Robots roll into coal sector

The robot revolution is set to roll into Australian coal, as Whitehaven Coal prepares to become the first in its sector to deploy automated trucks.

The Australian is reporting Whitehaven managing director Paul Flynn told analysts the miner hopes to deploy its first fleet of autonomous trucks at its Maules Creek, NSW operations by October, hoping to switch on six autonomous Hitachi trucks in the first serious commercial deployment of the technology in the Australian coal sector.

The initial rollout of the technology will only affect about 10 per cent of the 60-strong fleet of haul trucks at the open cut mine, and the company said it does not expect it to affect any of its existing workforce.

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