Collision avoidance systems are becoming a critical safety technology in the mining industry of the 21st century. This article will explore application areas, recent developments, the collision avoidance system market, and future directions and prospects.
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Collision Avoidance Systems: Overview and Application
The average number of fatalities in the mining industry has declined over time due to investments in new technologies that improve the safety of miners. A total of 30-40% of deaths in the mining industry are attributable to critical issues with vehicles and plant machinery, such as collisions.
Vehicle interaction control failures are the main reason for deaths attributable to vehicles in mines. Automation of vehicle systems is a vital component in reducing the number of deaths worldwide in the mining industry and other key economic sectors such as construction.
A collision avoidance system is a central component of automated safety applications. The main benefits of using a collision avoidance system are accident risk minimization, improved worker safety, and improved productivity. By decreasing the risk of critical accidents, operational downtime and financial loss are minimized.
Collision avoidance systems are assisting systems integrated into a vehicle’s control system. Mounted on vehicles, they detect and differentiate nearby objects, such as workers, infrastructure, and other vehicles and plant machinery, enhancing detection and early warning systems onboard vehicles.
Sensors in the system detect objects. After detection, the system measures risk potency, analyzing attributes such as speed and movement direction. When these steps are completed, the system warns the driver.
Recent Developments in Collision Avoidance Systems
Central elements of a collision avoidance system include tracking sensors and tags. New technological developments have made collision avoidance systems more effective, less intrusive for workers, and easier to use and access.
Multiple companies have introduced advanced collision avoidance technologies to the market in recent years, significantly improving the safety and productivity of mining operations. Collision avoidance systems have benefitted from several advancements in mining technology.
Collision algorithms have been approved by satellite positioning. LiDAR enhances the accuracy of obstacle identification and avoidance. Software-based systems provide scalability and customization capabilities for specific customer demands.
Intelligent vision systems have been introduced to enhance the detection capabilities of multiple objects, including people, other vehicles, and hazards. Innovative fatigue-detecting solutions have been developed.
Industry 4.0 is a wide-reaching industrial revolution that has the potential to provide previously unimagined levels of automation and digitization. AI, IoT, and rapidly advancing interconnectivity are influencing multiple technologies in the mining industry, including collision avoidance systems.
The rapidly accelerating uptake of digital technologies has clear benefits for collision avoidance systems. Companies have invested heavily in software-based systems that take advantage of this new paradigm in automation and digitization, significantly enhancing capabilities, worker safety, and productivity.
Current Global Collision Avoidance System Market
According to estimates, the global market in 2020 was worth $47.8 billion. This is predicted to rise to $114.5 billion in 2030.
The main growth in the market is predicted to come from the automotive sector, as well as the growing demand for automated vehicles in industries such as mining.
Europe dominated the collision avoidance system market in 2020, with significant growth projected for 2030. This is mainly due to growth in the defense and aerospace sector. The Asia-Pacific region is also predicted to show strong growth.
According to the latest mine-site survey from GlobalData, 47% of mines have made moderate investments in collision avoidance technologies. A total of 49% of mines surveyed expect to either invest in systems for the first time or invest more heavily over the next couple of years.
In the previous survey by GlobalData in 2020, only 36% of respondents stated that they were planning to invest in collision avoidance systems in the following two years. It is clear that collision avoidance systems are receiving more attention and critical investments are being made in mines to improve safety and productivity.
A total of 138 operating mine sites were surveyed by GlobalData, representing a snapshot of the entire industry’s intentions over the coming years. Fatigue detection was also identified as technology companies want to invest in in the coming years.
OmniPro is an easy-to-use collision avoidance solution provided by Matrix. It requires no pre-installation, making it an ideal choice for operators new to collision avoidance systems.
A key feature of OmniPro is its artificial visual intelligence capabilities. Pedestrians and preselected items, such as stop signs and vehicles in the projected route, can be swiftly identified, alerting the operator to their presence and level of risk.
