A tire, is perhaps the most abused component in a mine, not just in terms of usage but also in the real sense!! Any failure whether human or technical, is directly blamed on the tire.
Typically, manufacturers of OTR Tires have had to wait for feedback from customers, manufacturers field tests, opinions and data from Equipment operators and OTR Tire maintenance teams to make Major Physical changes to OTR Tires.
The Research departments of these OTR Tire Manufacturers are continuously looking for new ways to improve customer satisfaction of their products.
One thing the Research and Product development teams lacked was data in real time on various aspects of the OTR Tire use. So it made it even more difficult to pinpoint the error and also in the process many customers jump ship to other brands for no fault of the tire too.
You can never blame the error on the operator and in many cases the operator especially in public sector mining companies in developing countries, do not really come up with the reason for the error and in many cases the equipment that had a tire failure lies idle for months if not years.
At Keepmining we have seen that monitoring technology has leapfrogged over the years. There are a new breed of users in the mines and changing thought processes within the manufacturing the community that want to optimise the “life of the OTR Tire “ and attain better productivity.
With costs of maintenance skyrocketing, mines, OTR Manufacturers were in a quandary on how to address performance issues of the OTR Tire without affecting profitability and costs.
Enter the concept of Comprehensive OTR Tire Management service. Many tire management companies were willing to operate “the complete OTR Tire Shop” within a mine! (This is a story for another post!)
OTR Tires were no more a commodity, they were a service offering!
With this new sector opening up, real time monitoring of OTR Tire performance became a priority.
So, the OTR Tire needed intelligence.
Some of the key parameters mines / manufacturers / Maintenance crews would like to monitor are:
- OTR Tire pressure in real time
- Tread wear/repairs
- TKPH / load monitoring
- Rim and wheels condition monitoring
- And many more site specific issues
In the next post we shall examine a generic OTR Tire monitoring and management system. How they work / should work and the benefits of this approach.