Integrating Radar Proximity Sensing and Camera Vision to Improve Mining Equipment Safety with Minimal Distraction

APCOM 2009
Nima Ziraknejad , Arya Ohadi , Shahram Tafazoli,
Abstract Shovels and excavators have significant blind spots due to their large sizes, increasing the chances of collision with other surrounding equipment such as haul trucks, loaders, and dozers. While a camera surveillance system is very useful in preventing collision, it can benefit from two additional features: (i) the ability to display the distance of the closest object within the view, and more importantly (ii) the ability to warn the operator if objects are getting too close. After a comparison between few different technologies, it is explained how these features can be provided by integrating rugged pulsar radar sensors with a camera system. The specific radar technology is already field proven in the harsh mining environments. Motion Metrics International Corp. has developed this exact product, which combines its 4-camera surveillance system (ViewMetricsTM) with a series of rugged radar sensor elements, named ViewMetricsTM-Radar. The radar system employs intelligent CAN bus communication to reduce wiring, hence improving hardware reliability with built-in troubleshooting features. A USB connection is the only hardware bridge between the radar sensors and the embedded computer. As such, an existing ViewMetricsTM system can be easily upgraded to ViewMetricsTM-Radar. As addition of new interfaces to the cab could result in operator distraction, this paper explains how ViewMetricsTM-Radar reduces distraction compared to other radar collision prevention systems.
Keywords: Radar, collision, ToothMetrics-Plus, surveillance, vision, Shovel, blind spot, Haul Trucks, Mining, CAN-bus
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