MICROMINE has signed a major contract with Independence Group to help drive productivity and cost efficiencies at the Nova nickel-copper-cobalt Operation in the Fraser Range, Western Australia.
MICROMINE will implement its leading fleet management and mine control software solution, Pitram, at Nova, which is 100 per cent owned by IGO and is located approximately 160 kilometres north-east of Norseman.
MICROMINE implementing Pitram at Nova, a mine control and management reporting system that delivers mining production efficiencies, comes on the back of a resurgence in Western Australia’s nickel sector, which increased in value by 26 per cent in 2017-18 to $2.6 billion, after several years of decline.
Nova began commercial operation in July 2017 and produced 22,258 tonnes of nickel, 9,545 tonnes of copper and 740 tonnes of cobalt at a payable cash cost of A$2.78/lb Ni in the 2018 financial year.
IGO gave guidance that production at Nova will increase by around 20 per cent in FY19 to 27,000 to 30,000 tonnes of nickel, 11,000 to 12,500 tonnes of copper, and 850 to 950 tonnes of cobalt.
MICROMINE’s Pitram Operations Manager Daren Hinchliffe welcomed the opportunity to work with IGO and help identify operational efficiencies that would optimise Nova’s production while also improving safety and control room transparency at the underground mine.
“MICROMINE’s fleet management and mine control solution Pitram, will be used by operations personnel, to capture insights and data from mobile equipment and underground mining activities, in real time.” Mr Hinchliffe said.
“Using Pitram’s voice-based mine control system, underground operators can call in their activities, locations and status to mine control, and performance results can be monitored constantly, allowing for continuous improvement.”
“Using Pitram’s automated technology, shift supervisors can keep track of what is going on throughout the mine, at all times, results and performance can be monitored constantly.”
“This will provide IGO with critical data as to how the mine is performing and, help identify bottlenecks, enabling the company to respond quickly to opportunities to implement process improvements.”
IGO’s Chief Operating Officer, Matt Dusci, believes this will drive significant value through productivity efficiencies and cost savings at Nova and ultimately serves as a platform for future integration with automation at the mine.
“We are pleased to implement an excellent system such as MICROMINE’s Pitram at Nova, which we believe will improve production, decrease costs, and offer real time data to ultimately enhance the overall capabilities of our operations,” Mr Dusci said.
MICROMINE’s roll-out of Pitram at Nova commenced in Dec 2018 and is expected to be completed in early 2019.