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Komatsu delivers 41 autonomous-ready trucks to the Pilbara

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Komatsu said Thursday that it will deploy 41 new Komatsu 930E-5 ultra-class haul trucks to BHP's new South Flank iron ore mine in the Pilbara region of Western Australia.

The 930E-5 model has an electric drive and is capable of carrying up to 320 U.S. tons.

The deal could net Komatsu $700 million in maintenance and support work, reported the Australian Financial Review (paywall).

BHP Billiton, the world's largest diversified miner, said on its website that South Flank will be one of the world's largest iron ore operations "...integrating the latest advances in autonomous-ready fleets, digital connectivity and modular design."

Leo Kaloglou, Komatsu Australia’s Executive General Manager – Mining, said Komatsu has 250 trucks deployed worldwide with autonomous haulage systems.

"Komatsu has 250 AHS trucks deployed and 180 operating now globally across 3 continents, across 9 mine sites, and recently became the first autonomous truck qualified to operate on private long-term evolution (LTE) mobile broadband technology in commercial operations," said Kaloglou.

"The operation of FrontRunner AHS technology has been tested across 3 different commodities in 3 of the harshest and most extreme environments in the world; in ambient temperatures of minus 45 degrees, in temperatures higher than 40 degrees and finally at extreme altitude. With over 2 billion tonnes of material moved autonomously- more than all other commercial mining autonomous haulage systems- with zero resulting injuries."

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