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BHP fast tracks iron ore modernisation

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article image Rio Tinto remote operations centre at Perth Airport. Image: SMH.

BHP Billiton is fast tracking the modernisation of its Pilbara iron ore division, coinciding with the launch of its new remote operation centre in Perth.

The move will also attempt to reduce contractor spending, SMH reports.

BHP's iron ore boss, Jimmy Wilson, will open the ''integrated remote operating centre'' with WA Premier Colin Barnett today.

The centre’s launch adds to the growing trend of mine site automisation and remote control initiatives with mining and logistics work in the Pilbara increasingly being controlled in Perth.

Rio Tinto already runs a similar operation out of Perth Airport and Roy Hill Holdings is also developing a remote operation centre for its iron ore mine, port and rail project.

Earlier this year BHP said it will focus on automated equipment and new technology as it moves toward “next generation mining”.

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