Caterpillar introduce MineStar Edge
New technology platform designed to augment existing Cat MineStar Solutions suite
CATERPILLAR are adding a new platform, MineStar Edge, to augment the Cat MineStar Solutions suite of technologies and to align with the way many operations manage their businesses.
Designed for simple setup and use in soft rock, aggregates and mining operations, Edge creates an operational ecosystem for mining and quarrying companies. Rather than having data in individual silos, Edge brings visibility to the entire operation and allows managers to see how activities early in the process impact those further down the value chain.
MineStar Edge also leverages cloud computing and recent technology advancements, such as data fusion, machine learning and artificial intelligence – meaning it will continue to grow as it collects data, identifies patterns and learns to make decisions.
Caterpillar say these capabilities will allow managers to focus on improving operations rather than collecting and interpreting data. Edge also automates data collection, which ensures accuracy, unburdens personnel and allows managers to trust the information they receive.
‘MineStar Edge makes it possible to measure, manage, analyse and improve the entire mining operation,’ said Sean McGinnis, MineStar Solutions product manager. ‘Yet the design makes Edge cost-effective even for smaller operations – with the capability to scale up as needed. This platform will grow with Caterpillar and our customers.’
Because Edge is delivered as a cloud-based, subscription-managed application, it reduces costs of deployment, service and training. Caterpillar take care of all office-based deployment, support, updates and upgrades. The platform design also reduces the time from order to use.
Customers select an offering by role, function or task – paying only for those functionalities they need. This new model, say Caterpillar, makes buying and using technology more cost-effective and efficient and allows operations of every size and type to more easily take advantage of the benefits technology makes possible.
Edge allows supervisors to access information from a computer or tablet from anywhere with an Internet connection, whether in the pit or in a distant office. Receiving information in near-real-time allows supervisors to make changes during the shift to achieve performance goals.
‘In early deployments of Edge Equipment Tracking and Production Recording, we saw mines achieve significant gains,’ said Ryan Howell, commercial manager of Cat MineStar Solutions. ‘A limestone quarry increased production by 20% by using the information to reduce underloads, and tracking data helped them improve blend compliance.
‘We estimate that sites currently using paper reporting systems will be able to increase production by 20% to 30%. For mines using production-recording technology, Edge will increase accuracy, and, through the use of cloud technology, reduce system support tasks for the customer.’
Edge Equipment Tracking provides consistent information on each asset, including data on location and movement, velocity, payload, cycle times and fuel level, as well as hour meter readings and time utilization.
Supervisors can view scheduled and unscheduled downtime along with scheduled and unscheduled operational stoppages, using this information to drive operational changes to maintain productivity.
Edge Production Recording pairs with Equipment Tracking to deliver an accurate and automated near-real-time solution that measures and reports on every aspect of the load-haul-dump cycle.
It provides accurate, reliable and actionable data with no operator input required, eliminating the risk of incorrect data entry, and helps sites of all types and sizes to improve the efficiency of their operations and increase their overall tonnes produced.
Edge also includes the availability of in-cab displays to empower operators. With accurate information, loading tool operators can improve payload compliance and material selection.