Engineering & Mining Journal

AUG 2018

Engineering and Mining Journal - Whether the market is copper, gold, nickel, iron ore, lead/zinc, PGM, diamonds or other commodities, E&MJ takes the lead in projecting trends, following development and reporting on the most efficient operating pr

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82 E&MJ • AUGUST 2018 MINING IN PERU ters, therefore large volumes, for which it plans to introduce the latest technologies, such as real-time 3D scanning technology to minimize shotcrete wastage, and mechani- cal fan hanging devices to improve safety, according to Greg Jackson, managing direc- tor of Byrnecut Offshore. AESA, in partnership with GE, has also been investing in new underground tech- nologies, particularly in the development of electrical scoops. "We are one of the first companies to introduce such equipment into mining operations," said Mario Ma- tuk. "It will take time to reduce the size of the batteries and increase their power and duration, but we are already on that path. Battery-operated machinery do not lose power at high altitude, which is a particular advantage in Peru." Beyond that, Matuk also described AE- SA's pilot project for a paperless reporting system, the usage of data analytics to im- prove maintenance performance and other initiatives related to safety, such as virtual reality training and identification technolo- gies via smartphones to track each worker's training levels and authorizations to operate equipment. "Optimizing productivity for the mining industry will be crucial in the near future as the upcycle heats up and human resources becomes an issue," said Matuk. Ruiz Conejo of JRC agreed on the need for further mechanization and digitalization: "From our perspective, the only way to bet on the upcoming opportunities is to incor- porate the latest technologies across all pro- cesses to execute massive exploitation meth- ods. Related to this is the need to train all our people to be able to manage large-scale operations," he said. Safety aspects The aforementioned trends for larger under- ground mining also provide for a safer work- ing environment. While achieving economies of scale and incorporating the latest technol- ogies may imply a bigger initial investment, this will pay off in the long run, said Morales of Mas Errazuriz: "Many see safety as an ex- penditure, but safety is an investment. With a safe environment, productivity rates will increase. If the industry continues moving towards the integrated contract model, not only productivity will increase, but also the overall safety records in the country." Local contractor Pevoex is also closely in- volved with the safety aspects of mining op- erations as the core business of the company is drilling and blasting services. Its general manager, Rómulo Mucho, raised a problem that is costing a lot of time and money to contractors: "In Peru we have not standard- ized the induction procedure to go to the different mines. There is a whole system around it which involves a lot of medical pro- viders and a lot of money. Chile has already solved this issue, but we have not," he said. Mucho assured that the implications of this reach the training programs of young people across the industry: "This lack of standardization also prevents students to do internships in the mines, because the induc- tion process takes more than a month and it is simply not feasible for them." Beyond drilling and blasting, Pevoex has also expanded its service range to provide general earthmoving works, including tail- Rómulo Mucho, general manager, Pevoex.

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