Komatsu to teleoperate excavator in Arizona from MINExpo

By |  September 10, 2021
The Komatsu PC7000 excavator here tests loading capabilities at the company's proving grounds in Arizona. Photo: Komatsu

The Komatsu PC7000 excavator here tests loading capabilities at the company’s proving grounds in Arizona. Photo: Komatsu

Komatsu will teleoperate a new hydraulic excavator loading its autonomous concept truck in Arizona from a remote console in Las Vegas during MINExpo International 2021.

Separated by more than 400 miles, Komatsu says the PC7000-11 and its operator will leverage an Immersive Technologies console that provides the user information and views of what is seen from the machine’s actual cab on-site. Multiple cameras and sensors around the machine and bucket, as well as a 360-degree monitor and machine display, support visibility and situational awareness for the remote operator, Komatsu says.

Development of the semiautonomous 700-ton-class hydraulic excavator with teleoperation is nearing completion, the company adds, and Komatsu plans to trial the concept machine at a customer site in 2022.

The live demonstrations at MINExpo offer a sneak peek of the company’s upcoming offerings to the market, Komatsu adds. The equipment will be operating at Komatsu’s proving grounds near Tucson, Arizona.

Paired with Komatsu’s autonomous haulage system, the PC7000-11 features semi-automated teleoperation capabilities to reduce cycle times and combat operator fatigue. Operator-assist with augmented reality technology supports productivity improvement, displaying information and data to provide real-time feedback.

Leveraging the machine’s onboard sensors and technologies of Modular Mining and Immersive Technologies, Komatsu says each loading shift is accumulated in the data and translated into insights on ways to potentially improve productivity, safety and reduce running costs. The data is incorporated into online real-time coaching, as well as offline coaching. An operator guidance and coaching function is also under development utilizing augmented reality technology.

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