Top Mining Technologies for Startups to Explore in 2019

Posted on: 4 January 2019

Notably, mining companies can improve the chances of success by partnering with research centres or by adopting new technological advancements early. This article highlights some of the latest technologies that startup mining companies should explore in 2019 to gain a competitive edge.

Autonomous Mineral Transport 

If your operations are based in remote mining locations such as North Western Australia, then transportation of minerals to processing ports can be a challenge. Furthermore, finding staffs that are willing to work in such harsh environments is difficult, which can affect the company's productivity significantly. Nonetheless, an autonomous train or truck system can address staffing challenges effectively without significant capital injection. Since the trains and trucks are controlled remotely, there is no need to hire specialised drivers as is the case with big mining corporations. Besides, the truck and rail system is easy to set up for small-scale mining.

Microwave Energy for Ore Pre-Treatment 

With about 5% of the global electricity output being used to grind rocks in mines, then it is fair to imagine that mining processes are laden with inefficiencies. However, the use of microwave energy to pre-treat mineral ores, especially copper, eliminates the inefficiencies. The process involves exposing the metal ore to a microwave treatment before the grinding process.

As the ore undergoes microwave treatment, the alternating electromagnetic field heats certain areas of the core mineral and causes micro-fracturing that allows for easy processing of coarse ores, unlike traditional grinding techniques. Besides, the microwave energy pretreatment process lowers energy consumption by as much as 30%. Your company will also minimise wastage since the microwave technology supports processing of small-grained ores.

Virtual Reality 

Although the virtual reality know-how is pervasive in most industries, adoption in the mining industry has not taken off as well as 3D and X-ray diffraction technologies have. However, all that is changing now with safety and health concerns in the mining industry taking centre stage. Therefore, your startup mining company must focus on improving the working conditions of workers and equipping them with the right tools of the trade. Notably, the working environment inside a mine might be overwhelming for first-time workers. Nonetheless, you can consider adopting the virtual reality technology that makes it possible to train workers in a risk-free environment by simulating an actual mine.

These are just a few trends to consider. To learn more about how to amplify your new mining company, reach out to local mining engineering companies.


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