The Mine Haul Road Optimisation Alliance (HROA) is a unique Australian industry–academia collaboration that has been developed to support mine haul road operators. The alliance integrates industry, end-user service providers and academic research expertise in mine haul road design, construction and operation to identify, quantify, implement and monitor the various equipment, materials and road management strategies and solutions required to drive haulage productivity improvements.
Initially, a broad overview of the university–industry collaborative landscape is presented, following which the current situation in the Australian mining sector is reviewed both nationally, and on a country-wide basis internationally. This insight places into context the opportunity that strategic collaborations present, to drive productivity and efficiency in mining, while also delivering innovative technology solutions.
Following an overview of the HROA collaborative structure, aims and objectives, it is shown how academia and industry collaborations can deliver a more robust and needs-driven solution to mine haul road design, performance and management, especially where integrated solutions are needed. Critically in this approach, implementation and monitoring data provided by industry and service providers alike form the foundation on which to develop research knowledge and innovation that is more responsive to the end-user requirements, typically represented by ‘early goals’ and practical, implementable solutions.
The paper concludes with examples of how the alliance collaborations work in practice to deliver focused mine haul road research outcomes, together with the mechanisms used to ensure industry needs are met through end-user driven research solutions for enhanced operational performance.
Handel, D, Miedecke, J, Thompson, R, Tomicek, E and Tulloch, D, 2016. Driving Haulage Productivity Improvements through Industry–Academia Collaboration, in Proceedings Ninth AusIMM Open Pit Operators’ Conference 2016, pp 243–252 (The Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy: Melbourne).