Bis and Israel Aerospace Industries announce joint venture
Global Mining Review | September 21, 2020
Bis and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) has recently announced a joint venture (JV) to deliver the next generation of mine site automation to the global resources sector.
“The Auto-mate JV represents a significant advancement in mining automation,” said Bis CEO, Brad Rogers. “The flexible and scalable solution is the ultimate partner in mining automation, delivering superior technology, to a wider range of miners, at a lower cost.”
The 50/50 JV uses IAI’s proven technology, which has been operating in heavy off-road vehicles in remote and harsh environments since the early 1980s.
Offering fully-scalable and adaptable levels of automation, Auto-mate’s technology is tailored to each mine site’s requirements. With an open architecture model, the system connects any asset to the operation’s fleet management system, regardless of brand, age or type of asset or desired level of automation.
“Auto-mate is a game-changer because of its exceptional utility,” Rogers said. “It is a gateway to automation for small and big miners. It is uniquely flexible so that a customer can choose how far down the pathway to automation they want to go. It is asset agnostic. It can be deployed at any mine, on any asset and to any degree of automation the customer chooses.
“From today, automation will be accessible by a larger section of the mining industry because the Auto-mate technology platform, created by IAI, allows miners to automate any asset, and retain long term optionality on fleet decisions.”
Rogers added that the global value uplift and efficiency gains from automation in the resource sector had been estimated at more than US$50 billion which represented a significant international opportunity for the Auto-mate partners.
“Auto-mate makes automation a reality at mines where it would previously never have been thought possible,” he said. “It can be delivered efficiently and at a lower whole of life cost than other technologies in the market.”
Bis is renowned for delivering innovative haulage and equipment solutions to mining customers for over 100 years. IAI is a large, advanced engineering company with a 20 000-strong workforce, 5000 of whom are engineers with world-class expertise in robotics and automation. IAI have been designing and deploying robotic and autonomous vehicle and asset solutions for air, sea and land for over 40 years, and have automated over 35 different asset classes.
Rogers said the JV was an important strategic initiative for the company.
“As a trusted resource logistics partner, we identified a gap in the market for flexible automation technology that offered greater interoperability to our customers,” he commented. “We’re extremely pleased to have forged a partnership with IAI to become their global partner for this industry first in mining automation.”
IAI subsidiary ELTA’ CEO, Yoav Tourgeman, said the interoperable scalable system was the perfect union of cutting-edge technology and practical application.
“Auto-mate delivers a flexible approach to automation, delivering usability for multiple levels of automation across all haulage assets and ancillary equipment, with one central command centre,” Tourgeman said.
With more than 20 years’ experience in the global energy and min-ing sectors, Auto-Mate CEO Daniel Poller is well-placed to lead the launch of the joint venture.
“Auto-mate is set to make a significant impact on the mining and automation sector and will ultimately enhance safety and efficiency outcomes for our customers,” Poller added. “I am thrilled that we are able to bring it to the global market.”
Rogers said the Auto-mate JV was a significant step in Bis’ commitment to customer-led innovation.
“Auto-mate is a compelling commitment to innovation and disruption in the mining and automation sector to deliver new solutions to our customers which drive value at their operations,” he said. “This is just the latest in a series of innovations to emerge from the Bis development pipeline, following the development of the ground-breaking mine haulage vehicle, Rexx, and cutting-edge underground grader, Razor.”
The combination of IAI’s leading capability in autonomous technology solutions and Bis’ demonstrated experience in mine site logistics and supply chain management delivers the perfect combination of experience to Auto-mate.