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Comment IIOT Chemical

Sandvik and IBM to partner on IIoT technologies for the mining industry

By Mary Page Bailey |

Sandvik Group (Stockholm, Sweden; www.home.sandvik.com) announced that IBM is collaborating with Sandvik Mining and Rock Technology to develop IIoT (Industrial Internet of Things), advanced analytics and artificial intelligence to realize safety, maintenance, productivity and operational efficiency in the mining industry.

The mining and rock excavation industry is under growing pressure to increase the global supply of minerals to meet the needs and expectations of a rapidly rising world population. This often requires extracting from increasing greater depths, which can make it difficult to communicate and act as necessary when equipment fails or needs to be serviced.

The OptiMine Analytics platform uses predictive insights and actionable dashboards embedded into operation management systems to transform data into useful process improvements. Using the analytics capabilities from IBM Watson IoT, this information management solution allows mining companies to combine equipment and application data from disparate sources in real-time, analyzing patterns in the data to help improve availability, utilization and performance.

Through a series of IBM Design Thinking workshops, IBM and Sandvik will work with clients to develop a framework to shape offerings around data driven productivity and predictive maintenance. Using the Watson IoT technology, Sandvik and IBM have jointly created a platform able to comply with the stringent reliability and security requirements of mining operations. Predictive maintenance technology leveraging IoT sensor data has also been introduced as part of this platform.

“Proactively identifying maintenance needs before something breaks is leading to huge cost and time savings,” said Patrick Murphy, president, Rock Drills & Technologies, Sandvik. “Our award-winning OptiMine Analytics with IBM Watson IoT solutions offer our customers a more complete view of their operations for smarter, safer and more productive work.”

“Our top priority is the safety of our employees and if a machine fails underground, we need immediate insight into what is happening in that tunnel,” said Luctor Roode, executive operations at Petra Diamonds. “With the solution from Sandvik and IBM, we have real-time data that allows us to immediately identify the root cause of the problem and act accordingly.” 

“Leveraging data is become increasingly valuable across the mining sector. Through analytics, machine learning and AI, we are seeing new possibilities for increased operational efficiency,” said Paul Muller, chief executive officer, Barminco. “Our partnership with Sandvik’s OptiMine® Analytics allows us to fast-track our efforts, leveraging Sandvik’s whole-of-fleet data and innate machine knowledge.”

OptiMine Analytics will also be used by Vedanta Zinc International’s Black Mountain Mining (BMM) operations in South Africa’s Northern Cape Province, to accelerate data-driven operations for safety, efficiency and productivity for trucks, loaders and drills. Additionally, Hindustan Zinc, one of the world’s largest integrated producers of zinc, lead and silver has tapped Sandvik to implement a major digital transformation at its Sindesar Khurd Mine, India, to ensure all required infrastructure and platforms can achieve world-class mining safety, efficiency and productivity.

“Sensors and tracking systems for asset management is only the beginning when it comes to how artificial intelligence will disrupt the mining industry,” said Jay Bellissimo, General Manager, Cognitive Process Transformation, IBM Global Business Services. “Creating a solution that turns the data into actionable insights is a delicate matter. It requires an interdisciplinary effort spanning across mining technology, software engineering and data science. IBM and Sandvik are now on course to help transform the mining value chain with the fusion of cognitive capabilities into miners business and operating processes.”

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