Industry 4.0 offers the opportunity for manufacturers to optimize their operations by knowing what needs their attention, providing better analysis & insightful maintenance within a reasonable timeframe along with auto-correct. Enhancing the end-to-end performance of the mine-to-market value chain can be a major source of value creation. The mining value chain—which includes everything from extracting raw material to delivering products to customers—is the foundation of the industry. Companies that manage their value chain well can establish a significant source of competitive advantage and value creation. According to the World Bank Group, clean energy needs will escalate the demand for rare earth minerals by nearly 500% by 2050. The fourth industrial revolution holds the key to the world's carbon neutral future. Mining can be the gateway to the world’s carbon-neutral future with its green energy storage systems. While this growing demand holds much promise for mining companies, it also creates new challenges. Technology and proactive maintenance benefits have the potential to transform mining operations, starting with condition monitoring. Mining 4.0, offers the transformation driven by the adoption of automation and digital technologies. It facilitates capabilities such as digitization, automation, analytics, artificial intelligence and machine learning, establishing a powerful foundation for proactive maintenance solutions and innovation. In addition to managing and minimizing the impact of failures, mitigating downtime and reducing maintenance costs, it also helps to increase worker safety, reduce energy consumption and meet environmental requirements.
Logistics processes are the backbone of any profitable mining enterprise and constitute one of the key areas of optimization. Miners face a considerable challenge to manage logistics as mines are usually located in the remote hinterland. And, since logistics in mines use multi-modal transport systems railway rakes, containers, trawlers etc., mining companies need to have end-to-end visibility to ensure that the extracted ore reaches the consumption point in time and avoid the risk of theft in transit. There is a need to integrate the disaggregated modes of communication that results in not only great inconvenience but also an excess cost. India’s PM Gati Shakti - National Master Plan for Multi-modal Connectivity, is essentially a digital platform that brings 16 Ministries including Railways and Roadways together for integrated planning and coordinated implementation of infrastructure connectivity projects.The multi-modal connectivity provides integrated and seamless connectivity for movement of people, goods and services from one mode of transport to another. It will facilitate the last mile connectivity of infrastructure and also reduce travel time for people.
Moreover, it is difficult to distinguish between supply chains, which manage inbound and outbound logistics and warehousing, and value chains, which are made up of integrated end-to-end processes. Historically, comprehensive management of the latter has not been a priority for mining companies. This oversight has resulted in siloed operations (logistics and commercial services) and organizational setups in which responsibilities are distributed to optimize individual steps (mining, processing, rail, or shipping), rather than a comprehensive whole. While preparing to address these tighter regulations, mining companies must significantly reduce their environmental footprint to satisfy the increasing push for disclosure by governments, investors, and stakeholders. To date, the mine-to-market value chain has often been handled within organizational silos, which have limited coordination and real-time data exchange. Understanding the mining value chain as a single integrated process, however, can allow companies to take a truly comprehensive view of performance.
The global mining industry has faced unprecedented challenges from COVID-19, volatile commodity prices, and carbon neutrality commitments. Digital innovations in supply chain automation could provide the breakthrough for improvement in mining efficiency and productivity, lowering operating costs, and providing a safer working environment. Robotics Process Automation (RPA) tools and touchless technologies automate routine jobs and bring real-time visibility and control over mining operations. Automation also eliminates duplication of jobs, reduces operating costs, generates advanced data analytics, and frees up time for professionals to focus on decision making, solving problems, and improving communications. Mining companies can optimize the flow of crew, material, and equipment with digital technologies, and innovate and respond faster to supply chain disruptions. The key to unlocking business value is to see innovation as a mindset change supported by process improvements and technology adoption.
Automating the right tasks under logistics can overcome the challenges faced by miners through efficient optimization of the entire supply chain. With a sense of urgency and precision at the heart of this module, the solution caters to the most challenging logistics problems including but not limited to dealing with pilferage, untraceable material movement and porous/opaque movement of mineral carrying vehicles plying within the mining premises. Working hand-in-hand with the modules such as autonomous weighbridges operation, e-Transit pass, Invoice & e-waybill generation process and ERP, the best in class value proposition is guaranteed for any modern-day mining enterprise.
CSM’s suite of multi- modal digital logistics management can breakdown operational silos in the mining value chain and give end-to-end visibility that enables better production planning and pit-to-port optimization, bringing in gains like higher efficiency, enhanced transparency, lower Turn Around Time (TAT) and cost optimizations with minimal human intervention. The successful implementation of DLMS in JSW Steel Limited has shown a remarkable impact on value creation, saving money and time. It has reduced the time by 81 % at critical touch points of dispatch trucks (In-Bound of the mines) and an average of only 3 hours less TAT (Turnaround Time) per permit. The reduced weighbridge operating cost, errorless and optimization of resources have enhanced the end-to-end performance of the mine-to-market value chain with increased productivity of 20%.
Multi-modal digital logistics management solution includes the following major modules and areas of functionalities: