Saturday, 19 October 2019
Société Le Nickel: Digital Transformation for New Caledonia’s Leading Miner

Société Le Nickel: Digital Transformation for New Caledonia’s Leading Miner

Médéric Suon, Chief Digital Officer at Société Le Nickel (SLN), is joining Austmine in Adelaide on Thursday, 3rd October for our fourth Mining Innovation Roadshow.

This provides a unique opportunity for members to hear about SLN’s Digital Transformation Strategy, which Médéric has overseen since 2018. This transformation program is set to re-design significant processes across their business, and is investigating the use of advanced analytics, drones, robotics and predictive maintenance procedures.

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Established in 1880, SLN, a subsidiary of Eramet, is the major nickel producer of New Caledonia, with their operations consisting of four major mine sites - Thio, Kouaoua, Népoui-Kopéto and Tiébaghi – along with their large-scale process plant, Doniambo, which has been a permanent fixture in Noumea for over a century.

Whilst New Caledonia is extremely mineral rich, with over a third of the world’s estimated nickel resources found there, operators face many similar challenges across the country. This presents growth avenues for Australian METS seeking to expand in the Pacific, including those that can provide solutions around:

  • Maintenance procedures, strategy and predictive measures;
  • Facilities and workshop management;
  • Supply of skills and labour;
  • Innovative equipment and processes to de-bottleneck processing and furnace operations;
  • Sophisticated equipment that can reduce maintenance hours and manual maintenance procedures;
  • Environmental technologies to reduce impact of mining on the surrounding coral ecosystem.

Focusing on SLN, there are planned programs on the horizon of considerable importance to the local mining industry, including:

  • Construction and development of a new gas power plant;
  • Emissions reduction and recycling programs;
  • Items within their Digital Transformation Strategy, such as ‘Plant 4.0’ and a maintenance roadmap.

Hosting Médéric in Australia is part of Austmine’s ongoing aim to boost mining and METS partnerships between our two nations, which you can find more information on in this article. New Caledonia is the fourth largest nickel producer in the world and its proximity to Australia naturally boosts avenues for collaboration. This relationship has already uncovered many areas that Australian METS can assist the local mines.

Austmine is looking forward to welcoming Médéric to Australia. For more information and to register for the Adelaide Mining Innnovation Roadshow, please visit http://innovationroadshow.austmine.com.au/.

Image Credit:  Société Le Nickel

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