Tag Archives: South America

Hexagon’s Mining division to distribute HARD-LINE’s TeleOp tech in the Americas

HARD-LINE and Hexagon’s Mining Division have announced a new partnership at MINExpo 2021, in Las Vegas, that, they say, will enhance their international mining capabilities.

Combining their expertise in surface and underground mining, Hexagon will serve as a major distributor of HARD-LINE’s teleremote technology, known as TeleOp, in North, Central, and South America as well as Saudi Arabia and Kazakhstan.

“Partnering with Hexagon is a significant step in our evolution and really shows our ability and desire to grow and adapt,” Walter Siggelkow, HARD-LINE’s President, says. “This will allow both companies to be even more competitive globally, especially in massive mining markets like Latin America.”

Some other products receiving distribution include HARD-LINE’s RRC (Radio Remote Control) as well as BackBone Networks, Brow Alert, Brake Release and Farsight.

President of Hexagon’s Mining Division, Nick Hare, said: “We’re looking forward to collaborating with HARD-LINE, which shares our vision of a future that’s safer, sustainable and increasingly autonomous.”

Metso Outotec to deliver overland conveyor system to South America mine

Metso Outotec has received an order for a heavy-duty overland mine conveyor system in South America set to run at speeds of up to 6 m/s and a delivery capacity of over 9,000 t/h, the mining OEM says.

The delivery consists of high reliability overland conveyors, including a 2 km single flight conveyor, it said.

The order value is around €10 million ($11.9 million) and it has been booked in the company’s Minerals division March quarter orders received.

Alexandre Martins, Business Manager, Crushing and Conveying Systems business line at Metso Outotec, said: “Metso Outotec’s full range of overland conveyor solutions provides economic and reliable material transportation for both open-pit and underground operations at the lowest total cost of ownership. Metso Outotec’s patented Energy Saving Idlers bring important power savings to long-distance conveyors, reduced belt tension, and extended rollers life, enabling a reduced maintenance cost over the equipment life and a more sustainable operation.”

The Metso Outotec conveyor offering covers complete end-to-end conveyor solutions, it says, including concept studies and definitions for all types of terrains and route types with horizontal and vertical curves.

In addition, the offering also includes post-installation services and maintenance, including a full range of accessories, belts and components for different types of applications.

Gekko brings PMC in as mineral lab services provider in the Americas

Process Mineralogical Consulting Ltd (PMC Laboratory Ltd) and Gekko Systems Inc have signed an agreement that makes PMC the exclusive mineral laboratory services provider for Gekko’s North and South American customer base.

Together the strengths of PMC Ltd and Gekko Systems will be able to provide customers with “innovative data-driven project development and implementation”, the companies said.

PMC Ltd is a rapidly growing mineral services laboratory primarily focused on mineralogy, and has recently expanded to offer metallurgical testing. This collaboration with Gekko Systems is expected to further develop PMC’s metallurgical capabilities and incorporate Gekko’s extensive knowledge of gold processing.

Geoffrey Lane, President PMC Ltd, said: “We at PMC Ltd are excited to be working with Gekko Systems, a world leader in gold processing technologies. Our combined strengths will enable both companies to offer more capabilities for more customers looking to find data supported solutions in an efficient and cost effective manner.”

Mineral processing solutions company Gekko develops innovative flowsheets and brings new technologies to the market. The agreement with PMC adds a dedicated laboratory located in North America and adds new mineralogical testing capabilities aiding in evaluating the suitability of Gekko’s processing technology for specific projects, it said.

Geoffrey Lane, General Manager Global Sales & Solutions, Gekko Systems, said: “Gekko Systems is very pleased to be aligning with PMC Ltd to provide cost effective and efficient metallurgical laboratory testing capabilities in North America. We are also enthusiastic at being able to offer PMC Ltd’s mineralogy expertise to our clients to add further value to their projects.”

Commit Works expands mining software footprint into South America

Commit Works, a mining software company headquartered in Brisbane, Australia, is continuing its expansion plans with a move into South America.

This builds on Commits Works’ growth trajectory into South Africa, North America and New Zealand in 2017, 2018 and 2019, respectively, and comes only seven years since the company was founded in 2013.

