How to Use Automation to Help With Raw Material Extraction

Raw material extraction and processing is the bedrock of many industries. Challenges in raw material location, extraction, transport, and processing can also have a radical impact on the efficiency of production, right up to the packaging of the finished product.

Peaks and Valleys

One of the big challenges in the sourcing of raw materials is maintaining a consistent flow of materials. Industries such as mining can be greatly impacted by weather, political crises, and natural disasters. These disasters can have a huge impact on factors from moving train cars to getting people to work. For example, iron ore may be consistently available, but be a challenge to consistently deliver.

These peaks and valleys in availability and production can create uproar in the commodities markets. Consistent access through the entire supply chain is critical to maintaining stable prices right up to the cash register. Raw material processors must know what’s coming and in what volume. Of course, proper material measurement and tracking is key.

Safety Considerations

The industry of raw material extraction has long been filled with dangers. From the risks to miners in the metals industry to the lingering impact of environmental damage over time, it can be agreed that raw material extraction is an industry that needs careful monitoring and general protection for all involved.

Automation features in this extraction offer many benefits to both workers and the general population. Automating can make it safer to handle products. Simple measurements, from weight to volume, as well as more complicated measurements, such as concentration and material makeup, can all be improved and made both safer and more accurate with the proper automating tools.

As raw material extraction is made safer and more accurate, the ability to look ahead and gauge the availability of raw materials can prevent upheaval in the future. Every aspect of the supply chain, from raw material extraction to bar code pricing, can be made more reliable with automation in extraction at the site. That being said, more reliable and efficient extraction is only one aspect of supply chain reliability.

Managing Raw Material Upheaval

Due to the necessity to constantly search for fresh raw materials and the challenges to supply chains across the globe, the Just In Time inventory practice is proving quite challenging. It makes sense that business owners will want to avoid using their ready cash and storage space to raw products that are not able to go to market immediately.

However, there is power in having a steady inventory of products, from raw materials to keep factories fed and parts to keep assembly lines running. The loss of a single part or material, particularly for companies with a global footprint and requirement, should not be ignored.

The steady supply of raw materials without risk to employees or the environment continues to be improved. Careful monitoring of the extraction process, along with any changes in the quality of the material, means that raw material suppliers can support production lines across the globe. Automating this extraction increases both safety and reliability.