Location: South America
Outcome: Increased Service Accuracy from 70% to >95%
An open pit mining operation in South America engaged Mine Tech Services to assist with their monitoring, planning and execution of Preventive Maintenance (PM) services. The site used Service Accuracy as one of the performance metrics; in short, are the PMs planned and executed when they should be according to the targets and allowable tolerances set by the OEMs.
The primary goal of the project was to assist the team to improve their service accuracy performance. This improvement would have positive impacts in several other areas including parts/tools availability, ability to consolidate stoppage, greater confidence for production planning.
1. Integrate and automate SMU Hours feed with the asset management system
The site operated an asset management system by RPM Global, AMT, which contained the required services, job content and service planning elements. However, it relied on manual entry of SMU Hours to enable accurate forecasting, which was prone to intermittent entry and human error. This led to sub-optimal forecasting.
The mobile mining fleet was predominantly Caterpillar and Hitachi, and they operated Cat MineStar Health as part of their asset management strategy. The smaller assets used for construction and support work were fitted with Product Link devices which could capture and send onboard data. Both systems are capable of reporting various information including SMU hours.
MTS set up the required connections from both systems to collect the SMU Hours at regular intervals and automatically send to AMT. The manual entry was stopped for any assets fitted with reporting IOT devices.
2. PM Accuracy Dashboard
Although AMT was in place users needed to have access and training to use this system effectively. Reviewing which PMs were in progress, not due or overdue at a glance was not readily available.
MTS worked with the site to design a simple but effective dashboard showing the progress to the next PM. It also included indicators if the asset was already on a PM service, as well a predicted date for the next PM based on asset utilisation. Various existing data sources were integrated and automated which avoided any additional manual work by the teams.
This was placed within the sites Rotodash landing page set which was displayed on rotation in a variety of locations including the planning office.
Everybody from the Service Planners to the Production Superintendent were able to quickly read and understand the status of the PM services.
The increased visibility of the PMs, as well as the more effective use of AMT, enabled the team and supporting functions to greatly improve the Service Accuracy performance. As the hour entry and PM planning process was more automated it also reduced the man-hours required, allowing the planning team to focus efforts on other priority tasks.
The below illustrates when the solutions were developed and deployed, and the change management process was started with the teams. Within 6 months the site was able to achieve and maintain a world class average of>95% for their truck fleet. This positively impacted the overall availability of the fleet.
Additionally, as the accuracy improved, other functions used this to plan more effectively. The condition monitoring team would consolidate onboard troubleshooting and diagnostics, if possible, to these PM stoppages where historically they may have stopped the machine. Also, the production team were more confident of when assets would be removed from them for servicing.
Based on the successes of this project the site looked for further solutions with MTS to predict other service activities the planned component change outs (PCRs). This focussed on an increased set of parameters including SMU Hours, fuel consumption and asset condition.
MTS delivered considerable improvements in a short execution time. This was due to the combination of in-depth asset health and maintenance planning knowledge as well as the ability to access and automate the required data.
This case study demonstrates how a focussed project can quickly result in significantly increased performance.
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