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Kal Tire has joined forces with tech specialists Pitcrew AI to create a new automated solution for the detection of hot tires, tire separations and other tire and mechanical damage on mine sites.

Any inspection anomalies are automatically transmitted into Kal Tire’s proprietary Tire Operations Management System (TOMS), enabling better decision making that will enhance fleet productivity and safety.

Kal Tire’s mining tire group senior vice president Dan Allan believes the new innovation will allow miners to work smarter.

“Tire pressure monitoring systems (TPMS) can give a strong picture of what’s happening inside the tire, but so much that can indicate the potential for tire failure happens outside the tire,” Allan said.

“We knew if we wanted to give customers the ability to make better operational decisions – and be a part of the future of autonomous mining – we’d need to add external telematics to the mix.

“Pitcrew’s artificial intelligence (AI), and their vision for the technology, supports our goal of solving customer challenges in practical, impactful ways.”

As automated inspection stations monitor front and rear tires of mining trucks passing by, the AI software searches the thermal imaging video footage for anomalies such as hot spots, belt edge and tread separations and other mechanical problems.

The findings are then reported to TOMS before the system then automates inspection work orders and schedules any necessary tire change work based on the severity of the damage.

The system has been successfully tested in the hot weather regions of Western Australia, while Kal Tire has worked with Pitcrew to develop a cold weather version of the device.

With customers already showing interest in the new technology, Kal Tire and Pitcrew expect automated inspection stations to be deployed on Kal Tire-serviced mine sites in 2022.