Rock Products

MAY 2019

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32 • ROCK products • May 2019 www.rockproducts.com Levy I n 1918, Edward Levy Sr. shook the hand of Henry Ford, and the Edw. C. Levy Co. was born. Since those early years, the Levy Group of Companies in Michigan has grown and flour- ished, becoming a premier, national construction-materials company. The company's business lines are vast, everything from steel- mill services and slag processing; to aggregates and concrete production; to road construction. In 2016, the company began to see the benefits of using Kespry drones for quicker, better and faster topographic surveys, according to Matt Van Slembrouck, mine engineer. But it wasn't long until the company discovered additional benefits, such as inventory management. "Before we stated with Kespry it was an inexact science really," Van Slembrouck said. "We used a combination of tribal knowledge and best guess to manage inventory." The company then moved into ground-based surveying, which was labor intensive and again, inexact. "Our data was based on what we could collect, which involved walking stockpiles," he said. "We also did aerial flyovers and we were spending a lot on that. We needed a way to get the informa- tion faster and more accurately." Embracing Kespry Kespry did a demo in Detroit for the company. It opened a few eyes. "We saw data the next day and we were impressed," Van Slembrouck said. Kespry explained that customers use its technology to autonomously measure stockpile volumes and manage inventory across their sites because it produces data that is up to 80% more accurate than manual measurement or using other drone solutions. All their survey data is stored in one central cloud application. The data is accessible by the entire team for analysis and can also easily be used in their operational systems. It was enough to convince Edw. C. Levy Co. that it needed its own drone. Fortunately, adding a drone didn't mean adding new employ- ees. A group of Edw. C. Levy employees were cross-trained and earned their Part 107 license. "We use the drone a lot," Van Slembrouck said. "The primary use is measuring stockpiles, but we also use it to inspect high- wall faces. We use it for our annual mine planning: it is a great tool to adjust calculations on current conditions." Data from Sky High Mine Planning and Inventory Management at Edw. C. Levy Co. By Mark S. Kuhar

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