How Sustainable LED Lighting Benefits Mobile Mining Operations

How Sustainable LED Lighting Benefits Mobile Mining Operations

How energy-efficient LED lighting improves mine productivity, cost-efficiency and safety.

January 13, 2022

Operators of mobile mining equipment brave dusty roads daily in extreme, unpredictable conditions. Without safety measures to keep them out of harm’s way, these harsh environments can result in frequent accidents and damaged equipment – disrupting mine operations, endangering workers and creating unnecessary waste.

Without proper mining equipment on-site, operators may struggle to stay compliant with ever-evolving and increasingly strict Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) requirements – potentially resulting in fines for non-compliance.

But there is a simple solution to keep your mine site running smoothly.

How LEDs are meeting the ESG corporate sustainability requirements:

Energy-efficient LEDs significantly slash monthly energy consumption and costs, especially for large mining operations.
Task-specific LEDs keep work areas brightly lit, enhancing visibility and operator safety. Superior lighting improves operators’ comfort, and prevents eye strain and fatigue.
Long-lasting LEDs can operate for over 50,000 hours and require less maintenance, resulting in lower maintenance costs and operational downtime.

Adopting sustainable, energy-efficient LED fixtures for mobile mining equipment can bring both short- and long-term benefits, improving productivity, cost-efficiency and workforce safety.

Here are three ways sustainable lighting can optimize your mining operations:

1. Energy-savings to reduce energy costs

The challenge mining operators face with complying with environmental regulations is that operations typically require around-the-clock lighting, often resulting in a high amount of energy wastage.

For the first time in 20 years, energy prices rose between the winters of 2020 and 2021 by $0.001 per KWH – a stark departure from historical patterns of prices dipping in the winter. With prices on the rise, energy costs may pose a greater risk to your bottom line.

Hence, many operators are now opting for LED lighting fixtures for mobile mining equipment, which can significantly reduce monthly energy consumption through lower wattage needs.

With less energy drawn for the always-on lighting essential for mobile mining equipment such as wheel loaders, dozers and excavators, fuel costs are reduced, leaving a smaller environmental footprint – in keeping with ESG regulations.

By retrofitting equipment lighting, the need for additional ancillary lighting is reduced. LED fixtures on mobile equipment optimally directs light towards the mining work area using custom beam optics, reducing your mining fleet’s carbon footprint and lighting pollution.

Together, all of this ensures that environmental goals are met and your mine is operating with a sustainable strategy.

2. Workforce safety

Mine sites face some of the most extreme conditions, which can pose a slurry of risks. This is especially true for operators of mobile mining equipment that have to constantly traverse between work areas and dimly lit haul roads.

Unpredictable terrain, high pressure underground environments and high-traffic mine sites can be treacherous to navigate without the highest levels of visibility. Not only do lighting fixtures need to provide superior illumination; they need to be built for durability to outlast the toughest conditions.

LED mobile equipment lighting that can withstand possible collisions, corrosion and high pressure, are essential for operations – preventing accidents, equipment damage and disruptions while allowing the site to consistently run at an optimal level. 

A constant risk for mobile mining equipment such as wheel loaders is their proximity to large equipment on-site and the high possibility of collisions.

Task-specific LED lighting fixtures used on equipment can help to illuminate danger zones and help operators steer clear of collisions, supporting your mine’s ability to maintain workforce safety.

Well-designed LED lights also reduce eye fatigue for operators by emitting focused light beams, ensuring light is efficiently directed towards targeted work areas.

3. Optimized speed

Every second counts when it comes to downtime. Each minute not spent meeting yield and extraction targets is costing your mine hundreds of dollars.

To ensure a mine is operating with undisrupted productivity and output, mobile equipment needs to remain in the field for as long as possible without failure or accidents which can bring operations to a halt.

Did you know?

$50,000 per hour. That’s how much equipment can cost an average mine whenever it has to be down for maintenance or is inoperable due to insufficient light. That's simply unsustainable, and the best way to minimize this downtime is to replace traditional lighting with durable, longer-lasting LED fixtures. With better visibility, mobile equipment stays up and running, ensuring higher productivity for your mine.

With fewer breakable components and filament bulbs, energy-efficient LEDs can withstand demanding conditions that would break traditional fixtures. Hence, the minor shift to sustainable lighting, reduces maintenance or replacement costs by upwards of 80% and allows your most productive mining equipment to remain operational for longer periods.

Not sure how to kickstart your journey in sustainable mining? Work with a proven lighting expert.

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