Caterpillar adds upgrades to equipment management system

Caterpillar has announced upgrades to the cat MineStar Terrain, part of its integrated mine operations and mobile equipment management system.

Terrain combines GNSS guidance technologies with integrated office software that allows remote monitoring and fact-based decision-making, boosting efficiency on site. All Terrain products for grading, drilling, and loading have been upgraded.

Terrain for grading improves the efficiency and lowers the cost of grading in applications ranging from production dozing to reclamation. With this update, the D10T2 and D11T dozers can be ordered with factory-installed blade control capabilities integrated into the machine control system. Automating blade movement helps operators move material faster and more accurately, with less fuel and rework. A retrofit option is being developed for the D9T, D10T and D11T.

The newest version for grading also includes a feature that tracks machine status (working or inactive), notes when a unit is inactive and prompts the operator to select a delay code, explaining the inactivity. Information is provided to mine management in a visual timeline report that can be used to assess and improve utilisation.

Terrain for drilling directs the execution of drill patterns and enables remote monitoring of drilling activities. With this upgrade, multiple drills on the same pattern can share the status of each hole drilled in real time. This gives drill operators and office staff a common, accurate view of progress against the plan at all times. Other new features include a training  simulator for drill operators that runs on a personal computer as well as the system’s ability to be used on Atlas Copco D65 drills and on excavators that drill drainage holes in leach pad applications.

Terrain for loading assists operators with movement and placement of material, improving accuracy.

Other improvements include a fully integrated Proximity Awareness feature that alerts the operator when a machine either approaches an avoidance zone or is approached by another unit that has breached specified boundaries. Proximity information is displayed on the same screen as grading and loading information, simplifying the user experience. For shovels and excavators, an upgraded Linkage Avoidance Zone feature offers alarm accuracy.

Terrain also has a new feature for large wheel loader applications that combines fully automatic ore control with improved production tracking capabilities. This allows loader operators to automatically receive 3-D grade block data from the mine plan, eliminating manual updates from the office and reducing the risk of human error. It also automatically tracks material dumped to the crusher or loaded into trucks.