Introducing Vulcan 8.1

Friday, June 11th, 2010

Eric González, Vulcan Product Manager, discusses upcoming improvements that were directly requested by customers, as well as planned upgrades.

How does this release differ from other Vulcan releases?

Using a more agile development has allowed us to add to our planned roadmap as customer feedback is received. We can leave space to be more responsive to customers’ needs, and are able to work on upgrades in a shorter time frame.

Obviously we cannot do that with some of the bigger projects which require a longer lead time, but we’re very excited about some of the relatively smaller upgrades which will provide value to our users.

What are some of the upgrades that customers have helped to drive?

Customers indicated that they wanted to work a lot faster within grade control, and to interact with elements on screen more efficiently. A new toolbar provides quick single-click access to the tools. The result is a faster grade control process.

Ramp design is integral to underground mine design. Customers reported that it would be useful to unfold a ramp. A new tool creates a section through a line, which is useful for not only unfolding ramps but also other 3D design work.

What else is new?

New underground grade control tools build on the easy workflow of our traditional open pit framework. Grade control engineers or geologists will now be able to apply an automated process to generate accurate, reliable results for underground operations.

The stope optimiser is the first tool arising from Maptek’s involvement in the PRIMO project, which brings together companies willing to invest in researching optimisation tools for the underground mine environment. These partnerships help to develop more productive and efficient tools for day-to-day operations.

Explain the new scheduling options.

New scheduler bundles work for open pit mines which are not necessarily designed or created in Vulcan. Flexible tools can be used with 3rd party data. Using Vulcan however, you can add more modules – start with a scheduling application and expand to a more feature-rich Vulcan configuration.

It also performs as a stand-alone scheduler – it’s really a comprehensive general scheduling package.

The Short Term Planner works with the existing Vulcan MineModeller or equivalent configuration. It follows the Vulcan framework, and uses and outputs Vulcan data for short to medium term planning. This is another example of partnering with customers to extend development.

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