New calculator could cut heavy machinery idling costs

UK-based MachineMax has launched an online-based savings calculator built to aid mining operators cut idling costs
New calculator could cut heavy machinery idling costs New calculator could cut heavy machinery idling costs New calculator could cut heavy machinery idling costs New calculator could cut heavy machinery idling costs New calculator could cut heavy machinery idling costs

Idle times could represent as much as 40% to 50% of total running time for mining equipment

The tool considers the types of machines for which a user is seeking savings, as well as the size of the mine's fleet and the operator's hourly rate; cost assumptions are modelled using collected data from customers and standards. It takes about two minutes to complete.

The calculator also has an advanced savings option, which can offer more accurate results using actual site costs, including fuel and maintenance.

"On a mine site, some idle time cannot be completely avoided; however, it may be an indicator of an underlying bottleneck or process inefficiencies which can be resolved," business strategy manager Jennifer Thomson said. She pointed out that, either way, equipment was usually idle more than necessary.

"Idle time results in unnecessary direct operating costs as the machine is still running, consuming fuel, contributing towards emissions, all whilst under the control of the operator, all of which have an associated cost."

No matter the reason for the idle time, it can create indirect costs through unnecessary wear on components and premature filter and fluid changes.

"If the machine is idling, then by implication it is not being productive, so there is an opportunity cost to missing out on revenue from missed production," she added.

The improved numbers, according to MachineMax, can be significant, and that does not account for increased productivity from a boost in equipment output.

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