Canadian Mining Journal


DESIGN: RCT develops warning system for underground mine access

Overhead Portal Warning Credit: RCT

Overhead Portal Warning Credit: RCT

AUSTRALIA – RCT, a company specializing in autonomous solutions, has fulfilled requests from mining clients and developed a warning system to prevent oversized equipment from getting stuck inside underground mining portals.

Staff from RCT’s branch in Kalgoorlie in Western Australia were approached by two major mining clients and asked to create a solution to prevent portal blockages, which can disrupt mining operations.

Branch technicians subsequently produced the Over Height Portal Warning System, which consists of a laser mounted at a particular height connected to a unit placed at the portal entrance.

The unit will produce an audible alarm and flash the word ‘Stop’ to alert operators and nearby personnel there is a potential hazard.

Site staff are able to determine the system’s field of view and isolate areas such as corners or poles so that the system will only activate when it senses new objects.

Rick Radcliffe, RCT’s Kalgoorlie branch manager, said the local technicians were happy to rise to the challenge set by the company’s clients.

“Occasionally underground haul trucks try to re-enter the portal with their trays accidentally in a raised position and this causes the trucks to get wedged in the portal. The time needed to dislodge the haul truck from the portal is very costly to the mining operation,” he said. “Therefore, the Over Height Portal Warning System is a cost effective and easy solution that will help keep mining operations running smoothly.”

Since its development the Over Height Portal Warning System has been sold to 10 mine sites in Australia.

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