BY ELIZABETH FABRI
FORTESCUE Metals Group (FMG) will add more autonomous trucks to its fleet in FY18 as part of the company’s strategy to improve safety, productivity and efficiency across its Pilbara operations.
Announced on 27 June, the FY18 innovation projects included converting up to 12 793F trucks to autonomous haulage technology (AHS) at Solomon Hub, the rollout of AHS across the Chichester Hub project, a relocatable overland conveyor trial at Cloudbreak mine, and IT network upgrades at Cloudbreak and Christmas Creek.
Fortescue said about 100 haul trucks would be converted to AHS at the Chichester Hub to deliver on the 20 per cent productivity improvements recorded at Solomon since the company’s deployment of 56 AHS vehicles from 2012.
The investment in the new technologies would occur over a three year period, with partial benefits to be realised during FY18 and full benefits in the financial years that follow.
Fortescue chief executive Nev Power said the company was continuing to introduce leading-edge technology, such as AHS, across its business to ensure it remained at the lowest end of the global cost curve.
“Our focus remains on improving safety and increasing productivity and efficiency to deliver ongoing cost reductions,” Mr Power said.
“These projects will encompass technological advancement, workforce skills development and collaboration with our suppliers to harness the best ideas and position Fortescue strongly for the future.”