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An operational data based framework for longwall shearerperformance measurement

Coal is an important part of the energy mix in today’s world. In most countries, the deposits that can be economically extracted using surface mining techniques are becoming scarcer, resulting in underground mining, especially longwall operations, providing a larger share of total coal production. Optimisation of longwall operations should take equipment performance into consideration to understand the efficiency of the system and utilize it continuously as part of decision-making. In this study, the effects of the operational factors on the shearer performance in a longwall operation, and the total productive time of the shearer for a shift, were investigated. Data were collected from a longwall operation on site as input to a simulation model that allows the factors affecting the efficiency of the system to be investigated. The results of this study defines a suggested framework for the collection, analysis, and interpretation of longwall mining related operational data for the measurement of shearer performance.