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Podcast: Life Of Mine – Underground Technology with Goldfields Australia

2 Mins read

Matt Michael, could be called a jack of all trades across the local mining landscape! He could cover engineering, business problem solving or operate any piece of modern equipment for you at your underground mining project. He currently earns his keep as a jumbo operator, and in his spare time he runs the ever growing Life Of Mine Podcast. Maybe you could even employ him as your Media or Marketing Officer into the future?!

I will be conducting a Q + A with Matt in the New Year. I think his almost unique blend of education and front line operations experience will no doubt deliver interesting points for followers of

I was fortunate enough to feature in one of his earlier podcasts, where we covered my diagnosis with testicular cancer whilst working underground, as well as my journey within the industry. It was great experiencing the recording process, and it was awesome that Matt followed up with a separate episode with Cancer Council WA.

In Matt’s latest release he chats with two of Gold Fields Australia’s top innovators in the underground mining space. Andrew Bywater (GM at Granny Smith) and Richard Butcher (Vice President – Technical), chat with Matt about their drive to push new ideas and implementation of some of the latest underground mining technology seen in Australia.

They cover some big picture topics in this 90 minute podcast in an educating, yet light hearted episode. For those exploring new technologies or looking to improve their wider industry knowledge, this underground mining focused podcast is a must listen!

Newtrax personnel monitoring (a device I covered in the earlier cap lamp feature), has been fully delivered to Gold Fields’ Granny Smith project and has given the team a great result with improved tracking of underground workers. They then cover Mobilaris, which Bywater describes as “the Google Maps for underground”, which utilities on the fly mapping and vehicle interaction warnings. It would appear Granny Smiths’ are using this in a blended mix of data for use in the underground environment and on the surface in the mine control office (this was also covered in my Underground Tablet Solutions post earlier in December 2020).

The discussion then covers solar and wind generated electricity and which suits a mining businesses needs the best. Bywater then covers a trial that will be conducted by the Grannys’ team in early 2021 surrounding a Murray Engineering electric LV. This is the first time I have heard of this project being driven by the Perth based mining manufacturer with Siemens. This will be one to follow and review when released in the New Year.

As someone exploring this space, it is great to hear of other projects ambitions and desires to progress the industry forward. The timelines for delivery of certain hot topics within the underground environment are also a key take away from the podcast. Bravo Matt, well done! I look forward to compiling a Q and A with you in 2021!

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