Anglo and Atlas have ramped up a joint development project focused on creating new underground mining machines.
The two companies have been working together since 2012, co-operating in research and development focused on mechanical excavation technology, and are now in an advanced stage with proof-of-concept testing scheduled to start in the third quarter of the year.
Anglo American said the new technology is based around rapid mine development and on making hard rock mining faster and safer.
"The mining industry need to be more cost efficient and predictable in its ore production systems; one way to achieve this is to move towards continuous mining systems based on mechanical rock cutting," Atlas Copco manager of global strategic projects and alliances, Mikael Ramstrom, explained.
"This new type of mining machine is expected to transform the extraction process of ore from underground hard rock mines," Atlas Copco added.
"If all goes according to plan, it will be a milestone for the partnership and one of the most significant examples of innovative technology to emerge from Anglo American’s FutureSmartTM approach to mining."
Anglo American Group head of technology development Donovan Waller said the FutureSmartTIM is a new approach to mining.
“We are looking for a radical transformation of the way we do things and that means taking a fresh approach,” Waller said.
“Anglo American believes in seeing how technology can benefit entire systems, not just certain just parts of them. We also believe that the benefits to the industry as a whole can only be realised through openness and collaboration.”