Minimized Truck Queuing and Shovel Hang Time

Excessive haul truck queuing at loading and dumping areas results in lower productivity and higher fuel consumption. Conversely, every minute a shovel is not loading trucks is wasted time and money. The DISPATCH system provides industry-proven optimization of truck assignments in real-time, minimizing both truck queuing and shovel hang time.

The DISPATCH Optimization module takes a road network and Best Path (BP) programming model and uses the Haulage Tracking module to determine the productivity of material sources (such as shovels and loaders) and material sinks (dumps and crushers). This determination is based on several factors, such as: material available at sources, dumping capacity of material sinks, and travel times between.

The system applies a Linear Programming (LP) algorithm to determine the maximum possible flow rate between the material sources and sinks. It also takes into account the haulage fleet's operating characteristics, such as: equipment size, shovel-to-truck matching, and region/shovel locks. Based on these factors, the optimal material flow rates are calculated. A Dynamic Programming (DP) algorithm is then used to match available haulage resources to the optimal material flows.

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Ore Quality Control

Incorrect head feed grade can result in decreased recovery and efficiency or even damage to plant equipment. For customers with strict feed grade requirements, the DISPATCH system maximizes production while honoring material blend constraints.

The Grade Tracking module enables you to individually track ore quality for every location and material type. The information gathered allows for a very fine-grained measurement of plant head-grade, and it serves as the basis for the DISPATCH blending algorithm.

The DISPATCH Blending module automates the blending process at crushers and stockpiles, providing your mine with precision ore quality control. The module optimizes ore haul truck assignments subject to blending constraints, and it respects blend targets despite unplanned shovel interruptions. In some cases, several different material characteristics must be kept within prescribed limits in order to satisfy mill or customer requirements. The Blending module handles all of these factors to ensure that your mine quality plan is achieved.

Improved Fuel Efficiency

A truck running out of fuel is highly disruptive to any mine, while unnecessary refueling reduces equipment utilization and productivity. The DISPATCH Fueling module enables manual recording of the fuel and fluids that are added to trucks, shovels, and auxiliary equipment. When truck fuel levels meet preconfigured limits, trucks are automatically assigned for refueling. A snapshot of current fuel levels helps the dispatcher carry out necessary refueling activities while minimizing lost production.

Inefficient shift changes keep equipment out of service and sacrifice productivity. By assigning equipment to park-up locations at the optimum time, and tracking the location of all equipment during shift change, the DISPATCH Shiftchange module improves equipment utilization and minimizes the impact of scheduled crew changes. Depending on the site and the production scenario on a given day, the optimum assignment of operators to park-up depends on many different factors. The Shiftchange module enables effective and timely decision-making of park-up assignments to maximize production.

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Proactive Management and Scheduling

When steps in a mining process occur out of order, operational delays can quickly pile up. The DISPATCH system proactively manages and schedules equipment and personnel, allowing multi-stage operations to run efficiently.

The Lineup Management module automatically assigns qualified personnel to equipment before the start of a shift, displaying assignments to equipment operators via a scrolling lineup screen. You can configure the roster and maintain the current qualifications for each employee. Default qualification types include: Unqualified, Trainee, Qualified, and Experienced. It's possible to allocate operators to equipment prior to shift changes, based on either their permanent assignment or equipment qualification.

Additionally, unnecessary travel results in wasted fuel and time while causing needless wear and tear on equipment. By calculating the best path between start and end points, and issuing alarms when operators take an incorrect route, the DISPATCH system ensures that your fleet is travelling as efficiently as possible.

Improved Resource Management

Sending ore to a waste dump is literally throwing money away. On the other hand, when waste is dumped in a crusher, it can cause costly downtime and disrupt blend quality. The ProVision machine guidance system continuously matches mined material grade with assigned dumping locations.

ProVision integrates with existing mine planning software, providing operators with real-time updates to ore boundaries for improved resource management. All ProVision solutions integrate seamlessly with the DISPATCH system to issue warning alarms for a potential misdirection.

Consistent Bench Grades

Uneven benches require substantial auxiliary equipment rework to avoid damage to haulage equipment. The ProVision Shovel system provides a real-time indicator of ore boundaries and shovel elevation against plan. Operators receive immediate warnings when the elevation is above or below the desired value set by the mine planning team, or when their material selection does not match the plan.

Improved bench accuracy results in decreased spotting time, due to a more level loading area. More consistent bench grades also reduce drilling time for subsequent benches, and increase shovel productivity through an overall reduction in bench maintenance.

Blast design must be specific to material hardness to avoid waste of explosives and improper fragmentation. The ProVision Stratification module profiles material by hole, enabling optimized blast design. Real-time machine guidance ensures that operators drill according to plan.

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