Tag Archives: RCT

RCT introduces new ‘smart’ solution for fleet service monitoring

RCT has brought a new product to its Muirhead® range of protection solutions designed to protect both machines and operators in mining.

Easily installed, the Smart Service Monitor takes the traditionally basic device, which previously only gave an estimate on when a machine requires a service, and delivers an all-round information system for up to eight inputs, RCT says.

RCT’s Mining and Resources Product Manager, Mick Tanner, said: “This allows the monitoring of up to eight measurable components. Having the information allows for companies to schedule servicing of different components of a machine when it’s due.”

He added: “Information is power and having accurate information, delivered in an easy and concise manner allows management to ensure machines and their individual components are serviced correctly, therefore significantly increasing machine availability and extending the lifespan of equipment.”

The Smart Service Monitor was developed by RCT in response to industry demand, according to Tanner.

“Clients wanted more specific information about their machines and components in order to streamline efficiencies,” he said. “Having all the machines operating at optimal performance ensures this is achieved.

“This solution is all about minimising the costs associated with machine running costs and maximising the utilisation of machines.”

For example, it is possible for the monitor to intelligently log engine run hours; by monitoring the RPM, the device can monitor the time in idle and the time in a work state off the same input. The counter has been designed to count, up or down, depending on what is required.

By logging such an integral piece of information, it is possible to ensure machine servicing is carried out regularly when required to ensure optimal performance, according to RCT. This is not only a legal obligation to reduce any risks because of unexpected failures, but it also prevents machines running at a lower efficiency.

The Smart Service Monitor is designed to monitor the work hours of equipment to alert the user if the equipment requires or is overdue for a service. In addition, it is also capable of sending out both visual and audio alarms to alert the operators.

“The most impressive aspect is that the system can monitor up to 10 different things at once, which allows the end user to have a great overall picture of a machine’s health and be assured operations are running optimally,” Tanner said.

All that is required to monitor a machine component via the Smart Service Monitor is either a frequency input, PWM input or just a straight digital or analogue voltage.

In addition, the Smart Service Monitor is complementary to RCT’s automation solutions. The Smart Service Monitor can record the operating hours of these solutions to ensure servicing can be carried out at appropriate times to maintain optimal efficiency.

RCT’s Smart Service Monitor can be positioned on any machine, with the device configured through an in-built programming tool. All that is needed is a smart device, PC, laptop or phone connected to Wi-Fi. For security reasons, connection is password-protected to prevent people from making changes that the supervisor might not want including re-setting counters.

RCT’s EarthTrack tool to improve efficiency, productivity at Silver Lake’s Mount Monger

Silver Lake Resources has upped the efficiency of its earthmoving fleet at Mount Monger in Western Australia following the implementation of RCT’s EarthTrack® information monitoring tool.

RCT recently commissioned the EarthTrack Payload Management System on Silver Lake Resource’s mixed fleet consisting of five Cat 777F dump trucks, one Hitachi 1200-6 excavator and one Hitachi 1900-6 excavator.

The solution provides Silver Lake’s machine operators with real-time information about payload distribution and optimal load weights at the Mount Monger gold operation in Western Australia’s Goldfields region, RCT says.

Site managers can now closely monitor machine and operator productivity, prevent truck strut damage from over loading, reduce tyre wear and achieve better fuel consumption to significantly reduce overall running costs, according to the company.

The system transmits payload data from the truck being loaded to the loading tool – in this case the excavator – which enables the loader operator to fill the truck trays to the optimal weight.

One of the EarthTrack system’s key features is that it monitors payload distribution in real time and alerts the operator of an uneven distribution, allowing them to take action to avoid strut damage. At the same time, the system’s external LED Payload Display relays the load weight to any personnel in visual range of the display.

RCT Account Manager, Scott Phillips, said the system will maximise efficiency and productivity of Silver Lake’s mining fleet.

“This solution enhances the excavator operator’s ability to load dirt in an effective manner that ensures optimal loading conditions with every bucket,” he said. “Ineffective loading can lead to strut damage and wear and tear to machines which results in costly maintenance downtime to the mining fleet.

“This tool will enable site personnel to make better decisions to ensure smooth and consistent operations while allowing site management to monitor the operation closely.”

RCT’s remote water refilling systems cut operator downtime at mine sites

RCT says major mining companies have strongly endorsed the implementation of its remote water refilling systems across all types of water carts and standpipes operating on global mine sites.

The package forms part of RCT’s ControlMaster® Automation & Control technology offer and has been used for many years in water carts in mines while also crossing over to industrial applications.

