Machinery operator training may become safer and cheaper thanks to remote control solutions which enable trainees to build their skills without needing to use a machine.
A new underground loader simulator has recently been put to work in a Kazakhstan zinc mine where new operators are being trained in use for manual and remote control modes.
Immersive Technologies, a mine equipment training specialist, has teamed up with mine vehicle guidance systems company RCT to develop the new training package.
RCT provided their Controlmaster CM2000D line of sight remote control system to the simulator, in a joint venture designed to reduce the cost of training new operators and ensure their safety.
The new system means that the company does not need to take machines out of production for use as training tools, so that they can continue their operations without cost to production.
In addition, the use of a simulator means that trainers and trainees are assured the safety of an office environment without any of the risk having a machine controlled by an inexperienced operator.
The ease of access in an office environment also means that training takes less time, without the usual logistical breaks required when using machinery.
RCT senior business development manager Phil Goode said: “Miners can now learn and develop better skills, they can start on manual, then progress to learn Line-of-sight remote control operation, all within the safe confines of a simulator.”
“RCT is very excited that our customers can train remote operators on their simulators.
“Our engineers work with customers to assess and deliver the software and hardware upgrades needed to allow customer to adopt remote control training on their simulators.
“This will speed up the process to save them time and money.”
Immersive Technologies executive director, marketing Wayde Salfinger said they were very pleased with the RCT collaboration.
“It facilitates another way in which Immersive Technologies now delivers productivity and safety improvements to our mining customers,” he said.
“This collaboration ensures our shared customers have access to highly effective remote operation and teleoperation equipment training solutions.
“Demand in mining is growing for more advanced simulation based training, including for tele-remote and semi-autonomous equipment.
“RCT and IMMT are ready to meet this demand. Both companies’ have proven off-the-shelf solutions that are compatible. This combination will drive improved operator performance, machine utilisation and mine profitability.”