With an extensive range of mining solutions we aim to get the job done.
Voice communications are critical for improving safety while maximising productivity. The ability to converse in real time with an individual, group, or all personnel simultaneously ensures everyone is working optimally. The development of IP radios and the improvements to VoIP Phones in recent years now mean that voice communications can be very effectively conducted over our NLT Digital network.
Our range of IP voice communication products can be used wherever a WiFi signal is present. This eliminates the need for a secondary, radio-based style solution for voice communications, improving your overall return on investment.
Because they’re digital, the IP radios and phones feature excellent voice quality, while integration with other on-site voice systems is greatly simplified. Our IP radio looks and functions like a standard two-way radio, encouraging user-acceptance. Additionally, our vehicle IP Radio enables communications from within a vehicle cabin.
Fixed phones and intercoms can also be deployed over our N-Connex network to provide communications in fixed locations like offices, workshops, lunch rooms, and other key locations. Rather than being connected via copper, they interface via Ethernet or WiFi to N-Connex.
Personnel & Asset Tracking
NLT’s Tracking solution provides a reliable, detailed and flexible approach to tracking personnel, vehicles and assets throughout the mine. Due to the high speed network, tracking data is passed to the Tracking Server in near real-time. This ensures the information is relevant and usable for mine management, or in the event of an emergency, the safety and rescue teams.
The Tracking System comprises of:
- Tags –WiFi or RFID based tags that are standalone, or internally cap-lamp mounted.
- Readers – either a dedicated Tag Reader, or the N-Connex Bolt can provide this functionality.
- Software – a Graphical User Interface to quickly and easily interpret the data.
- Server – A suitable server to store the database and manage connectivity.
NLT’s Digital Mine Software is designed for Mining applications and is a powerful, user friendly and intuitive software package that offers a range of modules designed to improve both Safety and Productivity. The Tracking module provides a growing range of capabilities inclusive of highly detailed and accurate movement history, the ability to quickly locate individuals or specific functional skills (Eg. Electricians), vehicle movement data inclusive of trip cycle times and emergency management reports.
Enabling Tracking of Personnel and Assets is achieved easily and cost effectively when an N-Connex network is installed.
N-Connex provides a high speed Gigabit fibre backbone to handle the most demanding of data requirements in a mine. Access to the network is provided via Ethernet ports, that support PoE and also WiFi. N-Connex is standards compliant and will allow any device to connect and operate over the network.
From laptops and smartphones through to WiFi enabled PLC’s and tags, high speed data communications are enabled where you need it. Large files can be accessed while underground or transferred automatically to plant. Surveyors can review and update drawings in real time while drill rigs can be uploaded with the latest drill plans. Simpler and more commonly performed tasks such as accessing emails or vendor websites for information can also be performed.
Having access to your servers and potentially the Internet (with appropriate security in place) can overcome the inherent difficulties in working underground and dramatically improve productivity and safety.
Control & Automation
N-Connex provides a reliable and robust data highway that enables both simple telemetry and complex automation of equipment. Monitoring and controlling electrical equipment, like fans and pumps, results in considerable cost savings and improved efficiencies. Similarly, automating equipment saves time, improves safety, and enhances productivity.
Automation can include enabling the automatic starting and stopping of equipment like feeder breakers and conveyors through to supporting automated vehicles. The Gigabit data backbone of the N-Connex combined with our wireless access points, provide the necessary infrastructure to support the most complex automation tasks. Integrating solutions, including tagging, machine control, networks and software, ensure that the automation of tasks is performed safely.
The NLT Digital Network also allows more traditional Input/Output monitoring and control to be achieved. Whether using simple, digital on/off signals or analog measurements the information is easily transferred to our Digital Mine Software – or the site’s SCADA package – for manipulation, display and action.
N-Connex enables all of your underground assets to be monitored and controlled, achieving significant cost savings, increasing productivity, and enhancing safety.
Monitoring vital conditions is critical to making informed production and safety decisions for your operation.
NLT partners with leading-edge providers of Environmental, Ventilation, Gas, and Geotechnical Monitoring Systems to provide solutions that are innovative, reliable and accurate, enhancing operational efficiency and safety.
From local design and manufacture to supply, distribution, service and support, NLT works with our customers and technology partners to ensure you have access to the very best monitoring solutions.
