Nick Larson

Introducing trackPIN™ & surveyPIN™

Our business development team has just returned to Vancouver from the CIM Expo in Montreal, where they showcased our new high precision positioning products to the public for the first time. At the request of key stakeholders in the mining industry, we have taken the innovative positioning subsystem from our DriveAssist™ operator assistance platform and released it as a separate product. Named trackPIN™, this revolutionary product brings 2.5cm tracking-grade performance at a cost low enough for fleet wide installations on haul trucks and even light vehicles.

In order to meet the positioning needs of every mine operation, we also introduced a survey-grade positioning device with 8mm accuracy, named surveyPIN™. surveyPIN™ is fully interchangeable with trackPIN™, allowing mines to easily swap boxes for applications requiring highest accuracy and fastest convergence time.

trackPIN™ and surveyPIN™ feature dual-antennas for determining heading as well as an open-API so that their outputs can be subscribed to by 3rd-party systems. A built-in 1W communication router provides best-in-class connectivity to the mine’s network for remote management.

For further information, check out our new pages for trackPIN™ and surveyPIN™

Nick Larson

The Need for CM Accuracy in Collision Avoidance

The following post is from PERSPECTIVE, a digital publication that we send to clients, partners, and other associates. You can request to be added to our mailing list here 

The number of collision avoidance installations at operations around the world is growing daily. Collision avoidance systems are no longer a luxury as mines face higher productivity targets and a lower tolerance for accidents. Countries around the world, including the United States, India, and South Africa are in various stages of implementing legislation that will go as far as legally requiring the implementation of collision avoidance in mining.

One of the major limitations in the development of collision avoidance systems has been their reliance on GPS or GNSS technology. Typically, these systems have an accuracy of around 2 to 5 meters on a given mine surface. This means two vehicles can have a relative position error (RPE) of 4-10 meters (contrary to popular belief, these errors add up and do not cancel each other out).

In a standard mining operation, there are a number of collision situations where a vehicle to vehicle error of 4-10 meter is completely unacceptable. Examples include truck spotting, two-way/parallel driving, dozer cleaning, and more. Averaging and otherwise filtering in software can hide the extent of this inaccuracy from the operator but it doesn’t solve the issue. In fact, it adds delays and false alarms which decrease the operator’s trust in the system.

Our engineers have been hard at work for over a year trying to eliminate this limitation and build a truly world-class solution with as little RPE as possible. As we announced at MINExpo 2016, they succeeded, and the latest version of our DriveAssist™ collision avoidance solution features up to 2.5cm position accuracy (a RPE of 5cm).

The following graphic shows a comparison between the relative positioning error of a traditional collision avoidance system (top) and DriveAssist™ (bottom). The red paths indicate false alarms even though the two trucks are not on a collision course.

Of course, we also refused to compromise on our commitment to DriveAssist™ as a low-cost platform that is accessible to operations of all types and sizes. If you’re interested in RIGID ROBOTICS’ solutions, or just a brainstorming session or a consultation, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Nick Larson

Human Resources and Automation

Automation solutions, such as those we provide using our DriveAssist™ and CONDUCTOR™ platforms, are requiring companies to rethink their Human Resources (HR) strategies. RIGID ROBOTICS’ CEO, Mehran Motamed, recently contributed to an article on the topic by Oracle HR consultant Mark Wadsley. The article, titled “How HR can learn from the People challenges in Mining,” discusses personnel challenges in the mining industry as well as RIGID ROBOTICS’ unique approach to them.

In the article, Mehran says “For mining companies, [automation] is an organisational change with people at its core.” This statement aligns with our continued emphasis on the importance of integrating humans with the latest technologies. The impact on existing and future personnel is a key consideration during any project undertaken by RIGID ROBOTICS. We also frequently consult with existing and potential clients on automation related HR issues.

The article by Mark Wadsley is available on LinkedIn

Contact us to discuss the automation and HR issues facing your company or operation


Nick Larson

RIGID ROBOTICS’ Post MINExpo Global Expansion

RIGID ROBOTICS’ global presence is expanding following a successful exhibition at MINExpo 2016. During the show, our company’s business development team met with prospective partners from various countries around the globe. As a result, two companies have been chosen offer RIGID ROBOTICS’ solutions, as well as installation and local support to customers in their respective regions.

PROINFRA will be our representative in Mexico, bringing DriveAssist™ into the booming Mexican mining industry. PROINFRA has years of experience in mining technology as well as a shared passion for delivering the right technology with local support.

Across the Pacific Ocean, Mining Technicians Group – Australia (MTGA) will bring DriveAssist™ installations and support into Australia. MTGA is a team of highly qualified technicians and engineers with a long history of installing and supporting automation technology and systems in Australian mining operations.

Together, these two companies help us improve our service offerings and increase our value proposition for a large number of mine operators. We are very excited to operate in both the Mexican and Australian markets as we continue to expand globally.

Our updated global presence can be viewed on our about page.

Nick Larson

Reflecting on a Successful MINExpo 2016

RIGID ROBOTICS used MINExpo 2016 to launch an updated version of our DriveAssist™ collision avoidance and vehicle autonomy platform, as well as to showcase the all new CONDUCTOR™ aerial platform.

MINExpo 2020 3Hundreds of people visited RIGID ROBOTICS’ booth in the South Hall over the show’s 3 days. Our team greatly enjoyed the opportunity to reconnect with existing customers and partners from around the mining industry. We also made many new connections with people who share RIGID ROBOTICS’ vision for improving safety and cutting costs through automation.

Additionally, several members of the media joined us in order to learn about RIGID ROBOTICS’ solutions as well as the role of autonomy in the future of mining. We look forward to sharing their articles on our website as well as social media.

Finally, we reached tentative agreements to grow the RIGID ROBOTICS’ family and expand our global footprint.

We would like to say thanks to everyone that visited us at the show, especially those who traveled to Las Vegas just to see DriveAssist™ and CONDUCTOR™. It’s fair to say that we’re already excited for MINExpo 2020.

RIGID ROBOTICS’ Product Engineer Thomas Huryn (left), Business Development Coordinator Nick Larson (center), and CEO Mehran Motamed (right)