PRESS RELEASE: RCT's ControlMaster Teleremote solutions were installed on two Cat 6050 (Terex RH200) hydraulic shovels and two Cat D11T dozers.
It is believed to be the first time a company has remote-controlled a Cat 6050 (Terex RH200), and it is also the largest machine RCT has worked on to date.
The solution removes the operator from the cab of the machine and relocates them to an air-conditioned cabin located outside of the open-pit operations, enabling them to carry out work away from the mine face.
RCT explained that as Lihir is located at Luise Caldera, an extinct volcanic crater that is geothermally active, Newcrest selected its technology to safeguard operators during the mining process.
In this instance, Newcrest has installed a control centre, designed and manufactured by RCT's Custom department. The station consists of two operator chairs, one equipped with shovel controls and the other with dozer controls to ensure that the machines can be operated simultaneously.
Providing operators with a comfortable environment to work in also reduces fatigue and increases productivity. They are still armed with all the functionality and vision they would have if they were actually in the driver's seat.
"This was a pioneering project with many challenges, and this technology has successfully delivered improved levels of safety for our employees," said Newcrest's group manager mining technology, Tony Sprague.
RCT said that this project is just the start of an overarching mining technology strategy for Newcrest's Lihir.