First Ore-Mining and ZYFRA have signed a three-year memorandum of understanding (MoU) to deploy artificial intelligence (AI) solutions for mining and processing operations at the Pavlovskoe deposit in Russia.

The lead-zinc deposit is located on Novaya Zemlya archipelago in the Arctic Ocean.

The project was included in the ‘Social and Economic Development of the Arctic Area of the Russian Federation’ programme.

First-Ore is a division of Rosatom State Atomic Energy Corp while ZYFRA is a digital solutions provider for heavy industries.

Once the partners move ahead with the development, the Pavlovskoe deposit is set to become the most northerly mine in Russia.

ZYFRA chief executive officer Igor Bogachev said: “It is more difficult for companies to operate in extreme climatic conditions because of factors such as the high cost of resources and special work safety regulations.

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“The robotised systems offered by our subsidiary VIST Group, including Intelligent Mine, will reduce equipment downtime by 10%-20% and maintenance costs by 15-18%, thereby cutting production costs by 2%-3%.”

Intelligent Mine is a set of digital technologies for the production processes management of open-pit mining operations.

Its optimisation is based on artificial intelligence, which allows distributing robotic dump trucks along routes in an open cycle in accordance with the multi-criteria optimisation approach.

“We are beginning this work in advance so that the very first ore will be produced using advanced technologies in the safest possible conditions.”

The system enables mineral extraction in hard-to-reach and remote regions with severe climatic and subsurface conditions.

The two companies aim to explore a possible project to implement robotics and remote control of quarry equipment at the Pavlovskoe deposit of the Novaya Zemlya archipelago.

First Ore-Mining Company executive director Igor Semenov said: “Rosatom State Corporation and First Ore-Mining Company have a strong focus on occupational safety. We are beginning this work in advance so that the very first ore will be produced using advanced technologies in the safest possible conditions.”