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$750,000 to boost safety and innovation in resources sector

An Internet of Things-focused cluster will be established for the mining and energy resources sector to encourage innovation, facilitate collaboration and support access to new markets.

Manufacturing and Innovation Minister Kyam Maher said $250,000 per year over three years will fund a cluster designed to connect machines, devices and people to streamline the flow of information and to allow real-time decisions.

“This investment is critical to the competitive future of our mining and energy resources companies, and those companies that service this sector,” Mr Maher said.

“The Internet of Things (IoT) will open new opportunities in the mining and energy resources sector, with the power to make our local industry more productive and better able to maintain competitiveness in highly volatile global markets.

“A cluster will be developed by the Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA) and will comprise technology firms, research organisations and supply chain operators in the mining and energy resources sector.

“Examples of real world cases include the use of remote operations centres to provide predictive maintenance for equipment at remote mine sites.”

Mr Maher said innovation is “crucial to the future productivity and efficiency of this country’s resources sector”.

“The development of this cluster follows tech giant Cisco declaring Adelaide as Australia’s first smart and connected Lighthouse City earlier this year,” he said.

“We have all the ingredients for innovation success in this state – we have a strong research community, entrepreneurial businesses, high-quality education and a proven ability to collaborate.

“Maximising the potential of the resources sector is one of the Government’s number one economic objectives, and we’ve introduced a range of initiatives to support innovation in the sector.

“The Mining and Petroleum Services Centre of Excellence provides funding for collaborative innovation projects that address important problems for our resources sector.

“Another initiative is the ICT Roadmap for Minerals and Energy, which has funded projects involving remote monitoring of mine assets, big data analytics to improve the purity of ores and the real time transfer of information from the drill site – with more in the pipeline.”

AIIA will partner with the Government to bring commercial outcomes back to South Australia, facilitate cluster members to make investments, and provide access to advisers and multinationals with relevant supply chains.

AIIA Chair Kee Wong said the Internet of Things is opening opportunities for mining and energy resources companies to pursue visibility, safety, and efficiency.

“With this investment, South Australia can lead innovation and transformation in the sector across Australia,” Mr Wong said.

“Leveraging opportunities such as these to achieve broader national benefits is particularly important if we are to position Australia to compete effectively at the global level.”

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AMSJ April 2022