Mines May Eliminate More Than Half Their Human Workers Within 10 Years - Slashdot

87023059 story Robotics AI Technology

Mines May Eliminate More Than Half Their Human Workers Within 10 Years (computerworld.com)

Posted by EditorDavid on Sunday October 30, 2016 @11:34AM from the canary-in-the-coal-mine? dept.
An anonymous Slashdot reader quotes ComputerWorld: In the next decade, the mining industry may lose more than half of its jobs to automation, according to a new report... This industry is adopting self-driving trucks, automated loaders and automated drilling and tunnel-boring systems. It is also testing fully autonomous long-distance trains, which carry materials from the mine to a port...

A broader question is whether mining is a bellwether for other industries. There's no clear answer, but what Aaron Cosbey, a development economist and a report author, can say is this: "Where you can find robotic replacements for human labor you tend to do it." Cosbey estimates that automation will replace 40% to 80% of the workers at a mine...

Driverless technology can increase output up to 20%, while decreasing fuel consumption up to 15%, according to the article. "This will increase demand for people with IT skills who can set up and operate the automation systems -- but at far smaller numbers than the people automation displaces."

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