March 2021
Volume 73    Issue 3

Haul-road monitoring in openpit mines using unmanned aerial vehicles: A case study at Bald Mountain Mine site

Medinac, Filip; Bamford, Thomas; Hart, Matthew; Kowalczyk, Michal; Esmaeili, Kamran

ABSTRACT:

Improved haul-road conditions can have a positive impact on mine operations, resulting in heightened safety, productivity gains, longer tire life and lower maintenance costs. For these reasons, a monitoring program is required to ensure the operational efficiency of the haul roads. Currently, at Bald Mountain Mine, monthly site severity studies, ad hoc inspections by frontline supervisors or operator feedback reporting are used to assess road conditions. These methods are subjective and provide low temporal resolution data. This case study presents novel unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) technologies, applied on a critical section of haul road at Bald Mountain, to showcase the potential for monitoring haul roads. The results show that orthophotos and digital elevation models can be used to assess the road smoothness condition and to check the road design compliance. Moreover, the aerial mapping allows detection of surface water, rock spillage and potholes on the road that can be quickly repaired/removed by the dedicated road maintenance team.

 

Full-text paper:
Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration (2020) 37:1877–1883, https://doi.org/10.1007/s42461-020-00291-w

HOW CAN YOU READ THE FULL TEXT OF MME PAPERS?

Follow these easy steps if you are an SME member:
  • Go to www.smenet.org/login . Sign in with your email address and password.
  • Hover your mouse over “Publications and Resources” in the top banner. Click on “Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration (MME) Journal” in the pull-down menu.
  • Scroll down and click on the “Read the MME Journal Online” button, which will take you to the Springer site as an SME member who is eligible for free access. (To see published papers on the Springer site, click on “Browse Volumes & Issues” in the blue banner.)
If you are not an SME member, go to https://www.springer.com/engineering/journal/42461 for paid access. Or join SME at www.smenet.org/join