ABB Working With AWS To Develop Digitally Integrated All-Electric Operations For Net-Zero Emissions Mining

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  • Together with mining electric vehicle drivetrain developer MEDATech, the two companies demonstrate secure exchange of operational data for production optimization
  • The initiative aims to show reliability, effectiveness and scalability as mining operators move towards all-electric and net-zero emissions
  • ABB, MEDATech and AWS will keep collecting and analyzing the vehicle data during truck testing, with the ambition to ultimately implement the system in a real mine environment

Global technology leader ABB has announced it is working with Amazon Web Services (AWS) to accelerate the adoption of new and sustainable technologies in mining. The two companies are now creating solutions for digitally integrated all-electric operations to help meet industry goals on net-zero emissions.

In a first demonstration, ABB Ability™ Operations Management System (OMS) has already been integrated with heavy-duty EV drivetrain developer MEDATech’s cloud data collection system on AWS. Telemetry data, including battery state and speed of charge, was transmitted in real time from MEDATech’s first-ever 100 percent electric haul truck – paired with ABB’s fast charging pilot solution, ABB Ability™ eMine FastCharge – while ensuring data security using AWS’s Internet of Things (IoT) services. The team used the gathered data to perform a real-time production optimization for test purposes as shown at MINExpo in Las Vegas in September 2021.

Such seamless digital integration of electrical equipment across industrial operations is increasingly important for operational efficiencies through optimized scheduling and planning. Battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and their related charging infrastructure present a challenge and an opportunity as the industry commits to decarbonization and reduced resources and energy consumption.

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Delivering operational and sustainability benefits for EV mine operators
(1/4) Delivering operational and sustainability benefits for EV mine operators
(2/4) ABB Ability™ eMine FastCharge shown in action
(3/4) The new Western Star 4900XD is a world’s first: a 100% electric mining haul truck
(4/4) ABB Ability™ eMine FastCharge, which has been unveiled in pilot phase

ABB and AWS are also proving scalability. AWS enables OMS to ingest, store, process, and analyze operational data from stationary and mobile equipment and dynamically scales to meet the operational demands. The new ABB Ability™ eMine approach relies on the reliable and standardized exchange of equipment and process data to effectively integrate electrical and digital systems from mine to port. ABB is simplifying the integration for its mining customers via a collaborative and interoperable approach, leveraging AWS, which removes management and investment responsibilities normally associated with on-premises infrastructure from the customer.

“In the course of the digital transformation and decarbonization in the industrial sector, customers are looking for end-to-end integrated solutions to optimize their operations,” said Flemming Kongsberg, Director, Global ISV Alliances, AWS. “Together, ABB, MEDATech and AWS have demonstrated a fully integrated solution for mining operators to combine data from electric vehicles and operations to maximize their efficiency and contribute to their sustainability goals. Through this collaboration, we are excited to help deliver this solution to our customers worldwide, providing flexibility, scalability and security in the cloud.”

“We know what data OEMs and mine operators need to ensure a successful transition to electrification,” said Darren Mueller, Director of Sales and Marketing, MEDATech Engineering. “The agnostic vehicle-level telematics systems that we have developed work with AWS and ABB’s solutions to provide mine operators with the real-time vehicle data they need to make important decisions. Mine operators have full control over the information, including analytics modelling for increased productivity, more machine uptime through predictive maintenance and better power usage. We have worked with ABB over five years on mine electrification processes and solutions, including high powered charging and electric-vehicle mine simulations. AWS represents the last piece of this puzzle as we move forward as partners to help decarbonize operations.”

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“A successful digital, automation and electrical transformation journey relies on partnerships and we’ve demonstrated how ABB and AWS, together with MEDATech in this case, can bring their respective capabilities to realize the vision of net-zero emissions,” said Max Luedtke, Global Head of Mining, Process Industries, ABB. “We can work together to achieve practical results that support mining operators to meet industry and sustainability commitments. It is essential to access and analyze electrical equipment data via an open, standardized platform safely and reliably. With electric charging becoming part of the process this will allow more accurate planning and scheduling to meet or even exceed productivity targets.”

With over 130 years of experience in the mining industry, ABB has introduced ABB Ability™ eMine, which is comprised of a portfolio of electrification technologies that makes the all-electric mine possible from mine to port and is integrated with digital applications and services to monitor and optimize energy usage. It can be used to electrify any piece of mining equipment across hoisting, grinding, hauling and material handling and the entire process area.

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ABB’s digital applications can continue to draw on advanced AWS services to reduce process complexity and integrate with existing equipment, process installations and operational technology. ABB and AWS will continue to collect and analyze the vehicle data during the truck testing, with the ultimate goal to implement the system in a real mine environment, as part of an eMine™ project. Having proven the feasibility with the MEDATech battery electric vehicle and looking ahead, the focus will be on driving digital interoperability by scaling towards further mining assets, mobile as well as stationary, and addressing their dependencies to optimize the overall process efficiency.

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