Partnership Between GE and Optalert Improves Mine Safety with Data

GE Mining will be working with Optalert to improve mine safety.

(Image courtesy of Optalert.)

(Image courtesy of Optalert.)

GE Mining has moved to combine its efforts with Optalert to create a safer and more efficient environment for mining operations.

The GE Collision Avoidance System (CAS) uses a very low frequency (VLF) magnetic system, which enables detection around corners and through strata underground, and provides alerts to potential collisions between people and heavy equipment before they happen.

Above ground, GE’s CAS Surface can be used with a variety of proximity detection methods, including GPS, radio frequency (RF), VLF magnetic, and cameras, to create a network of tracking capabilities. 

These GE systems use an array of analytics and reporting tools that provide back-to-base reporting and real-time data connectivity to monitor and manage operator behavior and provide more safety throughout a site.

Optalert, which is known for its drowsiness detection systems, will now be working in concert with GE Mining’s CAS. This brings even more data into the equation when determining how the CAS operates.

We’re all familiar with the idea that organizations want to operate as efficiently and safely as possible. The coordination between Optalert and GE’s CAS provides the ability to detect and prevent collisions even sooner than either of the systems alone could. 

Optalert CEO Scott Coles said, “Effectively, that means our quantifiable drowsiness score can help regulate the tolerance of collision avoidance, so if a driver is less alert, the distance allowed for collision avoidance would be increased.”

Coles continued, “Optalert’s technology concentrates on the driver, not just their behavior, and can detect when a person is more at risk of becoming a drowsy driver, rather than wake a person who has fallen asleep. No other technology working in this space is able to measure drowsiness with any objective accuracy.”

The future of almost all operations, whether in mining, manufacturing or other industries, is headed in this direction. Adding connectivity and data to processes not only makes those operations safer but also much more efficient. Data like that which GE and Optalert are gathering is beginning to close the gap between machine monitoring and human interaction, providing new ways to provide safety and automate.