Coal Age

NOV 2018

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18 November 2018 autonomous haulage systems continued tively. "Ideally, we want to see wide roads and larger dumping and loading areas," Yureskes said. "Well-maintained haul roads are key and we want to minimize manned vehicle interactions, such as bulldozer, graders, pickups, etc." Successful implementation depends on acceptance and the knowledge of the personnel operating the system. The Pit Patrol- ler needs to consistently communicate with Central Control. The loading equipment operators create spot courses for the autono- mous trucks and maintain the loading area. The operators on the support equipment must also understand the system and the im- portance of removing obstacles. The Central Controller monitors the system, handles the exceptions and coordinates with Dispatch. Komatsu has a robust training program for technicians and overall equipment operations. "It starts with establishing a foundation through eLearning and virtual classroom," Yure- skes said. "The object is to get people up to speed as quickly as possible and deploy the training to as many people as we can at one time. We can do that on site or at the proving grounds. We also offer simulator training. A lot of this training takes place well before these personnel are in the field interacting with the autonomous system." Once they are in the field, Komatsu starts the hands-on vali- dation training. "They have to demonstrate a certain level of skills before they can graduate to the next level," Yureskes said. "It's competency-based training that's certificated. This is included in the site licenses that are issued to the mine. The foundation and process of training would be very familiar, but the autonomous aspect would be something new." Yureskes reminded people that the system is not a one-size- fits-all solution. "With these installations, there is a lot of custom- The Komatsu AHS is based on the Modular Dispatch FMS and the FrontRunner program. Komatsu's autonomous systems are positioned at the midpoint of the operating spectrum.

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