Ottawa, ON – February 18, 2015 – Neptec Technologies Corp., a developer of intelligent 3D robotic vision solutions for real-time machine automation in harsh environments, today announced the successful proof-of-concept testing of its 3DRi Spot Assist application at Teck’s Fording River Coal Mine. Developed in collaboration with Barrick, Teck Resources, and Peck Tech Consulting Ltd., 3DRi Spot Assist is a sensor-based software application that uses Neptec’s 3DRi (3D Real-time intelligence) software development platform and obscurant-penetrating OPAL 3D laser sensors to improve the productivity and safety of operations in the loading area of open-pit mines.
“Backing up a haul truck beside a shovel for loading is a challenging task at the best of times and a system that improves the efficiency and safety of shovel and haul truck interactions offers potentially huge productivity gains for mining operations,” said Peter Wan, Teck’s Principal Advisor on Mining Technology.
3DRi Spot Assist uses multiple OPAL 3D sensors mounted on the shovel together with a single computer running the 3DRi SDK and Spot Assist software application to continuously scan the loading area around the shovel and recognize and track haul trucks as they prepare to spot beside the shovel for loading. The application calculates the optimal loading position beside the shovel, determines a valid path for the haul truck to back up into that position, and provides the haul truck driver with cues on a display in the truck during the spotting manoeuvre. The system supports single and double-sided loading configurations. It also alerts the shovel and haul truck operators to obstacles that may appear in the path, and reports on spotting efficiency to assist with operator training and benchmarking.
“Decreased productivity and increasing high costs in the mining industry require us to innovate, it is no longer an option,” said Andrew Scott, Barrick’s Senior Director of Mining Information Technology and Automation. “While full automation is the long-term goal, we can see many possible applications of Neptec’s 3DRi and OPAL technologies to create intelligent, real-time 3D solutions that help our operators perform complex tasks more efficiently and with less risk.”
“We are most fortunate to have the support and guidance of our customers and industry partners like Peck Tech. 3DRi Spot Assist is but the first of a portfolio of 3DRi productivity solutions we are rolling out for our mining customers,” added Mike Sekerka, CEO of Neptec Technologies Corp.
About Neptec Technologies Corp.
Neptec Technologies Corp. develops innovative 3D robotic vision systems for real-time machine automation in harsh environments that improve the productivity, safety and cost effectiveness of its clients’ operations. The company was founded in 2011 to commercialize space technologies developed by Neptec Design Group Ltd., an award-winning NASA prime contractor. Neptec is developing intelligent operator-assist and machine automation solutions based on its 3DRi (3D Real-time intelligence) software development kit (SDK) and dust-penetrating OPAL 3D laser scanners for clients in the mining, oil and gas and defence industries. The company is located in Kanata, Ontario. For more information, visit www.neptectechnologies.com and Neptec Technologies channel on YouTube.com.
About Barrick Gold Corporation
Barrick is the gold industry leader. Based in Toronto, the company operates mines and advanced exploration and development projects on four continents. Shares are traded on the Toronto and New York stock exchanges under the symbol ABX. The company has been ranked as a world leader in social and environmental responsibility for five consecutive years by the Dow Jones Sustainability Index, and is also listed on the NASDAQ Global Sustainability Index of the top 100 companies, and Corporate Knights Magazine’s Global 100 list of the world’s most sustainable companies. For more information, visit www.barrick.com.
About Teck Resources Limited
Teck is a diversified resource company committed to responsible mining and mineral development with major business units focused on copper, steelmaking coal, zinc and energy. Headquartered in Vancouver, Canada, its shares are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbols TCK.A and TCK.B and the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol TCK. Further information about Teck can be found at www.teck.com.
About Peck Tech Consulting Ltd.
Peck Tech Consulting Ltd. is the leading industry resource to rapidly assist customers to define the most viable and complete technology solution and strategy that delivers tangible and measurable outcomes related to higher overall health and safety as well as enhanced performance and productivity. Combined, Peck Teck employees and associates offer 100 years of project consulting and development experience and innovation derived from working on technology product development and deployment on production and exploration drills, electric cable shovels, hydraulic excavators, haul trucks and drag lines. More information is available at www.pecktech.ca.