Walking the aisles of the Las Vegas Convention Center’s West Hall during CES 2023, the sight of the big, 100-ton Cat 777 off-highway truck will be a new and welcome addition to the automotive technology area. Beyond its distinctive yellow iron, there is also innovative Cat MineStar Command for hauling technology inside the truck that allows it to safely haul materials autonomously.
It represents more than 560 Cat autonomous trucks that each day travel a distance equivalent to twice the Earth’s circumference, without a driver. Over the last nine years, trucks equipped with Command have hauled more than 5 billion tonnes of material, and today Caterpillar has the world’s largest single fleet of autonomous trucks operating at one site.
“CES, the proving ground for breakthrough technologies and global innovators, is the ideal place for us to showcase our high-tech leadership,” comments Denise Johnson, group president of Caterpillar Resource Industries. “People have seen us as an equipment company for more than a century, and they are now realizing that we are a high-tech company as well.”
Senior Vice President of Caterpillar Resource Industries, Marc Cameron, adds:
“We help miners unearth materials found in everything from smartphone displays to batteries for electric vehicles that are exhibited at CES. Caterpillar and our diverse team of talented people are making a positive impact on our world, and CES gives us a platform to showcase our people and growth opportunities within the company.”
Autonomy, technology, and sustainability will take center stage in Caterpillar’s roughly 6,300 sq ft exhibit in January 2023. Beyond autonomous haulage, the company will showcase construction and mining safety, fleet management technologies, equipment health options, high-precision guidance technologies, and material tracking solutions.
“Our technologies are changing the world by advancing autonomy, finding new ways to keep people safe, improving fleet productivity, and building solutions that manage every aspect of an operation,” Tony Fassino, group president of Caterpillar Construction Industries adds. “In addition to the fully autonomous mining trucks, we offer solutions that automate and provide remote operation of dozers, wheel loaders, excavators, and skid steer and compact track loaders. Along with the productivity and safety benefits, automation is another way we can contribute to helping our customers build a better, more sustainable world.”
The Caterpillar exhibit experience
The exhibit’s centerpiece, the autonomous Cat 777 truck, dwarfs the size of vehicles in nearby automotive displays. Like autonomous cars, autonomous mining and construction vehicles operate without a driver on board. Further, autonomous mining trucks operate 24/7 in some of the most extreme environments and safely navigate where there are no lane lines to follow.
Four themed experiences help guide attendees through the booth.
- Big Solutions highlights Caterpillar’s leadership in developing the most advanced technologies in the world
- Big Innovation showcases why Caterpillar is a recognized leader in autonomous mining
- Big Responsibility covers how the company’s technologies help build a better, more sustainable world
- Big Opportunities focuses on people creating the high-tech solutions
Attendees will stand inside the 777’s truck bed and experience the big impact Cat technologies are making in the mining and construction industries, as well as the positive impact mining makes on our world. iPad stations will offer an augmented reality experience with each iPad focusing on a different subject. They include:
- Cat autonomy and technology
- Sustainability and the environment, incorporating safety and power solutions
- Size and scale of mining machines and how technology makes them safer and more productive
- The results of Cat’s autonomous solution
Cat Command technologies will be featured in real-time, using two remote operating stations connected to equipment hundreds of miles away. One station will remotely operate a Cat large dozer, while the second – a single universal station that can operate multiple types of Cat construction equipment – will be remotely connected to a Cat excavator. Caterpillar experts will be on hand to help attendees learn more about these technologies.
Attendees will also learn how Caterpillar is expanding autonomy to help lead the energy transformation, launching multiple initiatives with customers to develop battery electric vehicles.
“The next frontier for autonomy is helping mines manage power needs as more assets require electricity to operate,” says Johnson.