Human interaction with automated mining equipment: the development of an emerging technologies database

Horberry, Tim and Lynas, Danellie (2012) Human interaction with automated mining equipment: the development of an emerging technologies database. Ergonomics Australia, 8 1: 1-6.

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Author Horberry, Tim
Lynas, Danellie
Title Human interaction with automated mining equipment: the development of an emerging technologies database
Journal name Ergonomics Australia
ISSN 1033-1875
Publication date 2012
Sub-type Article (original research)
Volume 8
Issue 1
Start page 1
End page 6
Total pages 6
Place of publication Baulkham Hills, NSW, Australia
Publisher Human Factors and Ergonomics Society of Australia
Collection year 2013
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Background: In recent years there has been a large increase in the amount of new technology being developed and deployed
in the minerals industry. The human element implications of such technologies in mining have not yet been explored in any
detail. Aims: The overall focus of this paper is upon operator interaction with automated mining equipment; in particular,
it aims to develop a database to capture the emerging technology trends associated with such equipment. Method: A wide
variety of data sources were used to create the database, including: personal interviews with technology developers, mine
site/ corporate personnel and regulators; attendance at relevant mine site automation conferences; podcasts by leading
mining personnel; desktop reviews of relevant articles; original equipment manufacturer product lists and websites, and
reviews of mining equipment suppliers guides. To put mining automation into context, specific technologies used in mining
automation are grouped in the database by ‘degrees of automation’, such as fully automated and partially automated systems;
assistance devices such as proximity detection/ warning systems; and other relevant technologies. Results: The database,
shown in Appendix 1, considers both existing and emerging technologies. A brief product description is also provided,
including the technology used, function of the system, and where possible the location of where it is being used. An analysis
of the main human element implications of such technology is also provided. Conclusion: Whilst it is a comprehensive
database, it is by no means exhaustive of all automated equipment available within the minerals sector. Some technologies
are restricted to company/ user-only access with limited or no information publically accessible, and some technologies are
still in the research and development stage. It does, however, provide a broad overview of the types of available technologies
associated with automated mining practices as well as the emerging trends in new technologies within this sector. By nature,
the database represents a changing environment; this paper presents a snapshot of it at one point in time. Further work to
keep the information up to date is recommended. It is possible the database could be configured to allow mediated open
user access to populate it with up to date information of emerging technologies as this material becomes available. Despite
this, the database and associated analysis give an understanding of what is presently available and what are likely to be the
human factors issues, such as future skills requirements, associated with such technology.
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Minerals Industry Safety and Health Centre Publications
Official 2013 Collection
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Created: Thu, 15 Nov 2012, 11:31:29 EST by Dr Tim Horberry on behalf of Minerals Industry Safety and Health Centre