NORCAT and Glencore launch technology innovation programme

NORCAT and Glencore’s Sudbury Integrated Nickel Operations have launched a technology and innovation programme to facilitate and enhance the mining company’s capabilities to bring new, state-of-the-art technologies into its operations and accelerate the rate of technology adoption across the industry, NORCAT has reported.

NORCAT, which calls itself a global leader in the development and provision of skilled labour training and innovation services, is the only innovation centre in the world that owns and operates an underground mine designed to “enable start-ups, small/medium enterprises, and international companies to develop, test, and demonstrate innovative technologies in an operating mine environment”, it says.

This facility has seen NORCAT become a global destination for mining companies to “see and touch” emerging technologies poised to transform the industry, it said.

Kevin McAuley, Director Sustainability, Technical Services and Innovation at Glencore’s Sudbury Integrated Nickel Operations, said: “We are excited to partner with NORCAT to implement this technology and innovation programme. This partnership not only provides us a unique opportunity to access a wide range of emerging technologies that will help us deliver on our broader business strategy, but also it continues to support the vibrant mining technology ecosystem at the NORCAT Underground Centre.”

Don Duval, NORCAT’s CEO, said the company was working hard to continue its leading role in “all that is the future of mining”.

“NORCAT’s portfolio of mining technology companies using our state-of-the-art operating mine as an ‘active laboratory’ has created an ecosystem like no other in the world,” he added. “We are excited to partner with Glencore and continue to build and support Canada’s global reputation as a market leader in the mining industry.”

NORCAT says it will continue to identify and engage with mining technology companies from around the world to support the implementation and demonstration of their products at the Underground Centre. “By doing so, NORCAT helps to connect and broker relationships between mining technology companies (the ‘builders of innovation’) and global mining companies (the ‘buyers’ of innovation), creating a vibrant tech ecosystem unique on the global stage.”