Mining company Fortescue and equipment manufacturer Liebherr have announced a partnership to jointly develop and validate a fully integrated Autonomous Haulage Solution (AHS), which the former claims to be the first AHS operating zero emissions vehicles globally.

The solution brings Fortescue closer to delivering zero emissions autonomous haul trucks to its iron ore operations in the Pilbara, Western Australia as part of the miner’s target to achieve real zero terrestrial emissions (Scope 1 and 2) across its Australian iron ore operations by 2030.

The new AHS, which is being developed, tested and validated in partnership with Liebherr at Fortescue’s iron ore operations, integrates a Fleet Management System (FMS), onboard autonomy kit for the T 264 truck, and a High Precision Machine Guidance system for loading equipment.

“Our deep expertise in autonomous haulage, that has come from operating over 200 diesel autonomous haul trucks across our mine sites, has enabled Fortescue and Liebherr to develop a Fleet Management System that uniquely targets efficiency and unlocks untapped capacity in our fleet.''

Dino Otranto, Fortescue Metals chief executive officer

Fortescue Metals chief executive officer, Dino Otranto said: “Our deep expertise in autonomous haulage, that has come from operating over 200 diesel autonomous haul trucks across our mine sites, has enabled Fortescue and Liebherr to develop a Fleet Management System that uniquely targets efficiency and unlocks untapped capacity in our fleet. The partnership with Liebherr has enabled us to jointly develop the Fleet Management Systems, which provide us with an OEM agnostic solution that can be integrated with any autonomous platform including trucks, drills, watercarts or any other heavy mining equipment. This critical technology puts our business in full control of our development priorities and roadmap.”

''Liebherr has always prioritised market-led product development and we are privileged to be partnering with Fortescue to collectively develop and deploy this Autonomous Haulage Solution.''

Oliver Weiss, EVP R&D, engineering, and production, Liebherr

Oliver Weiss, EVP R&D, engineering, and production, Liebherr, added: “Liebherr has always prioritised market-led product development and we are privileged to be partnering with Fortescue to collectively develop and deploy this Autonomous Haulage Solution. Our collaborative efforts will be beneficial, not only for Fortescue, but for the entire mining industry.”