The ControlMaster Remote Water Refill solution allows cart operators to park at a refilling station and activate the standpipe’s water pump without leaving the machine’s cab. This eliminates the operator’s exposure to the mine’s environment and hazards associated with egress from heavy mining equipment.

Once the water cart reaches 95% capacity, the system’s in-built sensor will turn off the standpipe’s water pump and the machine operator can drive away.

Mining companies have reported the solution is saving significant cycle times at the refilling standpipe and reduces excess water waste associated with errors in manually operating the water pump.

“RCT’s clients believe the system enables the carts to redeploy much faster compared to if the operators were manually activating the pump,” the company says.

The system can be controlled from a cab-mounted interface or via a handheld transmitter depending on the mine site’s preferences.

RCT Account Manager, Phill Dean, said the cost-effective device provides important productivity returns.

“This solution saves a significant amount of operator downtime across the entire water cart fleet and enables more dust suppression activities,” he said. “The technology is easy to install and requires no specialised skills to operate it and contributes to more consistent site operations.”

Dean added: “As with all of RCT’s products, the Remote Water Cart Refill System is technologically-agnostic and has a proven history of being implemented in all water carts and a broad range of standpipes regardless of manufacturer.”

RCT teleremote tech to improve dozer operator safety at PNG gold mine

RCT says it has completed a project to commission its ControlMaster® technology on dozers at a major gold mining operation in Papua New Guinea.

The Australia-based automation specialist has installed and commissioned its ControlMaster Line-of-Sight solution on two Komatsu D275 dozers at the Ok Tedi copper and gold mine.

The technology packages will enable the mine operator to clear landslip in the mine’s central pit, RCT said.

Going forward, the site’s machine operators can stand at a safe distance and direct the dozers to operate beneath the pit’s highwall.

RCT Account Manager, Wayne Carrington, said the solution is an integral part of safe mine operations.

“Mine management are pleased that they can undertake necessary activities within the central pit while ensuring dozer operators are safe,” he said.

RCT says it will provide training to machine operators and ongoing after sales support as required.

RCT helps Evolution Mining transition to fully-autonomous operations at Mungari

RCT says it has successfully commissioned Evolution Mining’s underground LHD fleet at the Mungari gold mine with RCT’s proprietary ControlMaster® automation technology.

The project has transformed Evolution Mining’s underground loader fleet away from its previous teleremote provider in favour of RCT’s fully-autonomous technology solution, RCT says.

RCT installed and commissioned its ControlMaster Guidance Automation solution onto one CAT R2900 underground loader and one CAT R1700 underground loader at the Mungari operation in Western Australia’s Goldfields.

RCT supplied two Automation Centres located at designated work zones within the mine fitted with G-Dash and provides the operators with real-time, graphical machine data.

The project also involved installing a communications network, critical spares parts and a specialised RCT parts cabinet, according to the company.

Ryan Noden, RCT Business Development Manager Mining, said he was pleased RCT had continued to build on its existing relationship with Evolution Mining.

“RCT’s automation solution was previously established at one of Evolution Mining’s other projects and is now helping the Mungari operation further optimise production capabilities,” Noden said.

“We have been working with Evolution Mining for the past few months planning the transition to RCT’s automation solution that will deliver strong productivity gains.

“Our ControlMaster Guidance Automation technology sets Evolution Mining onto a pathway to full mine digitisation with the ability to scale our technology as the mine develops and introduce the latest technology upgrades when required.

“Mungari will receive on-ground technical support through our branch in Kalgoorlie backed by a team of highly experienced automation specialists.”

A spokesperson for Evolution Mining said: “Evolution Mining has seen a dramatic reduction in remote-related machine damage and a huge improvement in operator comfort and workplace enjoyment. It’s wonderful to see Evolution Mining providing state-of-the-art facilities for its employees.”

RCT will also empower site personnel with comprehensive on-site training packages for machine operators and maintenance personnel, it said.

RCT pushes dozer operators in a new direction at Pilbara iron ore mine site

RCT says it has completed its latest automation and control project for a major mining company at one of its iron ore operations in Western Australia’s Pilbara region.

The autonomous solutions specialist supplied and commissioned its ControlMaster® Line of Sight solution on one Caterpillar D10T2 dozer and one Cat D11T dozer and the associated remote control devices for operators.

Site operators can now stand at a safe location overlooking the production area and direct the dozers to push the site’s coarse ore stockpiles and other required activities, RCT said.