While Commit Works is still assessing where its new office location will be, a spokesperson confirmed it was at this stage looking into addresses in Chile or Peru.

The expansion follows the successful relationship the company has been building since December with its first South America customer, a gold mine in Argentina.

Commit Works provides planning, scheduling and visual management software for the mining industry, with its flagship solution, Fewzion, enabling planners to quickly build integrated shift plans, which are provided electronically to mining and support crews, coordinating the complex work being performed throughout each shift.

Paul Moynagh, CEO and Founder of Commit Works, said: “Expanding into South America is an incredible opportunity our entire team is thrilled to have. With our frontline productivity software and proven approach that drives commitment, trust and performance, we can help mines throughout the continent sustainably deliver hard dollar value into the business, and build a better, more collaborative culture for the entire workforce.”

The South America customer in question has been realising preliminary production improvements that are consistent with the double-digit results Commit Works has helped mines elsewhere in the world achieve, the company said. “The foundation of those outcomes has been significant reductions in variability that boost and sustain productivity,” it added.

Moynagh added: “South America has many high-value mines, and it’s important the resources are managed in the most efficient way possible. We want to help mine leaders and their entire teams do that responsibly and safely.”

Moynagh said adding a new office in the region reflected how Commit Works’ software and proven approach will help customers emerge and surge when mines fully re-open following the COVID-19 outbreak.

“Our expansion in the region is an opportunity for us to work with the area’s brightest talent to positively impact the technology and mining sectors, and help mine’s emerge from the pandemic stronger than ever,” he said.

Optimize Group teams up with Rail-Veyor for alternative haulage modelling

Optimize Group says it is supporting innovative material handling system company, Rail-Veyor, with a series of South America initiatives, including the development of a conceptual trade-off study model comparing truck, conveyor and Rail-Veyor scenarios over a life-of-mine plan.

The model considers technical, financial and environmental metrics and is suitable for both open pit and underground operations, the company says.

Optimize Group added: “We look forward to applying the model in future projects, while unlocking economic and environmental value!”

Rail-Veyor, a low cost-in-mine haulage system has, to date, mostly been used underground, with one of its most successful installations the one at Agnico Eagle’s Goldex operation, in Quebec, Canada, which recently set a new quarterly performance record.

ZYFRA looks for South America copper mining growth with VIST’s new Lima base

ZYFRA Group has opened an arm of its subsidiary, VIST, in Lima, Peru, as it looks to expand its digital mining offering into South America and the continent’s massive copper industry.

The announcement comes as Igor Bogachev, CEO of ZYFRA, and Mikhail Makeev, Project Director of VIST, start a two-week tour of Chile and Peru taking in visits to numerous mining companies.

ZYFRA has, up until this point, been supplying industrial manufacturers in Europe and Asia with AI- and IoT- based solutions as well as autonomous vehicles. At the end of last year, it reached a milestone of $30 million in revenue, while announcing plans to enter the markets of Latin America as early as 2019.

Mario Rabines, VIST Business Development Director for LatAm, said: “The heart and soul of the world’s copper extraction, Chile and Peru, are being shaken by the latest technology developments. Within the region, the IT and operations departments are ready to change the status quo of the industry. The value proposition of our ZYFRA and VIST solutions will increase the levels of productivity and safety to record levels not seen in the region yet.”

Currently the most advanced miners in South America are performing a number of processes involving cutting-edge technology, such as drilling and transportation of raw materials with the use of robotics, according to ZYFRA Group. In 2019, the majority of industry players may start using new technologies on an industrial scale, the company added.

On top of international expansion, ZYFRA is eager to complete its ‘Intelligent mine’ project – a complex solution for unmanned surface mining with application of self-driving vehicles, it said. VIST is planning to spend a material share of investment provided by ZYFRA to accelerate its R&D projects including self-driving vehicles, autonomous surface mining machines (robots) and appliances, broader IoT- and AI-based applications as well as predictive analytics.

ZYFRA and VIST have developed an autonomous system for drills and autonomous and tele-operated system for mining vehicles as well as self-driving trucks and loaders. These are currently being demonstrated on BELAZ’s earthmoving equipment.

