Convergence monitoring is an important part of overall mine safety management. Comparing multiple scans of the same area taken at intervals can reveal convergence starting to occur and act as an early warning system that allows engineers to assess the risks and take appropriate action where necessary. Traditionally, the process of gathering information has been slow, and so has processing the data. Having to manually align two or more scans can be time-consuming (and can possibly introduce errors).
A simple way to solve both these problems is to use the uGPS Rapid Mapper™ 3D mobile underground scanner to do the actual scanning, and then to perform an automated comparison of the scan results using the supplied and recently improved convergence monitoring workflow.
The latest release of the workflow, based on the proven target alignment method developed in 2017 and enhanced by an updated software tool, allows engineers to compare scans of the identical area but taken on different days with just a few mouse clicks. This process is an invaluable part of spotting and reacting to instances of convergence that are occurring, or threatening to occur, within the mine.
Hundreds of metres of drifts can be simultaneously analzed for convergence – rapidly and automatically, with full area-to-area comparisons, rather than the simple point-to-point comparisons of more traditional solutions. This gives mine engineers the data they need to monitor convergence and keep the mine safe and fully productive by being able to react faster and make better decisions based on better data.