Application of High Precision Mining for Optimising Load and Haul Operations at Kansanshi Mine, Zambia

  • Katongo Kangwa
  • Victor Mutambo The University of Zambia, School of Mines, Department of Metallurgical Engineering
Keywords: Keywords: High Precision Mining, Loading and Hauling optimisation, fleet, bucket positioning


Mining of copper and gold at Kansanshi is done in the Main and North West pits using hydraulic excavators and a mining fleet of haul trucks. In the recent past, there has been reduced truck deployment, increased truck and shovel waiting time, reduced production and reduced grade/quality of ore delivered to crushers. Therefore, there is need to improve productivity and optimise operations in mining, loading and hauling. This paper focuses on the use of High Precision Mining (HPM) through use of Wenco’s dispatching algorithm to achieve the best utilisation of all mining equipment and maximise production. The study involved establishing the precise bucket positioning, production rates, cycle times and monitoring the material type and quality /grade of ore delivered to the crushers. This was done by using BenchManager which relies on the motion of the Global positioning System (GPS) antenna scribing an arc as the excavator is rotated to determine the equipment’s centre of rotation by placing the bucket with the teeth flat on the ground (anywhere) and taking the rover and measuring left and right tooth on the outside of the teeth and taking note of the coordinates, first eastings then northings and lastly the elevation. With the tolerance of X=0.5m, Y=0.5m and Z=0.5m, it was noted that the events of a bucket mining out of the assigned polygon were reduced to about 50cm in distance from 34% to 15% and from 10% to 8% in terms of mismatches. The use of precision mining has led to reduced mining cost of about 10.3$/BCM, improved fleet/production reporting, high grade of the material delivered to the crushers of about 75% from the previous 65%. These results indicate that there is a strong business case for implementation of a Wenco fleet monitoring and dispatch system at the mine
How to Cite
K. Kangwa and V. Mutambo, “Application of High Precision Mining for Optimising Load and Haul Operations at Kansanshi Mine, Zambia”, Journal of Natural and Applied Sciences, vol. 6, no. 1, pp. 32-49, Dec. 2022.