Modern Tire Dealer

JUN 2018

Magazine for the professional tire industry

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Page 66 of 87

65 w w w . M o d e r n T i r e D e a l e r . c o m M ost of us know about the industrial revolu- tion, but not too many of us realize that we're h e a d i n g t ow a r d t h e fourth industrial revolution. At this year's Tire Industry Associa- tion Off-the-Road Tire Conference, Chris Rhoades, senior product manager for BKT USA Inc., not only explained what the fourth industrial revolution is, but also how com- panies could provide value to it as it relates to the mining industry. Roughly speaking, the first industrial revolution took place in the late 1700s. It was brought about by steam, water and mechanical production equipment. e second revolution took place in the late 1800s with the invention of electricity and mass production. We're currently in the third industrial revolution that started sometime in the late 1960s with digitalization. According to the World Economic Forum's Professor Klaus Schwab in his book "e Fourth Industrial Revolution," the next revolution will be characterized by a range of new technologies that fuse physical, digital and biological worlds together, impacting economies and industries, even challenging ideas about what it means to be human. Put in simpler terms, it is the use of robotics, virtual reality and artificial intelligence. Rhoades, who told attendees that he comes from a family deeply rooted in coal mining, going back 155 years, used a few analogies to make his point about providing value. Rhoades said that one year's production of coal from the entire state of Kentucky in the early 1800s was 328 tons. Today, that amounts to one load of a CAT 797 or Komatsu 930 haul truck. In looking at the history of mining trucks, their hauling capacity and the tires they used, Rhoades was able to point out that not much has changed since 1998, the year the Caterpillar Model 797 was introduced with 63-inch tires and a payload of 400 tons. Rhoades said the advancements in equip- ment have come from digitizing — sensors and GPS; dispatch; truck spotting; TPMS; and utilizing object avoidance technology. As an example, the Rio Tinto mine in Australia is expected to expand its autonomous truck fleet by 50% by 2019 and has already moved its one billionth ton. e use of autonomous haul trucks has led Rio Tinto to increase its hours by 1,000 with a reduction of 15% in load cost/unit. Rhoades quoted Hitachi's Atsushi Konishi, managing director, "ere are large mining companies that are looking at Australia to implement new digital technologies in order to then replicate them in other regions of the world. Embracing smart technology including digitization and IoT (Internet of ings) in the mining industry is imperative for Australia to maintain its leadership position." e World Economic Forum is projecting a digital transformation in the mining and metals industry to be a roughly $400 billion opportunity. is is a much higher value than is projected for the rest of society. e reason is the impact by integrated platforms, connected workers and remote operations centers that will account for over 60% of this figure. Rhoades explained that the transforma- tion for those servicing and maintaining tires is progressing as well. In 1996, the original TPMS system was introduced to the industry. He said TPMS only worked if companies were already working on air pressure maintenance programs. Today, companies are using TPMS and job site studies to further extend the life of tires. As Rhoades phrased it, "we're talking about safety, digitization, maintenance and speed, which equals productivity." Rhoades said the industry has already been tracking a tremendous amount of data about tires, but wondered whether the industry has been using it correctly. "We've created a lot of data, but have we created as much value? Are we handing reports to customers? Are we automating it with dashboards? Who is telling the story?" Rhoades said as the industry moves forward, it must better understand how to measure a tire's total quantified life. Rhoades said it is easy to calculate cost/hour, but analyzing all of the variables to create a more accurate, automated tire management solution is far more challenging, but it will be the direction the industry is headed as it enters the fourth industrial revolution. ■ Gearing up for the 4 th industrial revolution Greg Smith By F o c u s o n I n d u s t r y HOW WILL ROBOTICS, VIRTUAL REALITY AND AI AFFECT OUR INDUSTRY? Chris Rhoades drove home a point about mine safety by showing his father's hard hat that was worn during his 31 years of mining. PHOTO BY TIA/PETER KUHN

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