IEEE-ICIT2019 Melbourne, Australia

Automation in Resources Industry
Industry Forum Speakers



Joe Cucuzza
Managing Director, Amira International, Australia

After graduating with BSc(Hons.) in geophysics from Melbourne University in 1975, Joe Cucuzza joined Anglo American. He subsequently joined Comalco where he was involved in exploration for many different commodities across Australia. In 1988 he was appointed to the position of Research Coordinator with AMIRA International. In this role, he was responsible for initiating, and managing multi-company collaborative projects in both the minerals and petroleum sectors. He was subsequently promoted to the positions of Business Unit Leader (Geoscience); Global Manager-Business Development and Research Director-Exploration, Mining and Sustainability. Joe was appointed Managing Director of AMIRA International in July 2012. He holds an MSc(Geology) from the ANU and Master of Business in Enterprise Innovation at Swinburne Uni. Joe is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.


Title and abstract of presentation


The role of collaboration in the development of the next generation autonomous systems in mining
The mining industry is being driven headlong down the automation route. It has generally been the majors who have championed, developed and implemented automation.

The most visible manifestations of this are the driverless trains, autonomous trucks, drill & blasting etc. In the vast majority of cases these developments are the result of partnerships between the mining company and one of more OEMs. Up to this point, autonomous operations has been driven by OEMs, with each developing the software and user interface. Underlying each piece of software is a set of application program interfaces (APIs).

The autonomous systems being currently deployed vary in the degree of autonomy. There is a long way to go before a fully autonomous, digital mine is possible, and indeed whether industry is capable of fully embracing such technologies in a large scale. Currently such existing systems are not fully integrated; a fully autonomous digital mine will require smart, integrated and totally interoperable systems. An important question that will be discussed is what will be the role of collaboration in the development of the next generation autonomous systems that will lead to a truly autonomous mine.



Colin Farrelly
Co-founder, Indago Partners, Melbourne Australia

As a geoscientist with a long career in technology applied to mining and petroleum industries, Colin Farrelly has a keen interest in understanding how resource companies compete in a rapidly changing business environment. Co-founder of Indago Partners, an advisory to resource companies and their suppliers on the benefits and pitfalls of transformational change involving new technology.  He has previously worked as a consultant in mineral resource evaluation, digital strategy and knowledge management. He is also a Director of the Pearcey Institute, a not-for-profit organisation aimed at socio-economic research into disruptive innovation impacting industries of importance to Australia. 


Title of Presentation and Abstract  

Integration versus Interoperability - alternative pathways to the Network Centric Digital Mine

Authors:  Colin T Farrelly, Indago Partners and Jeremy C Davies, University of Queensland

Mining companies have been incorporating new digital capabilities, such as intelligent sensors, decision analytics, remote operations and end-to-end process integration and automation.   Early adopters have highlighted how mining data is locked up in proprietary systems that create deep “vertical�? islands of data, as well as gaps in the measurement of key mining processes.  What is needed in mining, and what has often been developed in other industries, is an open interoperable “plug and play�? digital environment that allows for easy adoption of new sensors and new decision support applications as well as the easy orchestration of operational processes involving an increased degree of automation.

In addition to connecting their disparate specialist systems, mining companies are experimenting with new methods of modeling, visualizing and simulating their operations using systems that originate from other industries, such as 3D CAD design and product life-cycle management (PLM) systems and 3D gaming engines.   This type of environment is often now being called a “Digital Twin�? since it aims to mimic every aspect of the real mining environment in a digital form.  In many industries, these Digital Twin technologies are being supported by strategic partnerships and open standards and architectures that allow for innovation and rapid adoption.

Many vendors are presenting their suite of solutions as an integrated environment to deliver a Digital Twin, but in reality, they themselves have a complex set of legacy and emerging systems with varying degrees of integration that are mostly developed as proprietary systems with limited interoperability with other vendors’ systems.  Nevertheless, progress is being made, especially when lessons are learned from other industries that have been more successful in sifting their operations from relatively static and disparate functions to a digitally aware, dynamic, automated, integrated and interactive environment.



Francois Le, Founder and CEO, iotaBEAM, USA

Francois Le is the founder and CEO of iotaBEAM, IoT security solution company that extends security beyond the Edge to low complexity sensors and IoT endpoints.  Francois brings with him more than 25 years of senior leadership experience, having started and developed business globally for a number of Silicon Valley startups as well as public companies.

He was SVP and Corporate Officer at Network Equipment Technologies, Inc. (acquired by Sonus, now Ribbon), and held Global Sales and Business Development senior executive positions at AOptix Technologies, Tropos Networks (now ABB Wireless), and Aperto Networks. Prior to that, Francois was at 3Com Corp. (acquired by HPE), managing the WAN Access Products B.U.  He came to 3Com via its acquisition of start-up OnStream Networks,

Francois got his MBA from Stanford University (Stanford GSB) and MS in Structural Engineering from the National Institute of Applied Sciences in Lyons, France (INSA-Lyon).


Title of Presentation and Abstract  

Optimizing Cryptographic Strength for Low Complexity IoT Sensors in Automated Applications

The hacking of sensors is becoming an all too common occurrence due to the disproportionate impact that easy-to-hack IoT sensors have in automated applications.  It is precisely because they are low complexity that these sensors are easy targets.  This session examines the impact of cryptographic strength for low power, low complexity IoT sensors and suggests ways to protect them and their data.



