide 5G-ready network solutions to automate ventilation systems, real-time personnel and vehicle tracking, and remote control of mining machinery and equipment.

Read more about this partnership and how cellular will power better mining

Solution

Ericsson’s IoT Accelerator and Private Networks are adaptable to each type of mine and work seamlessly both above and below the ground. Ericsson Private Networks solution includes Enterprise Core, which is compatible with indoor and outdoor radio products to flexibly achieve optimal coverage and capacity.

Additional offerings include remote control services for a variety of machines, telematic systems, mission critical push-to-talk, positioning, IoT-safety devices and IoT environment sensors.

IoT Accelerator

As an easy-to-use global IoT connectivity and device management platform, Ericsson IoT Accelerator simplifies complex connectivity and device management challenges for mining companies. It is built to connect and manage billions of devices and millions of applications efficiently, seamlessly and globally.

Learn more about how Ericsson IoT Accelerator can help create new revenue streams and business opportunities

Ericsson Private Networks

Ericsson private LTE and 5G networks solution allows mining companies to leverage service providers’ existing network assets and operations – without compromising required local control.

Learn how service providers can expand their revenue streams with mission critical private networks

Find out more information about what Ericsson is doing in other industry sectors at the industry 4.0 site