International Collaboration Drives Charge On Results

Austmine welcomes the announcement of the winning solution concepts for the global Charge On Innovation Challenge. The eight innovators selected are ABB, Ampcontrol and Tritium (Australia), BluVein XL, DB Engineering & Consulting with Echion Technologies, Hitachi, Shell Consortium, Siemens Off-board power supply, and 3ME BladeVolt.

“Five of the eight solutions come from Austmine members, so we are very pleased with the results,” said Chris Gibbs Stewart. CEO of Austmine. “It is also great to see that the leading innovators are not only from the big end of town, but include smaller regionally based companies. Congratulations to Austmine Members ABB, Ampcontrol, Hitachi, Siemens and 3ME, and all those involved as it was a very competitive process with a game changing intent, aimed at tackling one of mining’s biggest challenges.”

“This type of challenge and the results achieved herald in a new level of international collaboration aimed at accelerating the development and adoption of innovation. There is no doubt it will be used as a model to continue to solve the big issues our industry is facing.”

Austmine has been involved in the Charge On Innovation Challenge since February 2021 and was appointed as the initial facilitator by BHP because of its work on BHP’s Supplier Innovation Program. In collaboration with BHP, Vale and Rio Tinto, Austmine was responsible for setting up the challenge framework, recruiting all the patron mining companies, promoting the challenge globally and facilitating the judging process.

Dr Robert Trzebski, Director of International Business, Austmine led the project for Austmine and has been involved since its inception over a year ago. “This has been a very exciting project to be involved in and often referred to as a true industry phenomenon. We never imagined 21 global mining companies would come onboard and work together so seamlessly. When I approached mining companies to get involved, the sell was not difficult as they saw the benefit of the collaboration in the open-innovation space right away.”

“On the other side, we wanted the best solutions possible, and we put out the call far and wide. We worked with such industries as mining, aerospace, EV automotive, battery producers, defence from 31 countries and received interest from over 350 vendor companies. Eighty (80) vendor companies submitted their conceptual solutions and 21 companies were then invited to present a detailed pitch of their solution. The final eight were chosen from these 21 companies.”

“When deployed, these solutions will significantly help to decarbonise mining operations. It is an exciting step forward towards the electrification of large haul trucks on open-pit mine sites and this work could have flow on effects into other industries. The other exciting part about this project is that we have built up a lot of goodwill right across the globe as in particular mining companies have seen the value in this type of collaboration. We look forward to leading other significant challenges of this type to benefit our industry and showcase Australia’s highly innovative METS sector.”

GHD joined the Charge On Innovation Challenge as the technical facilitator and instrumentally contributed towards the creation of the consortia of vendors. GHD is now embarked on the journey of driving the consortia to test testing of preferred technologies among the mining companies, vendors, OEMs and interested investors.

Austmine is the leading not-for-profit industry association for the Australian Mining Equipment, Technology and Services (METS) sector with over 600 members nationally. The project contributes to Austmine’s goal of championing the Australian METS sector as global innovation leader and providing growth opportunities to members.