Professor Peter Knights,
Professor and Discipline Leader for Mining Engineering, School of Mechanical and Mining Engineering, University of Queensland, Australia

From 2006-2015 Prof Knights held the BMA Chair in Mining. From 1996-2015 he was an Assistant and subsequently Associate Professor with the Catholic University of Chile, based in Santiago, Chile. His research interests focus on maintenance and reliability engineering with an emphasis on data driven maintenance decisions applied to conventional and automated mining equipment, mine planning and novel mining systems. He leads a research group comprised of 4 PhD and 2 M.Phil. students. 

Prof. Knights has an extensive history of research collaboration with industry. In Chile, Prof Knights produced a series of pioneering papers that applied statistical cost modelling to quantify unscheduled/scheduled maintenance ratios for mobile mining equipment. He developed the Jack-knife approach for classifying chronic unplanned maintenance downtime events, now incorporated into Meridian software which is regularly used by a number of large mining companies. Whilst Program Leader for the Smart Mining Systems group for CRCMining (2005-2014) Prof. Knights led the development of ValueTree software that was later adopted for use by Rio Tinto Iron Ore and is now available as a software product from Concerto Analytics.


Title of Presentation and Abstract  

The Business Case for Zero Entry Mining

Current mine automation efforts are not truly “manless�? and as such miss the business benefits that a true “manless�? mine would afford. There are some conditions and complex orebodies that necessitate truly “manless�? operations in certain mining zones and there exists a business opportunity that true “manless�? operations present. We have called this “Zero Entry Mining�? because no human need enters the mining zone. Zero Entry Mining not only reduces risk exposure to personnel but can also be a source of added economic value through higher utilization of equipment, reduced services (e.g. ventilation) and increased revenue through access to difficult to mine areas. In deep mining this might, for example, involve exploitation of ore at depth where steep pit walls, or mining underneath unsupported ground which may involve unacceptable risk for personnel to enter the mining zone. Ultimately zero entry mining will enable the complete re-design of mines, mining equipment and mining methods in ways that were not possible if personnel were in the mining zone. This paper discusses the economic benefits of zero-entry mining as well as developments necessary to enable its operations, including the systems integrity and technology support to deliver true zero-entry mining capability.



Sam Matsumoto

Founded the Japan Cluster of Cyber Security (JCLSP) to provide a networking platform to share ideas and best practices and identify partnership opportunities to help develop and train cyber security professionals. Having helped over 100 companies formulate business strategies to enter Japan, he is highly skilled at examining technologies to identify the strategic value for potential partners and develop go-to-market plans for exploiting and commercializing such technologies and services in Japan.


Title of Presentation and Abstract  

Automotive Cyber Threat

The Automotive industry has pioneered practical of sophisticated sensors, control algorithms, and systems for real world transportation situations. Initially installed in vehicles to increase engine reliability and meet more stringent emissions standards, an increasing array of sensors are being used to improve vehicle safety, passenger comfort, theft protection, auto-diagnostics, and consumer conveniences such as mapping, entertainment, and tethering to the home. Unfortunately, these sensors and onboard systems have either weak or zero cybersecurity protection; this has resulted in life endangering situations, personal data theft, and loss of privacy. Current directions for dealing with the security of some Japanese companies are previewed. This presentation examines the dangers that ignoring automotive cybersecurity brings and proposes a method to mitigate the associated security risks.



Valeriy Vyatkin

Valeriy Vyatkin (IEEE M’03, SM’04) received Ph.D. degree in applied computer science from Taganrog State University of Radio Engineering (TSURE), Russia, in 1992, Dr. Eng. degree in electrical engineering from Nagoya Institute of Technology, Japan in 1999, Dr. Sc. (Eng.) degree in information and control systems in 1999 from TSURE, and Habilitation degree from the Ministry of Science and Technology of Sachsen-Anhalt, Germany in 2002.

He is on joint appointment as Chaired Professor (Ämnesföreträdare) of Dependable Computation and Communication Systems, Luleå University of Technology, Luleå, Sweden, and Professor of Information and Computer Engineering in Automation at Aalto University, Helsinki, Finland. He is also co-director of the international research laboratory of Computer Technologies at ITMO University, St. Petersburg, Russia.
Previously, he was a Visiting Scholar at Cambridge University, U.K., and had permanent academic appointments with the University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand; Martin Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg, Halle, Germany, as we'll as in Japan and Russia.

His research interests include dependable distributed automation and industrial informatics; software engineering for industrial automation systems; artificial intelligence, distributed architectures and multi-agent systems applied in various industry sectors, including smart grid, material handling, building management systems, data centres and reconfigurable manufacturing.

Dr. Vyatkin was awarded the Andrew P. Sage award for the best IEEE Transactions paper in 2012. He has been the Chair of IEEE IES Technical Committee on Industrial Informatics since 2016.


Title of Presentation and Abstract  

IoT in Industrial Automation: Towards Virtual Distributed PLC

Programmable Logic Controllers (PLC) currently form the backbone of industrial automation hardware and software. PLCs were one of the symbols of the third industrial revolution. The arrival of the Internet of Things technologies and their wide penetration to the industrial domains brings new opportunities for making industrial automation systems truly flexible and intelligent and is often associated with the 4th industrial revolution. Smart things in the automation context look like machines and components thereof equipped with a good deal of computational power. How shall the PLC architecture change in the view of these tectonic shifts?

We will present the concept of virtual PLC which is adjusted to the realities of highly distributed networked automation systems, but still retains compatibility with the legacy PLC programming paradigms. The concept decouples physical hardware architecture of the automation systems from the way programs are organised, developed and maintained. The Virtual PLC concept brings the transparency of software deployment to any hardware topology, from the traditional PLC “box�?,


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