There’s no doubt big dollars can be earned driving trucks at mine sites and for mine operators that’s just one reason why self-driving trucks sound like a promising concept.
The work can also be dangerous too, and that’s an issue for drivers and operators alike to consider.
Often mines are located in areas far from any towns or cities and that means there’s a whole stack of other logistical challenges that need to be overcome.
Volvo Trucks believe then that for mining applications the future is, at least in part, self-driving trucks.
The Swedish brand has just signed agreement to supply an open mine pit in Norway with “commercial autonomous solutions” i.e. self-driving trucks.
The six autonomous Volvo FH trucks will be put to work on a five-kilometre stretch through tunnels between the mine itself and the crusher.
“This is an important step for us,” says Raymond Langfjord, Managing Director of the mine.
“The competition in the industry is tough. We are continuously looking to increase our efficiency and productivity long-term, and we have a clear vision of taking advantage of new opportunities in technology and digital solutions.
“We were searching for a reliable and innovative partner that shares our focus on sustainability and safety.
“Going autonomous will greatly increase our competitiveness in a tough global market.”
Check out the trucks in action here:
What do you think? Is this the future? Or will human beings still be needed for anything more than just the simplest operations?
We’d love to know what you think about self-driving trucks in the comments section below.
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