KGHM systematically adds to the knowledge it has accumulated over the last 50+ years of operations. Its success stems from both rich traditions and a spirit of innovation.
The company constantly searches for technologies enabling the reduction of production costs and increased copper and associated metals recovery. It endeavors to protect the natural environment and to ensure the safety of its employees. Thanks to these efforts, KGHM has become not only a local, but also a world leader of innovation.
Annual expenditure of KGHM on research and development reached PLN 35 million. These financial outlays make it possible for the company to consistently implement the development strategy for 2009-2018. One of the pillars of the development strategy is the improvement of effectiveness which is, in fact, based on investing in new technologies. In 2015, the company prepared 130 scientific and technical expert opinions and conducted 45 research projects. These projects covered 25 thematic areas connected both with mining and ore smelting activities.
The projects involved the preparation of new systems for the mining of deep copper deposits and finding even safer underground machinery monitoring systems. Research was also conducted to increase the automation of mining, to explore energy-saving technologies, and finally to evaluate the impact of the mining industry on the natural environment.
KGHM is not only involved in feasible short-term projects, but also takes up ambitious challenges. KGHM is working on the newest technologies that might, in the future, change the manner and character of copper mining, e.g. a project looking into the application of artificial intelligence in metallurgical processes. The designed neuron networks would be able to memorise repeatable operations. If, after some time, there was a failure on the production line, the control system would be able to locate it and fix it.
The mining industry is not indifferent to the natural environment. Knowing that, KGHM is involved in many initiatives that diminish its impact on the environment. The company is taking part in the project "High-temperature reactors for industrial purposes". Being involved in this project will make it possible for KGHM to gain more competence in energy management. Additionally, the possibilities of meeting energy demands of the company with the use of such innovative solutions will be reviewed.