Mining Leads the Way in Innovation

Posted on January 02, 2019 by Minerals Make Life

What do autonomous machines and drones have to do with mining? They’re both technologies that are changing the way that we mine today.

The mining sector is one of the most important drivers of innovation for our economy. As new technologies emerge, mining companies often integrate these advancements into their operations to boost safety, efficiency and productivity.

At sites like Newmont Mining’s operations in Nevada, high-tech tools are now an integral part of everyday activity. Get a look inside Newmont’s operations to see how technology helps keep employees safe and enhances overall efficiency.

New technologies are being used to provide real-time analysis of mine activity, which helps mine operators improve response times to any issues that may arise. For example, many haul trucks have been fitted with fatigue monitoring devices, which perform facial analysis on the driver for signs of fatigue. The data is reported back to a foreman, allowing them to prevent accidents. An evaluation of the technology showed that it helped decrease fatigue events by 87 percent.

Autonomous vehicles, which are operated from a control room, provide distance between workers and situations that might prove dangerous. These vehicles can also be navigated into areas of the mine that employees cannot go – giving mining companies the opportunity to extract more of the minerals we need for everyday life.

Around the globe, digital research is furthering mine safety. For instance, the Robo-Safe research group at the University of Alcalá in Madrid, Spain, is developing perception systems to monitor driver awareness as shown in the video. Remarkable accomplishments in mine safety can be largely attributed to technologies like these. Thanks to the culture of innovation in the industry, mining companies are continuously working smarter to protect their employees.

To learn more about how technology is used to enhance safety, check out our infographic.

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