Improving safety by predicting mine disasters

Tuesday, 22 August, 2023

Improving safety by predicting mine disasters

Safety can be improved in mines through greater monitoring of wind, gas density and temperatures, according to a new study.

The joint study from Charles Darwin University (CDU) and the University of Technology Sydney (UTS), ‘An FSV analysis approach to verify the robustness of the triple-correlation analysis theoretical framework’, focused on developing a gas monitoring system which takes a holistic approach to assessing wind, gas and temperature conditions.

The project used data from a large Global Fortune 500 listed mining company in China, which held 46% of the world’s coal production in 2020.

Co-author and CDU Faculty of Science and Technology Associate Professor Niusha Shafiabady said the study examined real-time data and all tests indicated three significant correlations between gas, temperature and wind. The project confirmed the framework could be used to develop a gas warning system with improved sensitivity to reduce the incidence of gas explosions.

“A significant number (3284) of coalmines have high gas content at outburst-prone risk levels across almost all 26 major coalmining provinces in China,” Shafiabady said.

“For example, on 10 June 2020 a serious coal and gas outburst accident occurred in Liaoyuan, China, which resulted in seven deaths and two injuries, with a direct economic loss of ¥16.66 million ($3.4 million).

“It is significant to carry out real-time monitoring of coal and rock dynamic disasters during coal mining activities.”

Shafiabady said the results of the study could be used by different mining companies to avoid gas incidents.

“The outcomes of this study can also be used in other industries such as chemical industry, oil and gas industry, water treatment plants and semiconductor manufacturing industries,” she said.

“Currently we are working on creating a real-time artificial intelligence decision-making system with the ability to predict the accidents as an addition to the current designed gas monitoring system.”

The study was undertaken by CDU, UTS, Shanxi Normal University, Central Queensland University, Taiyuan Normal University, Shanxi Fenxi Mining Industry Group Co and Shanxi Fenxi Mining Zhongxing Coal Industry Co. The study was published in the journal Scientific Reports.

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