Industry Q&A: RCT Recognised as the Leading Innovator at the Mining Prospect Awards
The 2016 Australian Mining Prospect Awards took place in Sydney on the 21st of October, recognising the achievements of companies and individuals throughout the mining industry. RCT were among the winners on the night, taking home the Innovative Mining Solution Award for their Independent Guidance Solution. Austmine sat down with RCT’s Executive Director and CEO, Brett White, to discuss the technology that was acknowledged by the judges and what makes RCT a leader in innovation.
1. Congratulations on taking home the Innovative Mining Solution Award at the 2016 Australian Mining Prospect Awards. Could you tell us a bit about the Independent Guidance Solution that you were recognised for?
The Independent Guidance solution is a feature expansion of RCT’s highly successful V3 Guidance system. It incorporates V3’s technology that controls the steering, braking and throttle, however it no longer requires prompts from the operator to select direction and cornering. Independent Guidance automatically navigates the machine on a known path by itself, avoiding walls and obstacles. This innovation has improved machine and operator performance by decreasing cycle times in the load-haul-dump process and lowering operator fatigue, thus delivering higher productivity.
2. At a time where innovation has been recognised as critical to the long-term future of the mining industry, how important is this kind of recognition for RCT?
In the Australian market RCT has long been known as a leading innovator in machine control and custom automation solutions. Receiving this award is an affirmation to our business, particularly our development teams that we are continuing to add value to our customers and remain thought leaders in our field. As RCT continues to expand its presence internationally this accolade provides the global market with an unbiased and independent assessment of our world leading technology and capability.
3. There is no doubt that innovation is core to RCT’s operations. How have RCT been able to establish an organisational culture that actively encourages the development of new ideas right through to commercialisation?
RCT was born on the commercialisation of ideas over 40 years ago. It’s in our DNA. Our success is largely born from inclusiveness, transparency and collaboration. Everyone at RCT is encouraged to propose new ideas on our internal communication forum for all to see and comment. Importantly, all ideas whether they progress or not are actioned in a timely manner. Our product brands were established and continue to evolve through close customer collaboration to ensure they are practical, cost-effective, fit-for-purpose solutions that actually solve customer problems. Indeed, this focus on customer satisfaction backed by a strong support network has helped us establish trust and long term partnerships with major mining and mining services customers who assist in the commercialisation of our new solutions.
4. Looking forward to 2017, what new innovations or improvements can we expect to see from RCT?
The mining industry is now considering technology in the planning stages of all mines and this is delivering a clear direction for the future. Machine automation, data and protection are all part of the RCT strategic development road map going forward. Data is now driving all mine operations by highlighting inefficiencies and RCT is planning to be involved in the data space to add further value to the automated machine solution. We will also be looking at moving towards driverless systems for underground loader and trucks as well as continually improving the already highly successful truck and loader solutions.