Case study: Autonomy improves energy efficiency
Thiess’ autonomy journey began in 2012 and has produced safety and environmental benefits that continue today.
In September 2022, Thiess, WesTrac and Caterpillar® partnered to deliver a series of autonomous drilling world-firsts at a New South Wales project. These included piloting the use of the drills in a production environment using an off-site remote operating centre, and the simultaneous operation of three autonomous drilling rigs from a single remote operating station.
Improved efficiency due to autonomy has seen a 7.7% reduction in fuel consumed per metre of drilling. Autonomy also delivers safety benefits by removing people from an active mining environment and provides opportunities for our people to upskill.
In 2023, Thiess will begin mining operations at the new Olive Downs Complex operation in Queensland, which plans to incorporate autonomous equipment.