Komatsu plans to accelerate the pace of mining automation

Komatsu is planning to enhance its Autonomous Haulage System’s (AHS’s) mixed-operations function that is said to enable manned haul trucks of any make to safely interoperate with the company’s AHS trucks in a blended fleet operation. It is aimed at providing mining clients with AHS solutions that meet the growing demand for transition to a fully automated mine.

AHS recorded a cumulative total of 1.5 billion tons of hauled material by the end of last year and is said to reduce load and haul unit costs by more than 15%, compared to conventional haulage methods. Additionally, its optimized automatic controls are designed with the intention of reducing sudden acceleration and abrupt steering and are designed with the intention of improving tire life by 40% compared to conventional operations. It also aims to reduce environmental impact.

In September 2017, Komatsu completed trials of its AHS retrofit kit at Rio Tinto’s existing mine to extend benefits to operations with manned haul fleets. The kit, mounted on a Komatsu electric drive standard truck 830E (nominal payload: 220 tons), enabled the truck to operate in autonomous mode.

Tetsuji Ohashi, president and CEO, announced that the company is now celebrating the tenth anniversary AHS’ commercial deployment on the 29 January 2018.

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