Mining Industry: Finding Gold in Your Fuel Management

Posted by Reza Tavassoli on 17-May-2019 7:36:00 AM
Reza Tavassoli
Miner Pushing Cart depicting gold can be found in the mining operations.
Mining + Fleet Management Systems = Success

Mining is a global industry, and all over the world, mines experience the same challenges and use the same tools to run profitable operations. Almost all mining operations run 24/7 and 365 days a year. When equipment must constantly be running, failures, fuel management errors, and operator misbehavior can quickly add up to millions in losses. Because most of the operation depends on generators, fuel becomes a very expensive and crucial part of the operating equation. This is where a solid mining fleet management system can provide significant benefits.  In addition to the vehicles, everything from the property lighting to the cafeteria and kitchen equipment, personnel housing and amenities, maintenance facilities, and most of the machinery operating outside and inside the plants depend on a continuously available fuel supply. Managing this supply accurately is where the big savings occur.

           Mining operations tend to have massive fuel storage facilities capable of stocking millions of gallons of fuel. These large storage tanks are continuously supplied with new loads of fuel at one end, while at the other end, fuel is dispensed directly into vehicles from fueling stations or carried to the machinery in tanker trucks. Many mines still track their fuel as a simple in-and-out of these fuel reserve tanks with essential human accountability of where the fuel goes daily. Those who rely on their integrated mine fleet management system know that fuel theft between the fuel truck and the generator is only the tip of the iceberg regarding possible reasons for extra consumption. Vehicle routing, idling, equipment condition, and weather contribute to fuel consumption. Coencorp has been working with these contributing factors for decades, and our fully integrated SM2 fleet management system has answered the call of the mining industry with the help of our client partners. Here’s a glimpse of how…


The Big and Critical Challenges image depicting the obstacles managers need to address with fleet management systems and fuel management.

          1 - Reconciliation: Accounting for the millions of liters of fuel purchased versus dispensed every month is an industry-wide imperative. This challenge is even more remarkable when inventories move from fixed storage dispensing facilities to distant infield storage equipment such as tanker trucks. With its fuel inventory management module and dedicated hardware for inventory management, SM2 makes inventory reconciliation as easy as a few mouse clicks and does it seamlessly, no matter how many remote tanks, storage tanks, or mobile tanks are operating in the mine.

           2 - Out of fuel Alerts: Any area of the mine that runs out of fuel becomes an emergency, taking up valuable resources and often causing expensive shutdowns. In the mining industry, it has been common practice to dispatch fuel trucks on scheduled fuel runs to each and every area of the operation to help prevent out-of-fuel incidents. This may be easier, but highly inefficient regarding the time it takes for the trucks to make runs, the loss of fuel and time when the visited equipment has enough fuel already, the increased possibility of human error, and the unexpected out of fuels on equipment that has an emergency increase in usage. With SM2’s integrated fuel inventory management, fuel mobile distribution management, and hardware peripherals, the fleet manager and fuel truck operator get real-time alerts for which areas of the mine need fuel and which do not. This helps eliminate out-of-fuel, substantially reduces the time spent on daily fuel runs, and optimizes fuel truck usage. In some cases, maybe even extend the life of your mobile equipment and delay the purchase of additional fuel trucks.

           3- Tracking the dispensed fuel: When, why, and how much fuel is dispensed to which equipment has often been tracked inaccurately when relying solely on human accountability. Tracking and managing fuel consumption is essential for fuel tax recovery, operating cost optimization, regulation compliance, and profit generation. With the implementation of our SM2 fuel distribution management module and fuel hardware peripherals for fixed and mobile fueling, you can account for every drop of fuel dispensed to all your equipment, including heavy vehicles, remote tanks, and generators. SM2’s automated, real-time data collection, user-friendly and customizable dashboards, and easy reporting and performance analysis deliver accurate KPIs and guarantee you have all you need to track and optimize your fuel usage efficiently. 

Always Have Accurate Inventory On HandImage of large tank for storing diesel or gasoline. 

           If only for ordering enough fuel when needed or year-end and quarterly reports, you always need an accurate tracking system of all fuel inventories on hand. With the SM2's fully integrated fuel management system, real-time inventory of all your fuel in storage tanks, remote tanks, and tanker trucks is available 24/7/365 with a simple mouse click. You will never again have to estimate where you have fuel, what amount is there, nor your total amount of fuel on hand. Furthermore, SM2 contains additional integrated functions where accurate data flows seamlessly between specialized modules. With SM2, you can also ensure all preventive maintenance is accurately performed, only authorized vehicles and personnel access defined or prescribed areas, and track where all your equipment is located.

             We have been proudly serving mining fleet management systems for 30 years and have built our successes on a passion for customizing solutions to fit the specific needs of our clients. SM2 seamlessly incorporates all these solutions into the most user-friendly, adaptable, and fully integrated fleet management tool in the market today. We invite you to challenge us with your unique situations and welcome the possibility of helping you do what you do best, serving your clients. Please reach out to our support team for more information. We’d love to chat!

Topics: fuel management, fuel tank management, mining