The imperative of real-time environmental monitoring

March 2024 IoT & Automation, Mining (Industry)

The mining industry is at the intersection of robust economic growth and critical safety concerns. It demands innovative solutions that protect workers and optimise productivity. Probe Integrated Mining Technologies (Probe IMT) has partnered with M3SH Technology to offer environmental monitoring solutions that address these dual requirements in southern Africa.

“Real-time monitoring of various parameters, such as air quality, noise levels, dust particulate matter and air velocity, can provide insights into working conditions and equipment performance. This data enables quick responses to potential safety hazards and helps optimise operational efficiency,” says Gert Roselt, CEO of Probe IMT.

According to Roselt, embedding real-time environmental monitoring in mining operations affords a proactive approach to occupational health and safety. By continuously tracking environmental parameters, the technology alerts operators of any irregularities, facilitating immediate action to protect employees and equipment. For example, elevated dust particulate matter could suggest the need for better respiratory protective equipment or indicate a machinery malfunction that needs swift attention.

D52 Dust Particulate Matter Monitor.

Tracking parameters like air velocity helps to forecast potentially dangerous events like gas leakages or ventilation failures. These predictive capabilities can prevent serious incidents, reducing downtime and associated financial losses.

Monitoring devices must be designed to operate effectively even in harsh industrial conditions. They deliver real-time data, which can be leveraged to ensure safer work environments and more efficient operations. For example, early fire detection or air quality issues can alert management to potential risks, allowing quick action to protect workers and prevent costly downtime.

“Beyond immediate safety applications, the data gathered also serves as an invaluable tool for strategic decision-making,” says Roselt. “Analysing trends over time can reveal patterns and correlations that drive continuous improvement in working conditions and productivity.”

Real-time monitoring where mines need it most

P50 Environmental Monitor.

M3SH Technology provides a broad array of devices specifically designed to monitor and ensure safety and productivity in mining environments.

These encompass the P50 Environmental Monitor, an advanced multi-functional, sensor–rich device that accurately tracks work environment conditions. This fixed installation monitor is designed to operate in extreme, hazardous environments such as explosives and gaseous atmospheres. The S50 Smoke and Early Fire Monitor is designed to detect smoke and potential fire hazards at an early stage. The P511 Air Velocity Monitor assists in monitoring airflow within mining spaces, while the D52 Dust Particulate Matter Monitor is dedicated to tracking dust particle levels. Lastly, noise monitoring devices are crucial in monitoring and controlling noise pollution within mining environments.

M3SH solutions are backed by advanced Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) capabilities and cloud computing. They offer end-to-end support for standalone monitoring devices to custom-manufactured wearables and communication networks. This technology-driven approach ensures compliance with stringent industry standards and legal requirements, enhancing both safety and productivity.

By focusing on safety and productivity, the partnership between M3SH Technology and Probe IMT creates safer workplaces and drives operational efficiency. This approach promises a more sustainable and prosperous future for the region’s mining industry.

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