Leica Geosystems Mining and Locata Corp are extending their exclusive technology partnership in the mine machine automation and mine fleet management market until the end of June 2014. The extension guarantees the ongoing, commercial provision to the global mining industry of the Leica Jigsaw Positioning System (Jps), powered by Locata technology. This comes on the back of a huge body of work, which has resulted in the first successful operational deployment of the Leica Jps network. The ground-breaking technology at the core of the Leica Jps is a combination of the ‘Local Constellation’ (pioneered by Locata and adopted by the US Air Force), and Leica Geosystems’ technology portfolio.The co-developed Leica Jps network is the only high precision (HP) solution in the world that augments standard RTK GPS/GLONASS signals with Locata signals, ensuring no positioning signal loss or machine down-time – even against highwalls or in the deepest open-pit mines.Haydn Roberts, CEO, Leica Geosystems Mining: “Through this partnership, the Jigsaw Positioning System (Jps) will continue to meet and exceed industry expectations. In being available to augment any GPS/GNSS network on any site, we are truly providing a new capability for mining applications, enabling them to operate with unprecedented signal up time and benefit from the huge associated financial return. And we know it works – we have the data.“Through Jps we offer autonomy from sole reliance on satellite-based positioning networks. In accordance with Leica Geosystems Mining strategy, our technology for machine automation and now HP RTK positioning is completely OEM independent. No longer will machines stop work while waiting for the elusive satellite signal to reconnect. The Jps will seamlessly augment the signals, no matter on what machine, on what system, in what fleet.”Nunzio Gambale, CEO and co-founder of Locata: “Locata is truly delighted to extend, for a further two years, the global exclusive rights Leica Geosystems has to integrate and sell our revolutionary technology into the mining market. They deserve this extension. Haydn Roberts runs a team that is talented, experienced and motivated. They have proven to us many times over that they are some of the finest GPS engineers in the world.”The success of the combined technologies and continued relationship between both parties ensures the Leica Jigsaw Positioning System will be commercially available to the mining industry globally from August this year.
Boart Longyear has introduced the new S250-M3 rock drill. “The S250-M3’s advanced noise suppression and lower vibration represents a significant improvement over the existing S250 rock drill,” the company says. This advancement improves drilling production and decreases the fatigue to ears, hands, and feet. The main airflow cylinder channel and the exhaust of the S250-M3 have been engineered to allow for efficient actuation of the drill. The new design drives more of the drill’s energy to the face of the rock, which reduces vibration and the amount of energy the driller’s body has to absorb.“A drill operator stated that it was the first time he could feel his hands and feet after using a rock drill for a full shift,” said John Nielson, global product manager at Boart Longyear. “The S250-M3 reduces the noise level by 6 decibels, which results in half the noise.”When compared to the leading competition, the S250-M3 showed a 50 percent reduction in noise level, 39 percent increase in torque, and a gain of over 6 inches in penetration per minute at 110 PSI. The components of the S250-M3 also experience less wear due to the decreased vibration, which allows the drill to operate longer without repair and reduces rebuild costs.The S250-M3 comes in three primary variations to match specific customer needs — jackleg, stoper and sinker. The drill hex chuck ends are available in both 22 mm and 25 mm.Safety is incorporated into the design process of all Boart Longyear products and the S250-M3’s noise suppression and lower vibration result in less user fatigue. Boart Longyear also recommends a comprehensive hearing conservation program to effectively deal with elevated noise levels.