No tracking devices or equipment tags are needed as OmniPro’s dual-camera system automatically adjusts, monitoring the direction of travel and capturing surroundings. The stand-alone system generates time-stamped pictures to capture objects.
PROX-EYE proximity systems employ LiDAR sensors to provide collision avoidance capabilities in mines. The system can function in direct light, darkness, fog, and dusty environments, making it an all-round collision avoidance system capable of coping with the typical environments found within all types of mines.
HD cameras and on-board AI software alert the driver to potential hazards and objects, reducing the risk of critical accidents and potential loss of life and productivity.
Chilean tech company SITECH develops PROXEYE proximity systems. Commercial distribution has been made possible by an agreement with Correct-AI, a Canadian firm.
Digital Collision Avoidance Systems from Wabtec
Wabtec has developed next-generation digital collision avoidance systems, providing significant advances in sensing capabilities for mining companies. The system enhances user experience and provides companies with EMERST Level 9 vehicle controls.
The system provides enhanced interoperability, allowing manual and autonomous device control integration. The company is working on integrating its solution in vehicles with any protocol.
CAS 10 from Hexagon Mining
Hexagon Mining has introduced a condensed system, CAS 10, which uses just two pieces of hardware: a smart antenna and LCD. Features such as Wi-Fi, GPS, RF, LTE technologies, and ultra-wideband flight time are integrated into the antenna.
A proprietary, contemporary UX in the touch screen, compatible with associated onboard solutions from Hexagon, improves user experience and shortens training and deployment times. The system provides 360o operator awareness, safeguarding the safety of drivers, other mine workers, and equipment.
Future Directions in Collision Avoidance Systems
Several key players in the collision avoidance system market have adopted key strategies, including product portfolio expansion, geographical expansion, research & development investment, and agreements, acquisitions, and mergers. These strategies should enhance growth within the sector.
Technological innovation is key to the evolution of collision avoidance systems, with many new systems on the market incorporating Industry 4.0-associated technologies. As the mining industry adopts these technologies further, collision avoidance systems will become more sophisticated.
The International Council of Metals and Minerals (ICMM) launched its ICSV initiative in 2018 to support the adoption of technologies that will improve vehicle safety in mines. A total of 19 OEMs are participating in this initiative, as well as ICMM members.
The ICSV initiative and other initiatives in the mining industry aim to eliminate vehicle-related fatalities by 2025. Collision avoidance systems are central to this ambition, and indeed, mining companies have stated that adopting these systems is their primary investment aim over the coming decade.
Collision avoidance is a hot-button topic in the mining industry as it attempts to reduce vehicle-related injuries and fatalities. Collision avoidance systems offer enhanced safety, and the market for these technologies is growing rapidly. Hopefully, their adoption can help make mining fatalities largely a thing of the past.
References and Further Reading
GlobalData (2022) Collision avoidance systems a key focus for investment in the next two years [online] mining-technology.com. Available at: https://www.mining-technology.com/comment/collision-avoidance-systems/
Vineet, K & Asavari, P (2022) Collision Avoidance System Market Global Opportunity Analysis and Industry Forecast 2020-2030 [online] alliedmarketresearch.com. Available at: https://www.alliedmarketresearch.com/collision-avoidance-system-market
Ouyang, M (2022) Collision Avoidance System Mining | Integration Of Automated Safety In Mine Vehicles [online] blindspotmonitor.com. Available at: https://www.blindspotmonitor.com/collision-avoidance-system-mining/
Kaelo, O.J et al. (2020) Collision Avoidance Technology: The use of Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) for Safe Mining. Proceedings of the 2nd African International Conference on Industrial Engineering and Operations Management Harare, Zimbabwe [online] ieomsociety.org. Available at: http://ieomsociety.org/harare2020/papers/549.pdf
GII (2022) Collision Avoidance System Market - Forecasts from 2022 to 2027 [online] giiresearch.com. Available at: https://www.giiresearch.com/report/ksi1186871-collision-avoidance-system-market-forecasts-from.html