New international standards development committee on automated mining systems


By Tim Skinner and Paul Steenhof

A new standards development committee has been approved by the International Standards Organization (ISO) Technical Management Board under ISO TC 82 (Mining) on the topic of Advanced Automated Mining Systems (i.e. ISO TC 82/SC8). Canada is holding the International Chair and Secretary positions for this new subcommittee, made possible through the support of a consortium of Canadian mining companies (including Peck Tech, Agnico Eagle, 3DP, Teck Resources, Suncor, Wenco, Mosaic, Barrick, Osisko Gold Royalties and IAMGold) as well as  the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (CIM) and Global Mining Standards and Guidelines Group (GMSG). CIM is also directly supporting and sponsoring the Harmonized Canadian Mining Standards Mirror Committee (SMC) for ISO TC 82 and its subcommittees. CSA Group provides the International Secretary to ISO TC 82/SC8 as well as the Canadian Secretary to the SMC to ISO TC 82 and its subcommittees, helping administrate these committees and manage the standards development program.

There are a number of key benefits for the Canadian and international mining community of Canada leading this standardization initiative, including:

  • Canada is in a position to take leadership in establishing and setting the direction for the development of international standards and best practices as related to advanced autonomous mining. This leadership position will have direct and strong positive benefits for Canada’s competitiveness, technological research, development and innovation and ultimate economic prosperity.
  • The Canadian mining industry primarily consists of mine operators, mining consultants, dealers, suppliers, technology providers and industry associations and organizations; however, it is not a mining original equipment manufacturing (OEM) country. The subcommittee related to autonomous mining will directly and positively impact mine operations in Canada, Canadian mining operations internationally and global mine operators as it will provide greater focus and priority for mining technological advancement and innovation.
  • Canada can drive greater collaboration and participation amongst the global mining industry and thus produce a more efficient environment for not only the Canadian industry, but the entire global mining sector.
  • Canadian experts will be able to be directly involved with any ISO working group established for autonomous mining.
  • This will provide all stakeholders of the Canadian mining industry an opportunity to gain advantage from the rapid development, evolution and application of automation and technology to improve mining performance, safety and reduce the environmental impact of mining generally.

This new subcommittee will concentrate standards development, knowledge, research and best practices pertaining to the use and application of advanced and automated systems, technologies and practices specific to the mining sector. The new subcommittee has received strong support and input from the major mining countries, mining OTMs, and mine operators. Currently there are nine countries participating on this subcommittee: Australia (SA), Canada (SCC), Chile (INN), China (SAC), Finland (SFS), Germany (DIN), South Africa (SABS), Sweden (SIS), and the United States (ANSI)). Additional countries are expected to join the subcommittee.

There are a number of ways for Canadians to participate in this initiative:

  • Involvement on the Canadian Standards Mirror Committee to ISO TC 92/SC8 (managed by CSA Group). This provides a key mechanism through which Canadian representatives can participate in the standards work initiated and developed through TC 82/SC8
  • Being appointed as International Experts to specific working groups developing specific standards under ISO TC 82/SC8 (coordinated through the Canadian Standards Mirror Committee to ISO TC 82/SC8)
  • Being appointed International Leaders on any given standardization initiative (coordinated through the Canadian Standards Mirror Committee to ISO TC 82/SC8)

An initial list of potential standardization priorities has been identified for this new subcommittee on Advanced Automated Mining Systems. The committee leadership is planning to organize a taskforce to review and update this list of standardization priorities as well as contribute to the Strategic Business Plan of the new subcommittee.

A formal meeting of the new international committee is also being planned for early fall (September) 2018.

If you would like to be involved or would like more information, please contact: