In the beginning, driving remotely felt unusual since they only had the camera to work with and no control over drilling noise or vibration.
”The centering was by far the most difficult. After all, we only have one camera to see through. It went better and better, but it's probably wise to just let the more experienced operators run remotely. You need to learn to drill properly from the cab before you start operating the BenchREMOTE.”
The fact that the rigs, five SmartROC D65, are stable machines that rarely malfunction, certainly facilitates the work via BenchREMOTE. They were delivered just over 1.5 years ago and drill with 8-meter steel pipes.
”The D65 is reliable, agile and easy to operate. We joke around about it being idiot-proof! With pipes of eight meters we don’t have to splice as much and thereby gain time,” says Pierre Medfors.
He is also confident in having Epiroc as a service partner.
”Their mechanics are always on site and just a call away. If something happens, they help us at once.”