“For the First Time, Tier 2 and 3 Miners can easily remotely monitor and record movements of assets – from spanners in toolboxes to machines worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.”
Wastage slashed on mine sites as disruptive mining tech is implemented
In Perth, mining location technology company GeoMoby – shaping the future of location intelligence – says, for the first time, even Tier 2 and Tier 3 underground and surface mining operators can now afford to remotely track expensive machines and equipment and record that data. After the disruptive technology is installed, mining costs are slashed.
“For the first time, Tier 2 and Tier 3 miners (which are often on tight operational budgets) can access the best technology in the world right now to enable reliable asset tracking in underground and surface mining operations,”
says Chris Baudia, Founder and CEO of GeoMoby.
“Miners can monitor anything, from spanners in toolboxes to machines worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.”
“We are also noticing many Tier 1 miners (who already have large-scale, expensive location tracking and communications systems installed) are also implementing our easy-to-use system as a backup.”
Tracking of equipment is enabled by easy to install bright green, lunch-box-sized ‘nodes’ which are placed throughout mines at strategic intervals. BLE tags, which resemble tiny square ‘stickers’ about the size of a 20 cent piece, can be attached to anything – from small battery packs for tools to first aid kits. Other more sizeable monitoring devices are easily attached to underground drill rigs and mining machines.
“Unlike some corporate monitoring systems, we also want to assure our customers and their employees that the technology does not feature any invasive recording technology,” Baudia said. “Remote monitoring screens simply track equipment, and people, which is then displayed (via anonymised IDs) on a screen. The movement of the ‘IDs’ can be recorded so data can be shared and replayed to help make mining operations safer and more efficient.
“Our research indicates that, right now, millions of dollars are being unnecessarily lost during underground mining operations. Lack of accurate asset tracking can lead to machines and equipment being lost in tunnels, underutilized, used improperly or unable to be located at all. Our technology can be connected to valuable equipment to keep it safe as well as people.”
Successful GeoMoby trials have been completed with RAC, Downer and several open pit and underground mining operations in Australia. Items being misplaced have dramatically decreased.
“Our research suggests it is not uncommon for some mine sites in the WA Goldfields to misplace $80,000-$100,000 worth equipment in a week, this technology immediately slashes such wastage,” said Mathieu Paul, director and head of business development, at GeoMoby.
He has been overselling trials and installation of the technology in Western Australian mining operations.
“Not only is it costly to replace misplaced equipment, but there are time-wasting costs as teams look for important gear during the course of the working day. GeoMoby is now Australia’s most advanced location intelligence platform with a specialisation in live tracking and geofencing technologies for the mining industry. It provides a 360-degree view platform so its clients can visualise their assets – trucks, light vehicles, machines – and the most important one, people. This is done in real-time deep down underground tunnels as well as large surface mining operations.”
Please see a video example here – https://geomoby.com/case-study/underground-asset-management/
Perth-based GeoMoby provides an all-in-one, visibility platform allowing real-time monitoring of assets and people. GeoMoby’s goal is to change the way businesses make decisions and reach people, to help businesses control their data and their future.
It was established in 2013, in Perth, by founder and CEO Chris Baudia. GeoMoby’s leadership team is also supported by Mathieu Paul who was appointed as a director and head of strategy in 2016. Mathieu oversees sales and marketing. In September 2021, Andrew Rouse – an experienced mining professional with a passion for enhancing the METS (mining equipment technology services) sector, also joined GeoMoby as a director. Andrew helps develop strategic technology, software, and B2B partnerships in conjunction with Chris and Mathieu. GeoMoby employs 14 staff. Most are software specialists and based in Perth but some are located remotely. One staff member, originally from the Ukraine, lives in Israel, and others work in Kazakhstan. GeoMoby values highly its hard-working team, a priceless asset for any business. Its years of investment in R&D before going to market have ensured a quality, tested and proven, cost-effective, outcome-based offering that can now be delivered to market. In late 2022, GeoMoby undertook a successful capital raising of $3m, the second successful funding round undertaken by GeoMoby. In 2021, the company raised $1.25m.
Underground Mine Collapse Inspires Technology
Chris Baudia was inspired to create GeoMoby technology – on a visit to Australia from France more than a decade ago – after hearing about an underground mine collapse. Lives were lost and rescue efforts were negatively impacted by not knowing, in any accurate way, where those trapped were located. He knew that he could develop a technology to avoid, or greatly improve, positive outcomes in such incidents in the future, and so, the idea of GeoMoby was born.
“It is imperative that every team member returns safely to their families at the end of their shift, but what you can’t measure, you can’t manage,” said Chris Baudia. “This is particularly important in challenging environments such as mining (where staff, vehicles and machines are located underground) and visibility is limited. Compound these challenges, with a work environment increasingly impacted by health issues, and it is clear businesses must work smarter to ensure the safety of their teams. With our technology, staff health metrics can be monitored in real-time from the moment they arrive on site, detecting emergency situations the moment they arise, and prompting immediate action. Location-based safety analytics are crucial to implementing a safe system while ensuring little impact on production.”
