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Supervision of multiple vehicles in autonomous surface mines through a control room

Mining Engineering , 2011, Vol. 63, No. 11, pp. 80-86

Tenorio, V. O.; Dessureault, S. D.


The implementation of autonomous technologies for production in surface mines demands changes in the existing monitoring and control systems. The present study deals with the concepts involved in the development of a decision support system (DSS) for the supervision of a combined fleet of manned and unmanned equipment operating in a surface mine. The project was carried out as part of an autonomous mining program that lasted from early 2006 until the end of 2008. The objective of the DSS was to achieve short-term planning goals while maintaining safe working conditions. Supervisory tasks become more complex when several autonomous vehicles operate simultaneously alongside manned equipment. The operation center where the DSS was installed allowed autonomous vehicle operations to be controlled while tracking technology reliability. Experiments performed on control display interfaces and interaction provided design parameters for more complex supervisory systems for autonomous mines.