May 26, 2020
Most mines sites are their own ecosystems. Located in remote, rugged locations, they have to run 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to meet world demand. To them, autonomy is not a trendy technology. It’s about safety, considering every movement, reducing waste and making their work more repeatable, much like a factory.
That’s where Caterpillar comes in. We’re proud to be the global leader in providing solutions to help our mining customers build a better world.
With the world’s largest autonomous fleet of haul trucks, our equipment leads the industry in mining automation. And, we recently hit another a significant milestone in autonomous haulage using Cat® MineStar™ Command for hauling.
“In just over six years we’ve safely hauled 2 billion tonnes – a milestone we achieved significantly faster than our competitors,”
said Sean McGinnis, MineStar Solutions product manager. “We’re launching Command on more sites and implementing it more quickly, so more of our customers can experience the safety and productivity gains that autonomous hauling delivers.”
A Secret to Success
The secret to success? Input from our customers. We listen to and partner with our customers. With their input, we can identify features, functionality and even the autonomous truck models needed for their operations.
“Command for hauling has proven its value to mining customers,” said McGinnis. “That value is reflected in the rate at which the Cat autonomous fleet achieved this milestone. The fleet is growing quickly, and production continues to climb as mining companies benefit from greater truck productivity, increased truck utilization, consistent truck operation and reduced costs.”
Growing Our Expertise
The Caterpillar autonomous fleet is made up of Cat 789D, 793D, 793F and 797F trucks, as well as a fleet of Komatsu 930Es. The Cat 794 AC electric-drive autonomous truck will be ready for autonomous haulage later this year. Command equipped trucks have driven over 72.4 million kilometers without a lost-time injury.
MineStar Solutions has also continued to grow its expertise in autonomous operations – not only in hauling but also with autonomous dozers, drills and underground loaders.
“The skills and knowledge of our MineStar team are unmatched in the industry,” said John Deselem, global autonomy operations manager. “Beyond getting better at implementing the system, we’ve become trusted advisors for mine sites looking to take advantage of what autonomy makes possible. We listen to their needs, then work together to build the ideal solution for their mine.”
“To date, Caterpillar has 282 autonomous trucks in operation – and counting. The push toward autonomous mining is exciting and a journey we are proud to be a part of,” said McGinnis.