News & Analysis

Automated road-train solution partnership

7th December 2021
James Anstee

Hexagon’s Autonomy & Positioning and Mining divisions has announced the development of an automated road-train solution with leading mining services company, Mineral Resources Limited (MRL). To be deployed on MRL’s haulage fleet, the solution integrates drive by-wire technology with an autonomous management system to orchestrate vehicle movement in road-train haulage. 

The automated road-train solution focuses on safety, productivity and sustainability for MRL operations and will be phased in over the next two years.

Both companies are confident that progressive automation will profoundly change the safety and economics of mining where macroeconomic challenges, including commodity prices and labour shortages, impact the feasibility of projects.

The automated road-train solution improves the safety of long-range haulage, provides cost-efficiencies and reduces emissions to assist companies in lowering their carbon footprint. Beyond mining, this innovative solution will also benefit bulk haulage in many other off-road primary industries. 

“Autonomous vehicles are revolutionizing the way we work today and into the future, and Hexagon is very proud to be part of this revolution,” said Ola Rollén, President and CEO of Hexagon. “Our agreement with MRL further solidifies Hexagon’s commitment to autonomous mobility and fulfilling our customer’s safety and productivity requirements.”

This announcement follows a successful proof-of-concept completed with the specific economic constraints of iron ore and other bulk commodities, claims the company. MRL provided their deep expertise and knowledge in road-train haulage while Hexagon, a global leader in digital reality solutions, drew upon their proven experience in autonomy.

MRL’s Mining Services Chief Executive Mike Grey commented, “MRL is a leading provider of innovative and sustainable mining services and we continuously seek ways to improve productivity, efficiency and safety across the mining supply chain through new technologies; these automated road-trains are no exception.”

“They will enhance the safety and operational efficiency of our long-distance road-train haulage fleet, reducing the risks of driver fatigue and increasing fleet availability,” Grey added. “This autonomous technology will complement our wide range of innovative mining service solutions.”

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