Skills solution

IF THE operator is lacking in the skills, get the machine to compensate. That is the approach Komatsu is taking with some of its earthmoving machines.
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Drone technology is one of the add-ons to Komatsu's Intelligent Machine Control system.

Noel Dyson

While the technology is aimed at construction-sized machines at the moment it is an indication of what could be coming in the mining space.

Called Intelligent Machine Control the technology is designed to let operators focus on moving material efficiently without have into worry about over-excavation or damaging the target surface.

The IMC covers a range of four dozers and one excavator. Each model in Komatsu’s IMC range incorporates, as standard, a factory-installed fully-integrated three dimensional global navigation satellite system machine control system.

Komatsu Australia technology solution expert team manager Aaron Marsh, said the company was working towards enhancing and improving operator productivity.

“IMC allows contractors to complete bulk dozing and excavation, along with grading and final trim operations faster and to closer tolerances with fewer passes to achieve finish grades or excavation profiles,” he said.

“It allows far more efficient machine use and less rework – just dig or grade it once then move on.

“In addition, because all 3D design data is held within an IMC machine, we can greatly decrease times required for staking, survey and even final inspection, as well as allowing contractors to complete multiple tasks with one machine.”

There is even a drone offering thrown in.

EVOX3x 3D mapping drones can be used for survey and site management through the Skycatch cloud platform.

“This technology delivers quick, reliable and accurate survey for all earthmoving, quarry and mining applications, adding value to our integrated IMC operations,” Marsh said.

“It allows for unprecedented visibility into work site progress.

“In addition to being integrated into our IMC technology offerings it is also capable of working alongside Komatsu’s Autonomous Haulage Systems.”