New frontier discovered in drilling
Some of the leading mining companies in the world are using the latest technology in computer vision to transform smart drills and increase production in their mines and quarries.
Drilling blast holes is currently problematic. Explosive efficiencies are not optimized due to:
- Deviation of the hole in the 360 bore tracking.
- Drill logs to define the material hardness and mud stem.
- General unoptimized location for explosive inefficiencies.
The leaders of the industry are gaining an unfair advantage over production volumes by deploying technologies to optimize efficiencies.
They are using computer vision to empower drill machine operators to digitally pinpoint the optimal location and design a blast hole to the desired depth.
The design hole location sometimes has unforeseen physical characteristics, which requires the smart drill operator to manually adjust the designed-hole’s location. With the latest computer vision technology, this problem is no longer plaguing the leaders of the industry.
How does it all work?
This leading technology is generating accurate location coordinates of every single blast hole on a mining site. This is conducted via photogrammetry data generated by drones, combined with proprietary image analysis using computer vision.
These coordinates coupled with elevation can be uploaded to the smart drill allowing the drill machine operator to find the location design blast hole to the desired depth.
The smart drill operator’s job has been difficult until now. One of the most important features into the blast design photogrammetry software is empowering the operator to download and get modified upload data from the smart drill. The smart drill data can be modified by blast design software. This will allow the blasting engineer to modify his timing and loading factors in one easy platform.
Smart drills : Bridge between physical and digital
Smart drills are equipped with the basics software and hardware in the operating of the bore track device. The bore-tracking device measures the deviations in the drill-hole’s alignment as a function of the direction of compass.
Drill manufacturers needs a simple modification to the drills' mask that will allow a bore-tracking device to be mounted on the drill. This will allow the drill operator to lower the bore-tracking tool into the completed drilled hole. This additional data then can be uploaded to the blast design photogrammetry software.
Smart drills are presently equipped with drill logging capabilities. It is given to the blasting engineer as a PDF, or Excel file. This data coupled with the two above data points will give a complete profile of AS drilled blast-hole in one easy platform.
It is only natural that the drill logs, burden analysis, bore tracking, and hole location being in one platform. In USA, blasting industry uses over 6.7 Billion pounds (AFT 2015) of explosives per annum. The optimization using smart drill acquired data with blast design photogrammetry software is the natural step in the commodity-based industry with ever increasing demands to lower cost and raise production.
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