Schneider Electric delivers streamlined digital solution for Roy Hill

Schneider Electric, the leader in digital transformation of energy management and automation, has announced success achieved at Roy Hill, an independent iron ore operation in Western Australia. Roy Hill implemented a Schneider Electric Mining industry software solution to consolidate end-to-end operational visibility and optimise their mining value chain.

Roy Hill built a greenfield iron ore mine and mine process plant in the Pilbara region, a heavy haul railway system from mine-to-port, new port facilities in Port Hedland, and a Remote Operations Center (ROC) in Perth. Each of these infrastructure components were designed to meet its capacity of 55 Mt/y of iron ore.

“As a ground up development, Roy Hill had the ability to recruit their own people, establish their own culture, and define their own operating model with a focus on their own vision. What has resulted is an organisation free of bureaucracy where efficiency is readily possible through streamlined processes that can drive high performance, fit for purpose outcomes,” said Doug Warren, Vice President, Software, Industry Solutions at Schneider Electric.

Most leading mining companies have historically evolved with organisational silos, usually between mines, processing facilities and logistics. In the age of increasing automation, data, and digitalisation, these silos often prevent end-to-end visibility and optimization opportunities to realize resource to market potential. Through its efforts, as no small accomplishment, Roy Hill has been able to avoid these pitfalls with the help of its ecosystem partners, including Schneider Electric.

“Schneider Electric was selected as a vendor for its compelling mining industry offerings, industry experience and consultative approach. Mine and port operations include Schneider Electric’s electrical switchgear and distribution, variable frequency drives, critical power systems (UPS) and power monitoring systems.”

In addition, Roy Hill implemented Schneider Electric’s industrial software offering tailored for the mining industry, which included the following specific solutions:

  • Demand Chain Planning and Scheduling (DCPS)
  • Inventory Tracking and Quality Management (ITQM)
  • Delay Accounting (DA)
  • Capacity Simulation Model (Pre-CAPEX Analysis)

The DCPS solution allows for optimisation of Roy Hill’s end-to-end demand chain from the pit to the port across different time horizons, from long term planning down to weekly scheduling. This full visibility is then linked into real-time inventory and quality information through its ITQM solution to close the loop between actuals and the schedule (conformance to schedule), and between actuals and the plan (conformance to plan).

DA provides key financial insights into production slowdowns and outages. While this may seem rudimentary compared to a typical manufacturing scenario, it is very rare in the mining industry to see these results on a shift by shift basis, as it is often only reconciled monthly. Roy Hill is using this digital process to drive better decisions on a timely basis – a vision that was completely synchronised before the first shovel went into the ground.

All of these processes and technologies are brought together in Roy Hill’s state-of-the-art ROC in Perth. In one room, all aspects of Roy Hill’s operations, from real-time execution to scheduling to planning, and everything from the mine to the processing plant to rail and port are being monitored and controlled, at a location that is 1,300 km away from the mine site. With all of this expertise in the same room, Roy Hill can dramatically improve opportunities to collaborate, de-risk decisions and place greater focus on business improvements, all with a view of their entire business.

Schneider Electric has worked closely with Roy Hill to help drive significant achievements so far, and continues to work arm-in-arm to further their digital transformation and innovation strategies within the mining industry.