Quantifying the benefits of simulator training for dragline operators

Dorey, F. and Knights, P. F. (2015) Quantifying the benefits of simulator training for dragline operators. Transactions of the Institutions of Mining and Metallurgy, Section A: Mining Technology, 124 2: 97-106. doi:10.1179/1743286315Y.0000000007

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Author Dorey, F.
Knights, P. F.
Title Quantifying the benefits of simulator training for dragline operators
Journal name Transactions of the Institutions of Mining and Metallurgy, Section A: Mining Technology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1743-2863
Publication date 2015-06-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1179/1743286315Y.0000000007
Open Access Status Not Open Access
Volume 124
Issue 2
Start page 97
End page 106
Total pages 10
Place of publication Leeds, W Yorks, United Kingdom
Publisher Maney Publishing
Language eng
Abstract Dragline operator performance significantly effects the profitability of strip coal mines. To this effect, the mining industry is increasingly making use of interactive simulators that employ a high-fidelity virtual reality environment to train dragline operators. To date it has been difficult to quantify the benefits of investing in simulator training for dragline operators. Performance and machine duty data can be collected, but need to be analysed in relation to a control group of operators considering the potential for bias because of the ‘Hawthorne effect’. This study advances a methodology to quantify the improvements in dig productivity and machine duty for a group of four experienced operators exposed to simulator training. The size of the group was limited by operational and time restrictions. Dig productivity (bench cubic metres/dig hour) and machine duty (cumulative boom stress index) were logged for a 1 month period following training. The performance of a ‘control’ group of three operators, who did not undertake simulator training, but were provided with verbal feedback on their performance, was also monitored. Three of the four experienced operators who participated in this study achieved a significant short term improvement in one aspect of their performance without sacrificing machine duty. Two of these three operators sustained this improvement over the subsequent month of observation. Two of the control group of three operators demonstrated no appreciable change in performance, while the third achieved a significant reduction in boom stress index at the expense of decreased dig productivity. As such the performance improvements observed by operators trained in the immersive simulator cannot be attributed to feedback alone or to the Hawthorne effect. The results indicate that immersive simulator training can provide a quantifiable short term improvement in the performance of experienced dragline operators. Further work is required to quantify the long term sustainability of these performance improvements.
Keyword Dragline
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: School of Mechanical & Mining Engineering Publications
Official 2016 Collection
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Citation counts: Scopus Citation Count Cited 3 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Tue, 25 Aug 2015, 11:35:30 EST by System User on behalf of Scholarly Communication and Digitisation Service