RCT Account Manager, Phill Dean, said the technology will protect site personnel while ensuring effective production.

“This project is part of a long-standing relationship delivering leading-edge technology to the major iron ore producer to ensure smooth day-to-day and ad-hoc business activities,” he said.

“The ControlMaster technology integrated seamlessly into both dozer’s operating systems enabling the operators to access the machine’s full range of functionality available by the OEM.”

RCT will provide ongoing after sales support, scheduled servicing and onsite technical assistance as required, it said.

RCT to provide online training for ControlMaster, SmarTrack solutions

RCT, like many other METS companies seeking to connect with miners despite COVID-19 travel restrictions, is bringing its training online.

Its Product Skills training can now be delivered anywhere, anytime thanks to the launch of its online training this week, RCT said.

RCT decided to make the numerous courses available online to upskill workers based in remote mine sites around the world, it said.

“This was deemed even more important due to the current global situation with the COVID-19 pandemic,” RCT’s Product Training Co-ordinator, Sunil Kumar, said.

“We live in a world where everyone wants easy, quick and convenient access to services and the technology is so readily accessible via hand held devices and laptops,” he said.

RCT’s training has expanded to encompass webinar and online training, in addition to the face-to-face training the company has always delivered at various RCT branches around the world or on site.

Participants can now choose to partake in webinar training, where they access the training via their computer and complete it in a virtual classroom. This option allows people to communicate directly with the trainer, ask questions, and interact where needed for the duration of the course.

In addition to webinar-based training, RCT also offers a self-learning option, which offers flexible learning. The courses can be completed anytime, anywhere, as it is all fully online via RCT’s online training portal.

There are numerous courses available ranging from operator and maintenance training for those using RCT’s ControlMaster® automation solutions and industrial Fleet Management solution, SmarTrack® Global.

RCT collaborates with Russian Cat dealer on rockbreaker project

RCT says it has completed a tele-remote project for Russian Caterpillar dealer Vostochnaya Technica (VT) on a fixed position rockbreaker in Siberia.

The pilot project involved commissioning ControlMaster® Teleremote on a fixed position BTI rockbreaker for a large Russia-based mining company at one of its operations in Siberia.

RCT also provided a Digital Vision Kit consisting of two fixed cameras and audio capability and a Fibre Optic Control Station (FOCS) located in site offices on the mine’s surface, it said.

RCT’s Moscow-based CIS Business Development Manager, Stephen Macarow, said the tele-remote rockbreaker was the latest RCT project to be completed at mines in the region.

“RCT was selected to carry out this project due to its experience in integrating automation technology in mining equipment of all makes and models,” he said.

“Operating the rockbreaker from the mine’s surface will safeguard machine operators while also giving them the chance to better utilise the machine’s capabilities.”

As well as installing its Teleremote technology on the rockbreaker, RCT’s bespoke solutions division custom tailored the tele-remote package to the mining company’s specific requirement, RCT said.

“RCT developed a unique auto-stow function at the request of VT and the mining company,” Macarow explained. This function means operators can push a button and retract the rockbreaker arm from the grizzly or steel grate over the ore pass and bring the machine to a parked position.

VT Technology Enabled Solutions Manager, Alexander Voroshilov, said the rockbreaker project was of significant benefit to the customer.

“In order to complete this turnkey project, the VT Technology team has done a big amount of work from equipment delivery from Australia to the mine site, customs clearance, manuals translation and certification, to on-site installation and commissioning under supervision of an RCT engineer,” he said.

“The key factor of the project success is the customer support and good collaboration with a partner, so we really appreciate our partnership with RCT and the customer assistance.”

RCT says it is continuing to provide ongoing technical and after-sales support to the mine site

RCT expands reach of Muirhead, Smartrack and AusProTec solutions with Reliable Industries partnership

RCT has partnered with US-based Reliable Industries to, it says, supply quality technology solutions to mobile equipment around the world.

The partnership involves RCT manufacturing its foundation products, the Muirhead® protection systems, their industrial fleet management system, Smartrack® Global, and its AusProTec™ specialised electrical parts range.

Reliable Industries will supply the products to its existing customer base consisting of mining, power generation and industrial companies located in more than 60 countries, RCT said. The 40-year-old company will explore opportunities to implement additional RCT technology solutions to its clients on a case-by-case basis.

RCT Dealer and Product Management, Andrew Sells, said the partnership will greatly benefit both companies.

“RCT and Reliable Industries both have reputations for providing quality technology options around the world and going forward we can offer our services to a very broad customer base,” he said.

“Both companies understand that prompt service and having stock on the shelf ensures that our customer base is well serviced, both RCT and Reliable share this common value.”

Sells added: “Our Muirhead and AusProTec products incorporate decades of experience operating in mining and industrial operations in some of the world’s harshest conditions and they will rise to any occasion.”

Reliable Industries International Sales Manager, Christopher Callow, said: “Reliable Industries has worked in association with RCT for many years now and they rise to the challenge every time. RCT has a vast array of quality products that solve many problems which our clients encounter across the scope of their organisations.”

Tailings, waste management automation solutions up next for RCT in South America

Having made a name for itself in South America innovating on projects for Codelco, Antofagasta Minerals, Anglo American, BHP, and many others, RCT says it is now delivering solutions for miners in the region in tailings and waste management situations.

The Australia-based company is working with various customers in the region to safeguard their operations in this field with the ControlMaster® range of automation and control solutions, it said.

RCT’s experience in South America dates back two decades.

It all began with the company’s foundation solution, Muirhead® protection systems. These were requested by a client wanting to get more longevity from their bulldozers and loaders which were machine re-builds, according to the company.

Since this initial project, the company has helped deliver fit-for-purpose solutions, encompassing all its brands, to big name clients.

“The South American mining region, in general, is well-known for its copper and gold mines, all of which are located in areas exposed to extreme weather conditions (the heat and the cold) in addition to some being positioned in high altitude locations, making for some precarious working conditions for miners,” RCT said.

“Therefore, RCT’s premier automation and control solutions – ControlMaster have and continue to be in demand in both surface and underground mining operations in the region. While RCT’s Line-of-Sight and Teleremote options dominate the surface mining market, the full automation range is in strong demand for underground mining operations.”

This journey for these solutions began in the early 2000s after RCT completed an audit for ControlMaster Line-of-Sight controllers at BHP’s Escondida mine, in Chile. The company wanted a proven solution to safeguard bulldozer operators manning the run of mine pad feeders and crushers. RCT was able to retrofit the mobile machines with the technology that removed the operators from the cab of the machine and allowed them to operate it from a safe location – ultimately solving the issue for the client, the company said.

By 2008, RCT collaborated with Hexagon Mining to engineer and deliver a bespoke solution to Codelco’s Andina mine that allowed the miner to operate safer and for longer in the lead up to the winter shut down, reducing the number of days they had to stop work. This R&D project saw the delivery of a ControlMaster Teleremote solution, paired with a Muirhead Speed Limiter and combined with Hexagon Mining’s MineOps Geofencing systems installed on a Komatsu WD600 wheel dozer.

It was RCT’s project at Codelco’s El Teniente in 2018 that cemented its reputation in the region, the company says.

RCT’s ControlMaster Automation solution helped El Teniente successfully and safely mine ore-rich mud in what, it says, is believed to be a world-first mining method in these conditions. This feat was facilitated by RCT’s specialised department, RCT Custom, which delivered the bespoke solution to minimise the risk involved in mining in these conditions.

This project required RCT to retrofit its ControlMaster solutions that were previously installed on Codelco’s mobile machines operating at its Andina surface mine site before integrating the refurbished equipment, installing them on working production loaders (Sandvik LH517s) into the existing mine network.

“The solution removed the operator from the cab of the loader and allowed them to control the machine from the comfort and safety of an Automation Station located in an underground control room of the mine,” RCT said. “RCT’s solution allowed El Teniente to recover mud ore reserves that were previously deemed too dangerous to access due to the mud flow into these areas. In addition to this, the loaders were able to tram faster, avoid walls and obstacles after being automated, which significantly increased productivity and reduced machined damage and unplanned downtime.”

RCT’s Commercial Executive, Phil Goode, said it was this project that earned RCT a strong technical reputation.

This project was also monumental for the company as it further reiterated the need for RCT to have more of a local presence and compelled the company to open an office in Santiago, Chile, last year. The team, comprised of five multilingual staff, are working hard to support our existing and new clients in the region.

“Having a team working locally helps RCT to better function in Chile and other South American, Spanish speaking countries,” Goode said. “Technically we have always been very good, but the office allows us to understand the business culture and provide that next level of support to our clients.

“Most importantly, it allows us to provide the first rate level of customer service and after sales support we have built a solid reputation on delivering to all of our clients around the world.”

Currently RCT’s solutions are being delivered in tailings and waste management situations with the company working with various customers in the region to safeguard their operations in this field with the ControlMaster range of solutions, RCT said.