By: Boston Consulting Group
How will technology impact the mining industry?
According to a report by Boston Consulting Group, mining in the not-too-distant future won’t look all that different from something out of, say, I, Robot or Battlestar Galactica. Robots will be shuttled to outer space, where they will mine asteroids.
Here on Earth, self-organizing robot swarms will explore and extract ore, while other swarms crush and leach it underground, with minimal environmental impact. Even more fantastic, robots created through 4D printing will be dispatched in flat form to the mine site, where they’ll self-assemble once exposed to air. Meanwhile, engineers will monitor all this activity from the comfort of their offices, located hundreds or thousands of miles away.
To coincide with the Mining Indaba, the consulting firm released a report on The New Technology Frontier in Mining.
The report provides insight and solutions to the following:
- Mining stands at the verge of a new technology frontier and will affect all elements of the value chain (making what we do today better, cheaper, faster, safer)
- Aside from affecting the value chain, new technology may even challenge the composition of the value chain altogether (disrupting the value chain)
- Companies need to bridge the way from ‘the mine of today’ to ‘the mine of the future’
- This transformation is big, but should be tackled step-by-step: The best way to get there is through technology pilots, that (1) show business value on operational level and (2) fit into an overarching vision