He also said that for the first time, his youngest son Rohitha was also hauled before the FCID and was asked whether he was a shareholder of ‘Supreme Sat’ which was the first Sri Lankan company to be involved in the launch of a communications satellite.“Rohitha had explained that he does not hold any shares in Supreme Sat directly or indirectly and that he was a paid employee of that company with the designation of Technical Director from July 2012 to July 2014 after which he left to concentrate on higher studies. The FCID had thereupon wanted to know whether he had helped Supreme Sat to get their licences. Rohitha had explained that by the time he joined Supreme Sat in 2012, they had already acquired their licence and that he had been introduced to Supreme Sat by a Chinese businessman who had come to South Hampton University in England to recruit new graduates for his company. The satellite that was launched in 2012 is owned by the Chinese Government and Supreme Sat which is a Sri Lankan private sector entity has leased six of the 36 transponders on the satellite with a view to providing satellite communication services to Sri Lankan customers. I have been informed that the main investor in this company is a prominent Singaporean businessman,” Rajapaksa said. This week three members of Mahinda Rajapaksa’s family – his wife Shiranthi Rajapaksa and younger sons Yoshitha and Rohitha were questioned by the CID and FCID. Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa says his family is being used to deflect public attention from corruption allegations raised against the Government.He says the extent of the panic in the Government is evident in the shrill announcement that special courts will be established to hear cases involving the Rajapaksas. Mahinda Rajapaksa accused the CID and the FCID of being part of the Government propaganda offensive on his family. (Colombo Gazette) “My wife was asked why the colour of a jeep that had been made available by the Red Cross to her charity SiriliyaSaviya in 2011 and used by the Presidential Secretariat had been changed. International NGOs make their vehicles available to local charities once their projects are over. My wife had told the CID that she knows nothing about the maintenance or repair of vehicles used by the Presidential Secretariat. On Wednesday, the CID obtained a statement from my son Yoshitha on the same matter. He had been asked whether he had given instructions to anyone to change the colour of this vehicle. To this Yohitha had replied in the negative and explained that the transport division of the presidential secretariat maintains the vehicles and gets them painted if necessary. He had been asked whether he had used this jeep as his back up vehicle to which he had replied that it is the PSD that assigns any available vehicle for his back up team and that he had no role in the matter,” Mahinda Rajapaksa said.
The preliminary technical programme for the APCOM 2019 conference in Wroclaw, Poland, (June 4-6) has gone live, showing off some of the highest quality peer-reviewed papers on ‘digital transformation’ in mining, from resource estimation to mine operation and safety.The conference topics include:Geostatistics and resource estimationAPCOM said: “An entire three-day conference stream provides more than 20 leading- edge and peer-reviewed papers by world-class practitioners from leading mining companies and by world-leading research institutes.”Papers on this topic include: Transforming Exploration Data Through Machine Learning from MICROMINE’s Mark Gabbitus, Rock mass characterisation using MWD data and photogrammetry from Luleå University of Technology’s Sohail Manzoor, and Rethinking Fleet & Personnel Management in the era of IoT, Big Data, Gamification, and low-cost Tablet Technology from MST Global’s Sean Dessureault.Mine planningThere will be about 15 papers on newest IT-supported techniques in mine planning, uncertainty reduction, geomechanics, modelling, simulation and the most recent software technology, according to APCOM.Papers on this topic include: A procedure to generate optimised ramp designs using mathematical programming from Delphos Mine Planning Lab, AMTC/DIMIN, Universidad de Chile’s Nelson Morales, Incorporation of geological risk into underground mine planning from NEXA Resources’ Rafael Rosado and a presentation from AngloGold Ashanti’s Andrade Barbosa titled, Economic Optimisation of Rib Pillars Placement in Underground Mines.Scheduling and dispatch“Around 15 papers address long- and short-term scheduling optimisation, the application of neural networks and genetic algorithms as well as risk mitigation and related software systems. A keynote talk covers the impact of Internet of Things (IoT), Big Data and gamification on fleet scheduling topics,” APCOM said.The conference has attracted speakers on this subject from Clausthal University of Technology, AngloGold Ashanti, University of Alberta, AusGEMCO Pty Ltd, Newmont Mining Corp, Advanced Mining Technology Center and Maptek.Mine operation in digital transformationThere are more than 20 papers in this stream covering mining equipment related topics in the area of LHD transport, drilling and longwall operation, as well as underground communications and new digital technologies in mine safety, as well as product quality optimisation.Speakers from the Kola Science Centre of the Russian Academy of Sciences (Breakline and breakdown surfaces modelling in the design of large-scale blasts), Komatsu Mining (The Digital Mine eco-system), Tunnel Radio (Hybrid 5G Fibre Optic/Leaky Feeder Communication System) and Epiroc (Monitoring of a stoping operation, digital transformation in practice) are set to present papersEmerging technologies and robotics in miningUnder this topic, there are a number of sessions with almost 10 papers covering the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) in mining, the benefits of upcoming technology in robotics, mechatronics and communications, as well as the changes in machine design through digital transformation, APCOM said. Also a completely new transport system is presented in this stream.Papers in this stream include: More Safety in Underground Mining with IoT and Autonomous Robots (TU Bergakademie Freiberg, Institute of Mining and Special Civil Engineering), Application of UAV imaging and photogrammetry for high-resolution modelling of open pit geometry and slope stability monitoring (Department of Mining and Metallurgical Engineering, University of Nevada, Reno) and The concept of walking robot for mining industry (Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Wroclaw University of Science and Technology).Synergies from other industriesA plenary speech from an active airline captain will lead this session, talking about the impact of human-machine interfaces on decision-making of automated equipment and in control centres, APCOM said. Other papers will be on the transferability of building information modelling from commercial construction to mining.A paper from MT-Silesia Sp zoo called: From machine construction to mechatronic system design: Digital Transformation is changing the way of thinking! is included. There are also talks from MobileTronics GmbH’s George Biro on, Rethinking mining transport: Trackless trains for mass transport in mining and KGHM Polska Miedeź’s Mariusz Sangórski presenting, Energy Management System Maturity Model – Systematic Approach to Gain Knowledge about Organization’s Real Engagement in Energy Efficiency Area.The conference takes place at the convention centre of the Wroclaw University of Technology and is accompanied by an exhibition, APCOM said. A social programme, conference dinner with entertainment and partner activities are available as well as field trips on June 7.“A post-conference hike in the Karkonosze Mountains is offered from June 8-10, with overnight stays in two microbreweries on the ridge, is a relaxing finish to the technical discussions of the week,” APCOM said.All presentations are to be held in English. Simultaneous translation to Polish is provided if requested by a sufficient number of participants.International Mining is a media partner for APCOM 2019.