In SIMS - one of the largest projects in mining technology ever in Europe - leading mining companies, systems and technology suppliers and two prominent mining universities, Luleå University of Technology and Technical University of Aachen, come together to develop the mining industry.
For two days companies and researchers met at Luleå University of Technology to present the development of the various achivements of the project, but also to discuss future challenges. The three-year project is coordinated by Epiroc and has a budget of SEK 168 million. The focus is on improved mining, for example in terms of productivity, sustainability and safety.
Research that benefits
Of the eight areas of SIMS, Luleå University of Technology has the leadership of three: robotics, outreach, and attractive workplaces, and is involved in all areas.
– There is a lot happening in the mining industry regarding safety, sustainability and efficiency. Modern battery technology replaces diesel and a higher degree of automation leads to improved safety. Luleå University of Technology has research in several areas that benefit from this. It is a strength that we can involve several parts of the business in an industry-driven cutting-edge project like SIMS, Jenny Greberg, says, Associate Professor of Mining and Rock Engineering at Luleå University of Technology.
Students learn the latest technology
An important part of SIMS is for Luleå University of Technology to develop virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) technologies, and introduce this technique into courses directed at students and industry. Combined competencies from several research subjects at LTU with industry designers from Epiroc and engineers from Boliden and LKAB in a unique collaboration to develop SIMS VR mine, which will be used both as virtual demonstration platform in the project, but also in LTU courses. The work is led by Mining and rock engineering, which together with Media and Communication Science, Distributed Computer Systems and Oregeology develops the virtual mine.
– We take the mine to the students. VR technology can bring students into a mine in Australia or another part of the world. Luleå University of Technology should be at the forefront and it is important that our students can handle the very latest mining technology when they graduate, Jenny Greberg, says.