US Coal Miner training program achieves 12% improvements in room and pillar production

IT1aSteep declines in the price of coal have created an emphasis for existing operators to boost their productivity. A recent simulator based training initiative by an underground coal mine in the eastern region of the United States aimed at Continuous Miner Operators led to nearly one million dollars in production improvements in just 90 days. The training program targeted 16 Continuous Miner operators from eight different room and pillar mines.

Using an IM360 Advanced Equipment Simulator from Immersive Technologies an experienced operator trainer first observed the operators in the field and then operated the Continuous Miner to observe the unique conditions present at each of the mines. The trainer then developed a tailored curriculum within simulation, replicating coal tensile strength, rock bands, top height and other significant operational characteristics.

Continuous Miner operators were observed within simulation and then received coaching and instruction from the operator trainer. Once operators had met the targeted performance levels within simulation they were released back to the field.

Real world performance data was collected from the sections in which the Continuous Miner operators worked for a period of 90 days prior to training and 90 days following training to observe the rate of improvement. Real world performance was measured as Feet Per Shift (FPS) with an average improvement of 12% on Continuous Miner Operator productivity. Based off the shifts worked by each operator in the 90 days following training, their increased FPS and the profitability for the surplus production the training investment yielded a return of over USD $900,000.

“US coal mining is experiencing unprecedented pressures and achievements such as these illustrate the returns possible by investing beyond the regulatory minimum,” says Greg Karadjian, Vice President – Underground Mining Solutions, Immersive Technologies.

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About Immersive Technologies

Immersive Technologies is the world’s largest, proven and tested supplier of surface and underground Advanced Equipment Simulators to the global mining industry. The company has achieved this unique position by focusing on its mission to make every mining and earthmoving equipment operator in the world safer and their employer more profitable through its simulation technologies. Immersive Technologies’ Advanced Equipment Simulators are helping hundreds of mining companies around the world to increase their equipment operators’ safety and site profitability through effective simulation training.

Immersive Technologies provides its customers with the most effective Advanced Equipment Simulators available. This is made possible through the formal exclusive licensing and technical information alliances Immersive has established with the leading Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM), including: Caterpillar, Hitachi, Komatsu and Liebherr. These unique alliances provide Immersive Technologies with exclusive access to the OEM’s proprietary and confidential machine technical information that is required to correctly simulate the OEM’s machines and is not available through other public or dealer channels.

With advanced simulator modules deployed in 39 countries, Immersive Technologies is dedicated to provide outstanding service. To deliver on this commitment the company has customer sales and support offices located close to its customers in Perth and Brisbane Australia, Salt Lake City USA, Calgary, Ottawa & Vancouver Canada, Monterrey Mexico, Lima Peru, Santiago Chile, Bochum Germany, Johannesburg South Africa, Jakarta Indonesia, Kolkata India and Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

Immersive has the global mining experience, innovative technology, product range, OEM relationships, proven support commitment and industry vision to partner with you to ensure your simulator training solution delivers the significant results you expect.