Personnel tracking in mines

Issue 6 2020 Access Control & Identity Management

In the event of a rescue operation, it is impossible to predict what dangerous elements lie ahead. Challenges in such an unstable environment, which can be completely dark or filled with smoke, fire, heat, dust and falling unstable ground, is life threatening to both the rescuers and the rescued. Time is therefore of the essence and is one of the greatest factors when carrying out any rescue operation.

EWCop have created an RFID Personnel Tracking system, which enables the mining operation to track personnel. It enables the mine to account for its personnel at all times, meaning that it knows the exact whereabouts of an employee in the event of an emergency or rescue operation.

The system is added to the employee’s PPE (hard/safety hat), which is compulsory; it can also be added to a rescue pack or battery lamp. The solution consists of the following:

· EWCop Base Station – Live communication with tracking system and software.

· EWCOP RF Handheld Reader – Used by the rescue team to locate trapped employees.

· EWCop RFID Antennas – Located at various points for live tracking.

· EWCOP RFID Rescue Tags – Tag has a battery life of three years and can be replaced.

· EWCOP Software – Software is web-based and can be accessed from anywhere.

System features

· Extreme long-range detection in a shaft of up to 300 metres.

· RF signal detection between surfaces of up to 18 metres.

· Proximity detection at shaft entrance.

· Automated shaft clearance.

This system has been deployed and tested in different mining environments and has successfully passed, with each company posing its own unique site, health and life safety requirements.


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