Underground mines: GeoMoby technology is based on Bluetooth and a proprietary mesh network. Nodes are bright green and the size of a lunchbox. Many are fixed throughout mines. GeoMoby has a patent for its underground location technology. For underground installation, onsite electricians are not required. Mining operations do not need to be shutdown – the technology is fully wireless and cable-free. There are two ways of putting nodes on rock walls: nodes can be strapped onto existing underground mesh which is commonly onsite or they can be bolted onto walls. Underground installation generally takes less than an hour of training. GeoMoby technicians easily attach nodes or ‘green lunchboxes’ underground at strategic intervals, by hooking them to mesh, often already on walls. It is very simple and GeoMoby has experience installing kilometres of coverage in just a few hours. A small team will go to site and oversee the initial installation. Maximum space between the nodes is about 400m underground and 600m in open pits. The entire deployment process is generally around two days.
“Many underground mines – in Western Australia and the world – still use employee monitoring systems that revolve around whiteboards, spreadsheets and tag boards,” said Chris Baudia, founder of GeoMoby.
“Mistakes concerning equipment and people can easily be made, especially at the change of shift crews or during an emergency. There are no excuses in 2023 – our technology can monitor workers at all times, making sure everyone returns home safely, every single day. It is a valuable, modern tool in the kitbag of any mine manager ensuring the health and safety of large teams, working underground. Companies always need to know where their people are underground otherwise – in an emergency – response times can lag. Too often, in underground mining, there can be an inability to quickly and accurately locate personnel involved in critical incidents so the relevant emergency response can be employed in a timely manner.”
Surface mines: GeoMoby technology is a ‘fusion’ of various technologies that uses small batteries, smart phones, GPS, BLE tags and geofences. GeoMoby has a geofencing patent for this.
Heritage: GeoMoby, through its strategic partner Agreement Hub, is also working with a number of mining and renewable energy companies to use its location intelligence technology to protect cultural heritage sites. In September 2022, GeoMoby announced a partnership with cultural heritage management specialist, Agreement Hub, to offer Protect – the new best practice in cultural heritage protection. Location technology digitises mapping of culturally-sensitive areas and provides an app-based platform to alert land users working in these areas. This technology immediately reduces risk and simplifies a process that currently relies heavily on human intervention.
GeoMoby Technology in a Nutshell
GeoMoby technology can solve a range of operational inefficiencies on mine sites that can occur due to: lack of accurate and timely data; stakeholder engagement issues; and ESG compliance limitations, specifically relating to the protection of cultural heritage.
GeoMoby has unprecedented capabilities to turn data into real-time value – providing indoor, and outdoor geofencing with higher accuracy than industry standards – along with a negligible battery consumption, a solution it has patented.
GeoMoby uses location intelligence, geolocation, contextual data, geofencing, location analytics and a network carrier-agnostic. This solves many problems by providing a hyper accurate Live Tracking Platform (LTP) and a Real Time Location System (RTLS) for underground and surface operations.
GeoMoby’s feature-rich technology also enables users to trigger alerts and actions based on predefined sets of conditions including dwell-time, body temperature, weather, real-time traffic, user profile, and more. Complex geofences (virtual geographic boundaries) can be configured to trigger customised actions when crossed.
The technology offers a cloud-based SAAS platform. GeoMoby acts as the bridge that generates powerful data and converts it into meaningful information from which critical business decisions can be made to achieve health, security, efficiency, and productivity aims.
WA Government’s Work Health and Safety Act
“Western Australia introduced new tougher laws on work, health and safety (WHS) in March, 2022 and now, in 2023, there are no excuses,” said Chris Baudia of GeoMoby. It is particularly important for WA underground mines to embrace world-leading technology. The State Government’s Work Health and Safety Act 2020 (WHS Act) replaces previous legislation circa 1984, effectively aligning all workplaces under a single act to improve protections for WA workers. This is the most significant upgrade to WHS legislation in 30 years. The new WHS Act introduces the offence of ‘industrial manslaughter’ – the offence carries a maximum penalty of 20 years’ imprisonment and $5m fine for an individual, and a maximum fine of $10m for a corporation or employer. Senior decision-makers must exercise due diligence to ensure compliance, with responsibility firmly sitting with management when it comes to workplace safety.
About Chris Baudia, CEO and Founder
Chris is an entrepreneur, inventor, and driving force, behind GeoMoby. In the past, he used to manage multi-million dollar projects for global consulting companies. He holds a Master’s Degree in Computer Science and Telecommunications and is a certified Scrum Master since 2009. He has been a QuantumTX National Finalist (WA winner 2022), Hot 30 Core Innovation award winner (2022), a finalist in the RISE Business Award for Startup of the Year (2020), a recipient of the Amcom Upstart Investment Program in 2015 and WA Innovator of Year finalist in 2013.
He lives in Perth, Western Australia and is originally from France.
About Mathieu Paul, Director
Mathieu has been a director of GeoMoby for the past six years and has been instrumental in recent capital raising of $3m. He is now focused on business development and sales at GeoMoby. Mathieu has a Master’s Degree in Entrepreneurship, Finance, Project Management and Business Strategy from NEOMA Business School in France and received a Bachelor of Business Administration at Chulalongkorn University in Thailand. Prior to GeoMoby, Mathieu has worked in audit/finance analysis at KPMG and Grant Thornton. He has also been employed by Siemens France China and the South African Embassy in Paris. He has experience in management consulting, business valuations and sales and acquisitions. Mathieu lives in Perth, Western Australia and is also the principal of Insight Advisory Group.
For more information please contact:
For GeoMoby, Cate Rocchi, Perth Media
For Agreement Hub, Katie Rodwell GT Communications