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Gold

RCT to equip Develop with autonomous loading options at Bellevue gold project


Posted by Daniel Gleeson on 28th July 2022

RCT says it is partnering with mining services company Develop to deploy state-of-the-art digital automation technology at its recently-awarded Bellevue gold operation in Western Australia.

RCT’s digital ControlMaster® solution will empower Develop with the best autonomous technology to safely manage its underground mobile equipment fleet and make consistent production gains, according to the company.

Develop was awarded work valued at around A$400 million ($280 million) at Bellevue Gold’s Bellevue Gold Mine in Western Australia back in April. The contract, which covers a period of almost four years, provides for Develop’s Underground Services division to undertake construction, development and production activities at the underground mine.

The autonomous solutions are in line with Develop’s innovative business ethos of combining impressive technology with experienced professionals to transform operations into mining powerhouses, RCT said. This will see operators use the ControlMaster Automation Centre and manage a Sandvik LH517i underground loader within the underground complex.

In the future the company will roll out additional autonomous Sandvik LH517i loaders in line with its evolving mining fleet requirements as it moves into production activities.

To accommodate a larger autonomous fleet, Develop will harness the power of ControlMaster Multi-Machine Select (MMS) and Multi-Machine Control (MMC) capabilities into its Automation Centre, RCT says.

These features mean machine operators can switch between underground loaders located throughout the mine and subsequently take control of each machine.

Develop will further support the Bellevue fleet by rolling out RCT Connect, which, RCT says, is the only available mining communications infrastructure designed to accommodate autonomous mining equipment.

The specialised Wi-Fi network will ensure consistent communications and very low machine latency between the machine fleet and Automation Centre, according to RCT.

RCT’s Kalgoorlie Branch Manager, Rick Radcliffe, said the work at Bellevue will provide a strong foundation on which to grow a business relationship between the two companies.

“We are very pleased to be Develop’s automation technology supplier and provide cutting-edge solutions and a very high level of service from the beginning at Bellevue,” he said. “We will be there alongside Develop as they kick off autonomous machine activities and we are confident that our technology will deliver results every shift.

“RCT proudly has 50 years of experience supporting Goldfield’s mining companies and we look forward to applying all our knowledge to whatever situation Develop faces in the future.”

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