ZYFRA and VIST say autonomous drilling can bring a 16% productivity increase, while autonomous guidance from hole to hole (based on the electronic design imported from a planning system) can come with an 18% productivity increase.

ZYFRA, founded in November 2017, currently operates in Finland, China, Russia, Bulgaria, and India. Its platform connects over 7,000 CNC machines across the countries. At the end of 2018, more than 200 production facilities have been equipped with its products.

The company acquired VIST in November 2018 for $30 million.

Innovation and integration unlocking doors for Fluor’s mining and metals business

With mining companies looking to replenish spent resources in many commodities, EPC and EPCM contractors’ pipelines are starting to fill up.

IM Editor Dan Gleeson spoke with Tony Morgan, President, Mining and Metals, Fluor, to find out how the contractor is continuing to win business and differentiate its offering from the rest of its peers.

International Mining: How important is securing early-stage involvement in mining projects in terms of eventually winning the major EPC/EPCM contract?

Tony Morgan: It is very important and there are some good reasons for that. If you get a contractor that is used to building significant projects and can apply the right tools in the earlier phase of the project, you will receive an aligned project in terms of the technology used, execution strategy and the techniques, such as modularisation. All of these plans will be built in at the front-end of the project and, when you go into the execution phase, the personnel executing the project will be well-versed in the strategy.

Quellaveco in Peru (pictured), South Flank in Australia, a bauxite mine in Guinea and Peñasquito in Mexico are good examples of projects where we were engaged in the early stages and helped set the projects up for success.

This isn’t to say that if one contractor starts a project, another contractor cannot come in. We have taken over and succeeded in the execution of several projects in this way. This typically occurs when the client deems that the previous contractor will be unable to perform the project’s execution phase because of the project’s size or the contractor has failed to perform in the current phase.

IM: Has the talk from mining companies of more EPC/EPCM contracts being offered with incentives/penalties that effectively share execution risk become a major trend in the industry?

TM: There’s always been a desire to include penalties and incentives in contracts. The extent to which these can be evenly applied really depends on the market, whether contractors are willing to take them on and then the client’s desire to have control over the project.

The best way to execute a project is to allocate the risk to the party that can best control the risk. If you step away from that principle, it can create inequalities in the contract.

Fluor is willing to take incentives and penalties where we have full control of the project, i.e., where we have been engaged from the start, we understand the project and have control over the execution phases. In a lot of our projects, we do that, especially using our engineering, procurement, fabrication and construction model.

In projects where we don’t have full control, there are other contractor arrangements that can be used successfully. For example, we are carrying out a project at the moment where we have an integrated project management team that combines the best personnel from both our client’s team and our team. On this project, there are significant performance incentives at the end of the project.

IM: How has the proliferation of automation, electrification and digitalisation impacted your work as an EPC/EPCM provider?

TM: It’s fair to say nobody – our clients especially – want mines coming into service in the 2020s and beyond that use the technology of 10 to 15 years ago. Automation, electrification and digitalisation are all critical to the success of these future projects.

At Fluor, we are investing a great deal in developing our automation and digitalisation expertise. We are working with IBM on several efforts around predictive analytics. We also have a section of the company focused purely on innovation. We are bringing innovative and automated solutions to projects, including some active and passive sensing technologies used to help safeguard personnel in the field and track equipment and materials.

One of the solutions we have developed is Safety Pin, which allows us to know where every worker is and to notify workers of areas that are not safe to enter.

Innovation is a differentiator for us as we have been adopting various innovations on a number of projects. We know what works and what doesn’t. Others talk about innovation without having applied innovations to large-scale projects.

IM: Where is Fluor seeing most demand for its services on a regional and commodity basis?

TM: We have projects globally, including bauxite and diamond projects in Africa, iron ore projects in Australia and gold projects in Mexico. Copper projects in South America are extremely active right now. We are executing a number of projects in South America – Quellaveco and Spence being two of the largest – and are also engaged on a number of other ones.

This article is part of a larger Q&A to be featured in the December print issue of International Mining