With mines maturing and ore grades falling, it becomes harder and harder for sites to maintain similar productivity levels observed in the last decade. The arrival of Industry 4.0 marks an important turning point in the industry but the big question remains, is it safe?
Mining as an industry will need to embrace the next generation of industrial automation using the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), big data analytics and human-machine interaction where these are brought together as Industry 4.0 to optimise resource extraction and production safely, efficiently and sustainably. While it is accepted that no system is flawless, the challenges that IIoT brings in this rapidly changing Industry 4.0 era is not something we’ve dealt with before. In an industry where safety is the number one priority, how can we overcome these challenges?