Five-point action plan to decarbonise South African mining

Erik Pretorius, Global Lead, Large and Strategic Projects, Mining and Minerals Processing, ABB.
Erik Pretorius, Global Lead, Large and Strategic Projects, Mining and Minerals Processing, ABB.

Decarbonising the mining industry requires a purposeful methodology combined with a suite of solutions, says Erik Pretorius, Global Lead, Large and Strategic Projects, Mining and Minerals Processing, ABB.

“Our automation and digital portfolio empowers miners to not only consider, but to succeed, in their ‘all-electric’ ambitions despite the shortage of electricity in the region,” says Pretorius.

The ABB eMine solution consists of a broad portfolio of integrated electrification and automation solutions and takes on a different priority or definition in the respective regions globally. It focuses on supplying power to mining vehicles, with fit-for-purpose electrification to achieve the most optimised electrified process. In addition, the solution integrates with ABB Ability applications to plan, monitor, and control processes to optimise operations and energy usage.

A phased approach enables mines to immediately lower carbon footprints with a limited upfront capital investment, while simultaneously advancing progressively as technology becomes more mature, scalable and cost-effective.

ABB has developed a five-point action plan to develop an electric mine:

  1. A strong foundation: ABB’s broad portfolio

From pit to port and mine to market, we are equipped to electrify your mine. Our fit-for-purpose solutions are designed to meet the operational demands of the modern mine, and they are backed by ABB’s decades of real-world experience in electrifying, automating and digitally connecting mine equipment and operations.

  1. Collaboration to combine expertise and optimise outcomes

An all-electric mine requires all working together. The time to change is now. But the mining industry is clear that when it comes to electrification, nobody can make it alone. Partnerships and co-creating solutions with OEMs, other mining companies and governments are needed to successfully integrate electrification in mines.

We are working with OEMs to fast-track the development of new emissions-reducing systems with electrification and automation of the whole mining operation the goal. Our joint development and co-creation approach leverages the domain expertise of key partners to meet a wider range of needs.

  1. Added value by early involvement in your all-electric mine design

An all-electric mine looks a lot different than a traditional one. Your ABB team will partner with you during the earliest stages of pre-planning and design, which will increase added value, provide greater costs savings, and reduce complexity.

By getting in early, we can provide interoperable, fit-for-purpose solutions and technologies that make mines safer, smarter, and reduce carbon emissions. By integrating the whole mine digitally, we are set up to plan, monitor and control processes, and optimise operations and energy usage.

  1. Solutions tailored to unique requirements of all-electric mines

Building on decades of mining project electrification experience and expertise, and over ten years’ experience in providing charging infrastructure for buses, trucks and cars, we are able to offer solutions that are uniquely designed to handle the requirements of the mining industry based on latest technologies.

  1. ABB lifecycle services

ABB services are tailored to the specific challenges of our customers. Through our advanced digital services, our mining experts can monitor your plant remotely 24/7 to help keep your production up and running. Advanced digital mining services can collect and analyse your mining asset and operational data, providing remote expert support to identify, categorise, and prioritise actions.

Through remote services, predictive maintenance, and upgrades and retrofits, ABB helps mining companies ensure maximum performance throughout the mine’s lifecycle.

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