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Enhancing the mine of the future with cellular networks

Enhancing the mine of the future with cellular networks

Epiroc, Ericsson and the mine of the future

Ericsson and Epiroc share a strong, long-term commitment to helping mining companies automate and digitalize their operations. Close collaboration between the two companies has led to the development of a robust and reliable cellular-based communication concept for the mining industry.


Executive summary

Learn how Ericsson and Epiroc are collaborating to boost mine safety and productivity, and making it easy for mine operators to use private cellular technologies for wireless telematics data, digitalization, and automation applications in mines. The enablers are automation based on connecting sites in a standardized architecture and make mining products, services and solutions safer, smarter and more efficient.

Executive summary: enhancing the mine of the future with cellular networks

Image: Courtesy of Epiroc


Ericsson and Epiroc have established a long-term global partnership to helping mining companies automate and digitalize their operations based on Private 4G and 5G solutions. The companies have and continue to work together on joint research and innovation in a variety of partner projects, but also the productification of Epiroc’s cellular-based solution development and model testing which is based on Ericsson Private 5G.

Together, the companies help mines define 4G/5G architectures for mine deployments, enabling the automation and digitalization goals envisioned.

Highlights about Ericsson and Epiroc partnership

Image: Courtesy of Epiroc


  • Evolving connectivity networks throughout the dynamic lifetime of the mine must be easy and flexible
  • Ensuring worker safety and productivity based on continuous availability and optimal network performance
  • High bandwidth and low latency requirements for automation use cases
  • Avoid network complexity without compromising control, which is vital for autonomous machine communications
Challenges about working in mining

Image: Courtesy of Epiroc


  • Autonomous applications requiring deterministic and low latency connectivity enabled by Ericsson Private 5G.
  • Bandwidth suitable for increased use of telematics.
  • Ericsson Private 5G offers dual mode 4G/LTE and 5G Stand Alone core and radio access networks solutions to expand in terms of coverage area, amount of simultaneous connected devices, and an evolution path throughout the whole deployment lifecycle
Use cases found along the mining process that benefit from cellular connectivity

Use cases found along the mining process that benefit from cellular connectivity


  • Productivity and worker safety through MC-PTT/V, video monitoring and digital PPE 
  • Low-latency communications enable remote blast control, tele remote controlled and autonomous LHD vehicles, robots and drones
  • Smooth and easy rollout of digital infrastructure results in cost-effective networks
  • Output power of LTE/5G signals enable easier coverage into caving, room-and-pillar and ling-wall mining methods
  • Less fiber backhaul, lower power consumption and lower probability of network outages
  • Cellular coverage, capacity and functionality can grow with the needs of the mine, so that the fully digital and autonomous mine is deployed gradually over time
  • 3GPP standardization ensures future-ready connectivity that can be consumed across the globe
Simba Automation from Epiroc

Image: Courtesy of Epiroc

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After being slow to adapt in the past, the mining industry is now heading rapidly towards modernization, with smart mining operations projected to increase threefold until 2025. And it’s private cellular networks that are supplying the connectivity to create safer, more productive, and more sustainable mining operations.