"We've seen a lot more emphasis around taking an existing tire or tires in general and helping (mining companies) increase those wear rates: How can we help them last longer? How can we help with load capacity on the tire and load capacity on the equipment?
"It's a different shift away from just an acquisition view on buying tires to a total cost of ownership and a productivity-driven measure on how we're valuing the tires in general," he said.
To address this demand, Bridgestone last year released its updated TreadStat tire and rim management platform, designed to help mining fleets monitor and report on the condition of their tires and rims. The update to a web-based platform allows end-users to monitor and generate customized reports from any device.
TreadStat works with the company's B-TAG system, which measures a tire's pressure and temperature remotely, with a direct-link capability to transfer data to the fleet in real-time.
TreadStat and B-TAG were both systems designed and developed by Bridgestone.
While the B-TAG is designed for use in Bridgestone tires, the TreadStat can be used to track all brands of tires, according to Mr. Cole.
"We look at it more as a customer tool. It's not necessarily just a Bridgestone tool. We wanted to position customers to have better information on their fleets and how their fleets are operating in total."
With real-time data, fleets can change their operating patterns and what they are doing at the mine site at a moment's notice because they see what's currently happening with the equipment, Mr. Cole said.
"We were able to marry the two systems together, so you're getting historical reporting, live reporting and updates on exactly what conditions the tires are operating in at any given moment.
"We're seeing a bigger push around how do we take that from general reporting to being able to put indicators as we start moving toward predictability," he said.
"I think predictive failure is going to be the biggest thing that we see from anybody, whether it's tires or equipment, over the next decade. Not only do I want to know that I'm getting the most out of that tire as far as lifetime, but I want to know when it's going to fail, and I want to plan for that failure so that I'm removing it the day before it would fail. And then we work backwards from that from the supply chain standpoint," Mr. Cole said.
"Predictive analytics, to me, is really the biggest trend change that we'll see in the next five to 10 years."