Orange supplies Russian mining firm with Wi-Fi based RTLS to grade, sort raw coal
Russian coal mining company Raspadskaya has deployed a Wi-Fi based real-time IoT tracking solution from Orange Business Services to help sort different grades and types of coal at a coal preparation factory in the Kemerovo region of Russia.
Raspadskaya, partly owned by British steel making and mining group EVRAZ, transports raw coal from its open-pit mines to a 40,000 square-metre open-air storage facility, where it is tagged for different grades of coal concentrate. The challenge is to make sure different grades of coal are not mixed, said Orange Business Services. Mixing, due to human error, risks tainting the product, it said.
Coal is graded before loading onto trucks. The new IoT solution combines telemetry tags and transmitters, connecting with outdoor Wi-Fi hotspots, in a real-time tracking system (RTLS) between the mines and the warehouse. Transport tags are attached to the trucks from the mines; these communicate with Wi-Fi base stations, and communicate with beacons in the cabs to alert drivers if they try to unload coal in the wrong grade bay.
All the new sensors and base stations are packed in thermal casing so equipment can operate in extremely low temperatures at the warehouse.
Alexey Chervyakov, director for industrial safety and ecology at Raspadskaya, said: “The IoT solution effectively and efficiently automates the control of the coal unloading zone, removing the risk of human error. The digitalization of these types of processes guarantees the highest possible quality of coal products and reduces costs by reducing manpower requirements.”
Richard van Wageningen, regional senior vice president at Orange Business Services, said: “Our work with Raspadskya shows how connected objects can be a game changer for an enterprise, increasing operational efficiency and providing real, tangible business value. We have extensive experience in the mining industry, and this project highlights how the power of industrial IoT in automating relatively simple tasks can make a huge difference to output.”