Maptek, a leading mining technical solutions company with offices around the world, is opening its second office in the United States next week at 1028 Idaho St. in Elko.
Everyone is invited to the grand opening celebration at the new office on Oct. 3 from 5-7 p.m. Stop by to enjoy food from Ogi Deli, beer and other beverages, giveaways, and music provided by D.J. Chip Stone. To RSVP – and to submit song requests and comments – go to go.maptek.com/elko.
“It’s exciting to see a global technology leader like Maptek locating in Elko, especially in the downtown area,” Elko Mayor Reece Keener said. “Maptek’s decision to open shop here indicates their confidence in the Elko and regional economy.”
Maptek was founded in Australia in 1981 and provided the mining industry with some of the world’s very first technical software products.
“It was the very early stages of geological modeling on computers,” said Rob Hardman, general manager of Maptek’s North American region. “Maptek was the earliest pioneer in the mining software field for a long time. And, of course, we are still the industry leader when it comes to solutions in the mining space.”
Today, Maptek has about 395 employees globally with offices in Australia, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Chile, Peru, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
The company has seen a lot of growth over the past few years with two new offices opening in Canada — one in Montreal, Québec, and the other in Vancouver, British Columbia — and one new office in Mexico in Hermosillo, Sonora.
“We’ve experimented with the idea of opening an office in Elko for quite a while,” Hardman said. “Northern Nevada is, and will continue to be, one of the most productive and significant mining regions in the world.”
“Every significant mine in northern Nevada is a client of ours in one way or another,” Hardman said. “From the largest players to the smaller, but still significant, operations, we have been engaged throughout the region for quite a long time.”
Maptek currently works with 49 mine sites and 1,140 Maptek software users in the northern Nevada region. Maptek products are used in every phase of mining operations, from exploration to operations.
For many years, people from Maptek’s Denver office have spent significant time in Elko, working with people at mines around the region and testing and evaluating new technologies.
“As we’ve expanded new offices into Canada and Mexico,” Hardman said, “We’ve learned that we can better serve the industry and our clients if we have a team of helpful people locally based. It’s something that we’ve learned from experience over the last three years of expanding into these other markets.”
With the office in Elko, Maptek employees will no longer have to say, “We’ll be back out in Elko two weeks from now, we can visit you then.” Instead, they will be able to say, “We’re right here on Idaho Street. Stop in after work and we can help you figure that out,” or, “I’m 45 minutes away from the site, I can be out there this afternoon to help you with that.”
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Hardman said Maptek plans to have three local people working out of the Elko office, and there will also be some specialists who will be in the office regularly.
“We’re putting a team there who really understands the area, is familiar with the mines, and understands their challenges and goals. The Maptek office in Elko will also host product demos, optimized training courses, and expert consulting services. In addition, the office will have a dedicated area for networking, client discussions, and brainstorming of customized solutions.”
Maptek was a pioneer in developing software for mining when the company started nearly 40 years ago, but in the last 10 to 15 years this field has grown exponentially.
“There are so many overlapping technologies now,” Hardman said. “Part of the challenge that our clients face is to make sure that this avalanche of data is actually useful. The hard work is making that data meaningful, having quick access to it, and having it integrate with data coming from multiple vendors.”
Maptek provides solutions across a broad range of mining functions, from exploration and geologic modeling to mine design, mine planning, and mine operations. These solutions offer streamlined workflows, optimization tools, and compelling visualizations to help customers safely maximize the value of their operation.
“Maptek is doing significant research and development right now within the space of automated spatial data workflows and reporting,” Hardman said. “We’re on the cusp of coming out with solutions that involve automated processing of spatial survey data to help our clients work more efficiently.”
“Maptek is also working on geological modeling via machine learning. Machine learning is currently a prominent topic in the mining industry. We’re making the application of that technology a reality with solutions that apply machine learning techniques to automated modeling of geological domains.”
“The machine learning applications that we’re developing augment and enhance current efforts, not only through efficiency gains and the ability to speed up processes, but also by providing geologists and engineers with tools to better inform decisions and improve the accuracy of outputs,” Hardman said.
BlastLogic, a drill and blast data management system for open pit mines, is another product that Hardman said has driven value for Elko-area mines and beyond.
“BlastLogic enables clients to streamline their drill and blast design along with tracking and analysis. They can make significant improvements and better decisions as far as their blast implementation, referencing back to mine plans, geology, and geotechnical data.
“Also, BlastLogic allows for real-time connection and visualization out in the field or in the office due to our tablet integration. We’ve made important upgrades in that area and we’re finding that global demand has continued to increase as fast as we can technically support and implement it. It has become a very valuable solution for clients.”
“We’re working on quite a few things,” Hardman said, “But in terms of the Elko area, I think those are some of the big ones.”