Monitoring Equipment Productivity Improvements in Coal Mines

Spathis A T, ; Sengstock G W,
Organization: The Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Pages: 6
Publication Date: Jan 1, 1995
Benchmarks of mine equipment involved in the excavation process of coal mines would suggest that such equipment is not always operating at an optimum level. Dragline operations and truck/shovel operations rely on efficient use of their plant in order to maintain high mine throughput. The first process which affects the material to be excavated is the drilling and blasting process. Drilling and blasting delivers a fragmented material with a given disposition ready for excavation by mine equipment. As mine operators demand more productivity from their major excavating equipment, many sites are considering the use of productivity monitors to measure their outputs. Some of these productivity improvements will be directly related to the drilling and blasting process, so that as the monitoring systems improve, the opportunities to evaluate all drilling and blasting variables will also improve. This paper reviews current and newer methods for monitoring equipment productivity in mines. These include simple time and motion studies obtained by either manual timing of processes or by automated data collection equipment being adopted by the industry. Case studies for truck/shovel operations are discussed and the productivity improvements are compared with typical industry standards. These improvements relate specifically to parts of the load, haul and dump cycle and the potential for significant improvements are identified. Particular opportunities for drilling and blasting improvements are also presented.
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