By Paul Moore
July 1, 2018 - Mining contractor Wolff Group is the first company in Australia to use Command for dozing, a Cat® Minestar™ offering, acquired through its long term Australian Cat dealer and partner Hastings Deering, that allows a single operator to control multiple machines from a remote operator station. The group currently has six dozers running remotely in a customer mine site, delivering consistent results and high productivity. But company leaders say the biggest benefit has been the impact on dozer operators, who sit in a comfortable operator staying safely away from the hazards of the mining environment.
The technology has seen the group achieve a 15% increase in utilization of its dozer fleet and helped the company reduce its overall operating costs. Having bought its first used D11N in 2005, Wolff gone on to have one of the largest dozer fleets in Australia, specializing in bulk pushing for overburden stripping in the mines as well as rehabilitation such as for seeding and drainage. Wolff states: “We no longer wanted to just be another earthmoving company. We actually wanted to be a technology driven earthmoving company. But most importantly we were looking at the safety aspects.”
Caterpillar states: “With multiple levels of remote control and even semi-autonomous operation, Cat® Command for dozing helps you increase operator safety and comfort — and increase the productivity of your dozer fleet. Whether you choose the over-the-shoulder remote control console or the remote operator station, your operators can have full control of the dozer without exposing themselves to dust, noise, vibration or any of the other hazards a dozer experiences. And with semi-autonomous dozing, a single operator can automate the push process for up to three dozers, dramatically increasing your fleet’s productivity.”
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