Integrating these systems with your new or existing networking or communications infrastructure enables real-time monitoring. This critical data can be used to automate production and safety processes, or analysed to fully understand the conditions in your operation. We’re integration experts, providing complete solutions that monitor critical conditions on your site. We can connect any monitoring system to your existing software systems, or through NLT Digital Mine Software, giving you access to data at your fingertips.
NLT offers a full range of condition monitoring systems and solutions, including:
- Ultrasonic Ventilation Monitoring for highly accurate airflow and quality measurements with the option for Ventilation on Demand
- Environmental Monitoring of temperature, humidity, pressure, wet bulb, dry bulb, heat stress index, and more, through a range of connected sensors
- Geotechnical Monitoring, including subsidence monitoring and slope/high wall monitoring, to detect the most minute ground movement
- Gas Monitoring
- Software, integration and networking
Vehicle Management enables key statistics to be monitored on any vehicle. The information is obtained from on-board sensors and relayed via WiFi over the N-Connex network. Monitoring your vehicle fleet provides significant benefits to productivity, cost management and also safety. NLT’s partner, Symboticware provide a range of solutions for any vehicle type. Providing a sensor exists to measure a key parameter, then this can be monitored, measured and analysed allowing for improvements to be made. Commonly available parameters include engine hours, temperatures, load cell information, pressures and so forth.
The Symboticware hardware and software is installed on a vehicle and utilises the N-Connex network to provide a data highway to a server. The data is provided via the Symview Server application and can be displayed in Digital Mine software or in other site data historian packages.
Vehicle Management information is always time-stamped and will be relayed to the server whenever in range of the N-Connex WiFi signal.
N-Connex supports the use of IP cameras to monitor key locations in the tunnels) or on surface. The cameras can be connected via Ethernet or Wi-Fi to N-Connex, providing video images in real-time, or on a frame rate that suits the application. N-Connex provides Power over Ethernet (PoE) so that our IP cameras can be connected directly without requiring external power.
While the video images can be accessed via existing site surveillance web servers, NLT can also provide suitable servers to support a full turn-key tunnel video monitoring solution.
Site access can also be tied to video monitoring where required. This can include access gates, tag readers, various tag solutions and software.
Ventilation on Demand
Ventilation On Demand (VOD) enables the mine to modify the ventilation based on real time environmental parameters and also, accurate tracking information. For example, if a vehicle or personnel are working on a level or area and the air-flow monitoring detects insufficient air in the area, additional ventilation fans can be automatically turned on or have their flow rate increased.
VOD can ensure the ventilation is operating efficiently where and when it is needed, without having to leave fans running unnecessarily. This leads to significant cost savings based on energy reductions as ventilation draws significant power and energy.
The VOD solution combines a number of NLT and partner products including air-flow monitoring equipment, tracking data, N-Connex Control modules (PLC’s) and Digital Mine Software. Bringing this data together enables rules to be defined and automation of the Ventilation system to be achieved.
It is not necessary to fully automate the ventilation system, in many cases the simple ability to turn fans on/off from a central position (usually surface) can offer significant daily operational benefits. Combining Digital Mine Software and the N-Connex control modules easily achieves this functionality.
Software & Applications
NLT’s Digital Mine Software is a web-based package that provides controlled access to real time critical data. The user interface while being simple to use and intuitive provides in-depth information that ensures tunnelling operations are conducted safely and efficiently. The data is overlaid on your actual tunnel plans so a user can quickly assess the situation and understand any implications implied by the data. Reporting is comprehensive and easily navigated as well as providing the support for customised templates to be created.
Digital Mine Software also integrates with third party hardware and software to provide increased functionality. Equipment status and system health are easily viewed, while personnel information can be interfaced with other systems, including card access. Any vehicle or tag movement patterns can be monitored, ensuring both the safety and efficiency of your equipment operators.
Some of the innovative features, include:
- Multi-level Map Interface, overhauled with an easy to use Google Maps style overview to track or locate anything, including environmental monitoring points.
- Zone Management – quickly establish zones that cover specific sections of the tunnel(s) to enhance the capabilities of Tracking or Alarm functions.
- Monitor and control equipment based on real time condition monitoring such as fans or pumps.
- Emergency alarm and response management.
Digital Mine will increase efficiencies and productivity of your workforce while also significantly enhancing the overall safety systems.