Challenge

Client is one of the leading mining companies having the global presence. Three of its mining businesses are based in South Africa focusing on platinum, iron ore and Thermal Coal. In order to monitor the health status of different pieces of mining equipment, a web interface in a form of Equipment Monitoring System was a must for our client. They wanted a solution that performs analysis and interprets mining data obtained from different types of equipment; monitors working condition of the equipment pieces and minimizes the breakdowns.

Key challenges during implementation of Equipment Monitoring System are listed below:

  • Status aggregation from the raw data obtained from mine equipment was very cumbersome and difficult to implement.
  • Calculation of equipment faults from running average of trends and dynamic addition of trends for each model of mining trucks.
  • Automating the process of system switching from one operation to another after the predefined interval of time.

Solution

TatvaSoft provided a solution to Mining Industry based client that proved extremely useful and monitored the health status of different pieces of mining equipment. The development of the system was carried out in phases as mentioned below:

  • Phase 1: The web application Equipment Monitoring System is developed to monitor the health of the equipment in mines including Haul Trucks, Dozers, Excavators, Shovels, etc. The website display overall status of the fleet and allows drill down to view the status of equipment including the status of different components like Engine, Breaks etc.
  • Phase 2: Web interface was developed that integrated long wall monitoring with current design and reported information such as health status of pieces of equipment.
  • Phase 3: Equipment Monitoring System improvements which included changes in display method, calculations performed on raw results data for display, database changes, fault measurement and recommended actions to resolve faults etc.
  • Phase 4: Design enhancements, optimization and standardisation.

The purpose of such phased development of the system was to incorporate client's requirement of getting feedback from system users and make changes accordingly in the previous version of the system.

System Features:

  • Automate the process of switching operations and different pieces of equipment (30 seconds on each piece of equipment per operation)
  • Enormous volumes of process information are collected, archived, retrieved and distributed at high speeds using powerful and commercially available Proficy Historian tool that also provides data compression and security at the same time other than the boost in operational performance
  • Monitor current working condition of different equipment and their parts
  • Recommended actions to track and fix the faults
  • Analyse weekly trends and faults in the machines
  • Report and graph that offers the comparison with different truck models across various time window
  • Interactive graphs offer features such as zooming, changing y-axis minimum and maximum and time slots
  • Export the graphs to excel and PDF
  • Authorisation module takes care of user's access privileges and user settings
  • Facility of GUI personalisation through customisation of font, background, colour and displays

Result

By introducing Equipment Monitoring System in their daily operations, the client realised the following benefits:

  • Saves time and efforts by automating difficult and manually near to impossible calculation for equipment.
  • The graphical representations of information (calculated from raw data) helped in the better analysis of the process and resulted in better decisions.
  • Equipment breaks down is identified at earlier stages hence proper actions are taken against it. Resulted in operational cost reduction, enhanced equipment efficiency and hence increase in production capacity.

Technology
  • Technology : Microsoft ASP.Net, C#
  • Database : Microsoft SQL Server
  • External Tools or Components : Proficy Historian, .Net Charting, Highcharts
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