Innovation and technology are playing increasingly valuable roles in boosting performance and sustainable efficiency in mines throughout Africa. Schneider Electric, which has been partnering with mining companies for more than four decades, has a dedicated Mining, Metals and Minerals (MMM) Division and a digital technology platform that is positively impacting productivity in the mining sector.
Marc Ramsay, Vice President of the Anglophone Africa Mining, Metals and Minerals Industry Business Unit at Schneider Electric SA, says that of all the trends impacting the mining industry currently, none is likely to be as critical as digitalisation for the over-arching impact it is beginning to have on every aspect of the industry operation, while also offering significant potential for improving operational efficiency.
This is borne out by Deloitte’s ‘Tracking the Trends 2019 in the Mining Sector’ which states, “The mining industry appears poised for greater growth than it’s seen in a decade, but today’s market realities are very different than those of the past. Mining companies now need to determine how to operate in a market characterized by constant disruption, volatility, rising stakeholder demands, a widening talent gap, dwindling access to key inputs such as energy and water. Solving this value conundrum mandates them to … push the boundaries on their digital transformation. It also requires them to make technology a strategic priority by acknowledging its role as an enabler across every facet of their business.”
Ramsay says Schneider Electric is proud to be leading the digital transformation of energy management and automation in mining. “We are continuing to develop solutions from our areas of expertise that include IT, buildings, industry and infrastructure, and utilities, to contribute to enabling mining companies achieve new levels of efficiency and productivity.”
“The company is committed to open architecture and open standards in its technologies, such as the adoption of ethernet as a communication protocol – long before the market standardised on it, and this is a validation of the strategy, as are seeing with the IoT and Industry 4.0 trends.”