Produce a guideline outlining the current best practices for Short Interval Control (SIC) and Real-Time Control (RTC), presenting all options that can be considered in the rapidly changing technological landscape.
SIC and RTC are the processes that allow mining supervisors to better manage tasks throughout a single shift, enabling real-time feedback on completed and outstanding work. GMSG and the Canada Mining Innovation Council (CMIC) are partnering for the creation of the guideline, which will raise awareness of what is currently available to mine owners and operators.
The intent is to provide a roadmap outlining possible paths from an “analog” mine to short interval control to real-time control, providing a tool that companies can use to find where they are currently, identify where they want to get to, and see the options available to them to get there, while avoiding common pitfalls. It may also provide an introduction to newer technologies that are currently being introduced to underground mining, either through development or importation from other industries.
Current project objectives are:
- Create a table of contents to divide guideline work into sections.
- Hold regular meetings with participants via online conference calls.
- Plan in-person workshops in Australia, South America and North America for increased engagement.
There is a strong desire for increased control and automation in underground mining. Thanks to technological advances, communication infrastructure has vastly improved in underground environments, allowing better opportunities to adopt shift management processes. Many companies have implemented some aspects of SIC and RTC, and others are looking at doing so, but there is a lack of independent guidance on how to proceed.
A best practices guideline will deliver much-needed direction on the available options for interval control, allowing for:
- Greater and faster adoption of control technologies.
- Lower cost implementation.
- Fewer companies encountering problems with the technologies, resulting in fewer companies abandoning the technologies due to poor implementation.