AUTHOR: Not specified
PUBLICATION: Modern Mining
IMAGE: Original article
Bosch Rexroth Smart Mine (Smart Mine) has joined the Bosch Rexroth Africa Group to revolutionise the mining industry with innovative Artificial Intelligence of Things (AIoT) solutions. These include Smart Conveyor, Stop-Start Retrofit, Smart Inspection, and Smart Lockout, all of which aim to optimise mining operations and promote sustainable business practices.
Jonas Corali, General Manager of Smart Mine, will be responsible for driving the mission and vision of the company. Other key personnel include Eddie Kleingeld, Regional Sales and Business Development Engineer, and Rodrigo Conte, Project Manager. The team also includes field engineers: Sifiso Shange, Themba Nyathi and Tshanduko Matshusa. The latter two were graduates of the Yes4Youth Programme, a government-business collaboration that seeks to reduce youth unemployment in South Africa.
Corali discusses how Smart Mine is committed to delivering cutting-edge solutions to the mining industry, driving growth across the African continent:
Smart Mine's history in South Africa
Smart Mine previously operated primarily in Brazil and Chile in South America until it landed its first South African deal in 2019. The company later joined the Robert Bosch brand and is now a fully fledged South African company that falls under Tectra Automation in the Bosch Rexroth Africa Group. “Our mission is to provide AIoT mining solutions that promote sustainability, future readiness, and business growth through digital transformation,” Corali said. “Our solutions have already shown a significant return on investment for both Smart Mine and our clients.”
Mining industry solutions
“Safety and efficiency are top priorities in mining, and our innovative solutions can help businesses achieve streamlined processes. Our Smart Conveyor is the future of idler roller monitoring, utilising cloud-based temperature sensors to identify problem areas along the conveyor belts. The alarm system eliminates the need for manual problem identification and provides instant location detection. Furthermore, it can reduce unplanned maintenance, thus increasing the asset availability in the mining operation,” said Corali.
Smart Conveyor is the most scalable conveyor belt monitoring system available, allowing up to 5 000 sensors per kilometre. It is currently used in three locations in South Africa and is also suitable for various industries such as cement, logistics, sugar, and paper.
Installed on heavy-duty mine equipment, the Stop-Start Retrofit solution detects lack of motion, and stops the engine. It plays an imperative role in reducing CO2 emissions and supports a mine’s decarbonisation goals.
Smart Inspection and Smart Lockout are two other solutions offered by the company. Smart Inspection is a locally developed, web app-based system that streamlines inspection processes, eliminates paper-based forms, and reduces errors. It is customisable to meet each business' specific needs.
Smart Lockout supports on the isolation energy process in specific areas for any asset maintenance, which is often located at a distance from the energy source. The solution ensures the safety of workers by preventing the accidental startup of machinery during maintenance or repair work, reducing the risk of accidents and injuries.
Smart Mine highlights
Smart Mine has experienced some remarkable milestones since inception, but one achievement stands out. Despite facing the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, its first Smart Conveyor solution was installed in Africa when the virus was at its most rampant. “It was a challenging time,” says Corali, “but we pushed forward with our mission to revolutionise the mining industry with our cutting-edge technology and great results have been achieved to date.”
“The installation of this ground-breaking technology was a true highlight and it presented an opportunity to showcase the incredible capabilities of our innovation,” Corali points out. “Smart Conveyor's remote monitoring capabilities proved invaluable when site access was difficult, ensuring successful mining and minimised risks.”
“Subsequently, there has been an influx of enquiries and interest from potential clients. The success of Smart Conveyor has proven to be a game-changer for the mining industry,” Corali added.
Smart Mine benefits
AIoT enables secure and transparent data sharing, enhances efficiency, reduces costs, and improves safety in the mining process. It also enables the tracking and tracing of materials, promoting responsible sourcing and sustainability. Smart Mine's innovative solutions benefit the wider community and environment, reinforcing Bosch Rexroth Africa’s commitment to sustainable economic growth.
Bosch Rexroth Africa is committed to the digital transformation of the mining industry by supplying it with the best cutting-edge solutions on the market.