Epiroc, Vale to strengthen mine safety

Epiroc Canada and Vale Canada, a Vale Base Metals subsidiary, have entered into a non-binding agreement to develop, test and utilize groundbreaking mining techniques and equipment to bolster safety processes and drive innovative solutions.

“We are excited about our shared commitment with Vale Base Metals to accelerate the transformation of the mining industry through innovation that will keep pushing the benchmark of safety for workers, without compromising on productivity,” said Sarah Hoffman, vice-president sales and marketing at Epiroc’s Underground division.

The two companies will collaborate to apply and adapt Epiroc’s solutions in automation, electrification, and digitalization across the underground mining cycle in areas from long-hole drilling to blasting, face drilling, bolting, mucking and hauling. Specifically, Vale plans to use Epiroc’s technology to remove workers from the rock face, production drilling areas, and ground support locations in support of safe and efficient mining activities.

“Safety is a central pillar of our operations so we’re excited to develop solutions that strengthen our suite of available technologies to keep workers safe and drive overall efficiencies,” said Luke Mahony, interim chief technical officer at Vale Base Metals. “This partnership with Epiroc will be an important step on our journey.”

Separately, Vale Base Metals announced that its Integrated Remote Operating Center (iROC) in Sudbury, Ontario, Canada, is now servicing all five of its underground mines in Ontario. Using digital technology, iROC serves as an air traffic controller of sorts, continuously monitoring underground operations and providing real-time feedback and support. 

“It’s another way we’re leveraging technology to ensure we’re a safe, reliable, best-in-class operator,” said the miner.

Sources: Epiroc and Vale Base Metals

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