Autonomous trucks mark 1 billion tonnes milestone
Caterpillar said yesterday that its fleet of trucks at Fortescue Metals Group (FMG) iron ore mine in Western Australia moved 1 billion tonnes (1.1 billion tons) of material.
The autonomous haulage trucks traveled more than 33.5 million kilometers and were 30% productive than past practices.
"Command trucks respond to calls to the shovel, move into position, haul to dump points and even report for maintenance â?? all without an operator on board," wrote Caterpillar in a news release. "Autonomous trucks operate safely around other equipment, light vehicles and personnel. Trucks maintain optimal operating speeds and safe following distances at all times, and mines are able to optimize production thanks to tight truck exchanges and no need for shift changes."
Fortescue began implementing Cat's autonomous haulage technology in 2012. There are now 137 autonomous trucks in operation at the iron ore mine.