Drone in Mining Industries

Drone in Mining Industries

Drone in Mining Industries : Drone technology is an important tool in Mining Industries which helps in the day to day business operations. Drone have gone a long way in improving the efficiency and affordability of mining project around the world which requires a lot of detailed and accurate data for mining operations. Using drones on a large mine site improves the overall efficiency and management by providing accurate and comprehensive data of the site condition in a very short time.  Ground survey method which will take a lot of time and energy in capturing data in mining industries is being drastically replaced by the use of drones due to its efficiency and speed, speed in the sense that work is being done faster using drone. What might take hours or days to achieve using the conventional method can be done within minutes.

A lot of information can be generated using aerial images like the general site overview, road connection to the mines, and the topographic details which are achieved within some few minute using of drones. According to Kayode Omolaye, the CEO, Geospatial Research Limited, a leading drone company in Nigeria in Nigeria, emphasis that reduction of cost and collection of timely georeferenced data is an essential benefit in the use of the drone. Using helicopters requires human pilot on board and many other facilities needed for the photogrammetric process and image capturing. This increases the risks which can comes as a result of crash of the aircraft, though its actually rear, and running short of resources due to the high cost associated with the use of helicopter and normal ground survey method.

Some Application of drones in Mining Industries

  • Stockpile Management: Stockpile which is the storage location for bulk materials like sand, using the traditional method of survey will require the surveyor to climb up and down and move around the stockpile and also being subjected to weather and dust hazards. Aerial surveying using drones removes the person away from the work area and allows surveying to take place without interrupting of the mining process. It also helps in the estimation of volume with great precision. The drone aerial images can be used to generate a Point Cloud, Digital Terrain Model(DTM), Digital Surface Model(DSM) and also the 3D reconstruction of the site including its stockpiles.
  • Haulage Roads:Transportation of ore, coal, supplies and waste is a routine in the mining industry. The haul road can be accessed through the aerial images of the site. Providing valuable data like haul road length, width, slope and curve angles and allowing the road to be checked to know whether it meets the required standard.
  • Environmental and Safety Compliance: By acquiring data, using the aerial image, the mining operation can ensure environmental compliance to local regulations.
  • Site Inspection and Monitoring: Inspection can be carried out using drone by capturing of image and videos of the mining industries unlike previously when people carry out inspection activities under hazardous conditions. Using drones for inspections can save cost and provide safety for the people.
  • Geotechnical Modelling
  • Drilling and Blasting
  • Security and Emergency Response

Benefits of using drone in mining

  • Helps to improve productivity: With the help of drone, productivity increases due to the fast and easy way of operation and at a fraction of the cost compared to the conventional method of survey.
  • Providing safety: the safety of using drone is nowhere to the compared to the ground survey method. Climbing up and down the stockpile is totally avoided, reducing the risk involved.
  • Easy and fast survey: capturing data with a drone is up to 30 times faster than with the conventional based method. It does not require the presence of the surveyor on site which makes it easy for survey mining process
  • Low cost: using drone can reduce cost to an affordable percentage.

Don’t forget to contact, Geospatial Research Limited, the leading drone services, land surveying and GIS consultancy company in Nigeria for the above stated services with good customer experience.  

Please see our post about the use of drone for insurance.