Zyfra Group to help coal mining giant SUEK implement automated production management system

As part of a program for digitalisation of production processes in the Coal Division of JSC SUEK, a project was launched to introduce an automated production management system based on end-to-end management processes for mining and processing. The Tugnuisky mining operation in Buryatia was chosen as a pilot site. As a result of the project, it is expected to achieve cost optimisation in all areas of the production process, including increasing the productivity of mine transport by 4%, as well as upping process efficiency, reducing downtime of mining equipment, as well as predicting the technical readiness of equipment, maintaining systematic accounting and quality control coal at unloading points, and using the capabilities of digital advisers.

The project is being implemented on the basis of the solutions of the Zyfra Group of Companies, with the support of the Russian Foundation for the Development of Information Technologies (RFRIT). The uniqueness of the implemented production management model lies in the combination of the control system for the mining and transport complex ACS GTK ‘Karyer’ V8 and the software and hardware complex for managing production and technological data – the Unified Dispatching and Analytical Centre (EDAC) – based on an IIoT platform.

The complex introduction of these technologies in the coal industry within the framework of one project will happen for the first time. The linkage of the automated control system of the State Customs Committee ‘Karyer’ and the EDAC will allow full automation of the management of mining operations and the processing plant and also will provide an end-to-end informatisation process and traceability of the mined coal from the open cut to the shipment of finished products.

“The project allows you to take the current basic automation of the enterprise to a new level, with the growth of complex functions, such as optimization of the operation of mining and transport equipment, digital advisers, end-to-end planning ‘cut-factory’ and much more, as well as create a single point of data collection necessary for decision-making” said Irina Vlasova, Director for Automation and Digitalisation of the Coal Division of JSC SUEK. The expected effect will be achieved through the introduction of key modules of the system, namely the ‘optimisation module’ and the ‘cut-factory’ planning module at the second and third stages of the project. “The implemented system combines many advanced science-intensive technologies, such as Big Data, IIoT, AI, and we also see great potential in the use of digital adviser technology, which allows us to quickly make the most effective management decisions.2

The project is designed to be deployed in three stages and will be implemented in the period from 2022 to 2024. Denis Semenikhin, Head of Digital Technologies Development of the Coal Division of JSC SUEK, commented. “The first stage involves the introduction of a new version of the ACS GTK ‘Karyer’ V8 platform with its basic functionality and control of the operation of mining and transport equipment, as well as a single dispatch centre, followed by setting up the collection of data coming from the automated control system of the GTK ‘Karyer’ V8”.

The resulting array of data will be used to monitor the operation of equipment in real time. The second stage includes the refinement of the system in terms of management functions, monitoring the operation of the factory, and the introduction of a laboratory test management system. The most interesting from the point of view of the economic effect is the optimisation module, which allows SUEK to increase the productivity of the mining and transport complex by at least 4% due to the automatic calculation of the needs of equipment when managing the GTK.

At the third stage, an application service will be introduced to monitor the impact of the quality of coal entering the factory on its efficiency, as well as digital advisors for real-time process control and the Razrez-Fabrika operational planning system. All of the above activities will ensure the adoption of effective decisions within the production processes by providing a single point of access for multivariate analysis of information with the subsequent transfer of consolidated production data to enterprise-level systems.

The joint project implemented by Zyfra and SUEK with the involvement of state funding will allow testing technologies that can significantly increase the efficiency of mining and processing stages. “The new system will ensure the transparency of production processes, as well as increase the level of digitalisation of the company. It should also be noted that modern technologies, as a rule, have a significant impact on the level of sustainable development of the company and provide competitive advantages in the long term,” said Ilya Izmailov, Director for Business Transformation of Zyfra Group. “In addition, the flexibility of the solution implies a short time for finalising the functionality of the system in accordance with new business needs.”

The system will provide centralised collection and analysis of information from all equipment connected to it using integrated modules: automated control system of the State Customs Committee ‘Karyer’ V8, industrial Internet of Things platforms – Zyfra IIOT Platform, Zyfra Industrial Automation Kit and Zyfra Industrial Digitalization Kit.