Sierra Leone Telegraph: 26 October 2019:
Russian companies are offering robots, unmanned trucks and solutions based on the Industrial Internet of Things and Artificial Intelligence to African countries, to help improve productivity and boost export revenue.
The offer was made by the Russians on Thursday at the Russia-Africa summit and economic forum in Sochi during a panel discussion entitled: ‘The mining industry in Africa: new Russian technologies and high efficiency’.
Foday Rado Yokie – Sierra Leone’s minister of mines (Photo), took part in the discussions.
Also present were the representatives of ZYFRA (Finnish/Russian company), Alrosa (Russia), Chetra (Russia), Maximus Mining and General Maniema Mining Company from the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
“We are offering the African continent an automated mining and transport management system and robotic technologies,” said the CEO of ZYFRA, Igor Bogachev.
“The system of production control allows us to improve the efficiency of the mine fleet and optimize ore production and transportation, increasing mining volume by 15%. The robotic trucks performance is 20% higher than that of the usual technology.
“The dump truck driver is turned into the control centre operator. He can handle seven trucks simultaneously. Our autonomous dump trucks are already operational in Russia and Morocco,” Igor Bogachev said.
Dr. David Francis – Chief Minister of Sierra Leone, said that a country-wide aerial survey of geological resources has recently been conducted.
“We now know the approximate volume and quantities of mineral resources that our country possesses. We know that Russia has accumulated the knowledge and experience to help Sierra Leone evaluate all the information, enabling us to verify and confirm the amount, type and estimated value of the natural resources,” Said Francis (Photo).
The participants agreed that traditional means of mining mineral deposits are becoming increasingly expensive, with productivity falling due to technical maintenance costs, unreliable equipment, reactive troubleshooting, a lower equipment utilization coefficient and accidents connected to the transgression of safety regulations.
“The remote controlled mining technologies are effective in raising the safety level of works. They allow us to increase the company’s productivity,” added Mr Bogachev.
According to the Head of General Maniema Mining Company, George Oyema, an improvement to safety and productivity “satisfies the interests of the labor unions, the employers, the owners and, ultimately, the state. It also increases the productivity of the industry in a safe way.”
The Russia-Africa summit and economic forum took place this week in Sochi, Russia on 23–24 October 2019, where Heads of African states, representatives of Russian, African and international business, state structures and representatives of integration unions of the African continent, took part in wide ranging discussions about how best to improve economic relations between Russia and African countries.
Africa is one of the global leaders in resourcing and producing various raw materials and fuels, over 90% of which are exported.
The mineral industry is key to the industrial potential and export of many African countries. Almost 75% of foreign investment is destined for the mining industry.
ZYFRA develops industrial digitalization technologies, invests in the products and develops the Industrial Internet of Things and the artificial intelligence environment. The company’s main industry sectors are mechanical engineering, metallurgy, mining, the oil and gas industry and the chemical industry.
ZYFRA’s solutions are implemented at 70 quarries, including those belonging to global large-scale companies such as Norilsk Nickel, Severstal, Polyus, Polymetal and ArcelorMittal.
The company operates in over 10 countries, including India, Russia, China, Turkey, Chile, Peru, Morocco and Finland.