Towards the development of a low cost airborne sensing system to monitor dust particles after blasting at open-pit mine sites

Journal article


Alvarado, Miguel, Gonzalez, Felipe, Fletcher, Andrew and Doshi, Ashray. (2015) Towards the development of a low cost airborne sensing system to monitor dust particles after blasting at open-pit mine sites. Sensors. 15(8), pp. 19667 - 19687. https://doi.org/10.3390/s150819667
AuthorsAlvarado, Miguel, Gonzalez, Felipe, Fletcher, Andrew and Doshi, Ashray
Abstract

Blasting is an integral part of large-scale open cut mining that often occurs in close proximity to population centers and often results in the emission of particulate material and gases potentially hazardous to health. Current air quality monitoring methods rely on limited numbers of fixed sampling locations to validate a complex fluid environment and collect sufficient data to confirm model effectiveness. This paper describes the development of a methodology to address the need of a more precise approach that is capable of characterizing blasting plumes in near-real time. The integration of the system required the modification and integration of an opto-electrical dust sensor, SHARP GP2Y10, into a small fixed-wing and multi-rotor copter, resulting in the collection of data streamed during flight. The paper also describes the calibration of the optical sensor with an industry grade dust-monitoring device, Dusttrak 8520, demonstrating a high correlation between them, with correlation coefficients (R2) greater than 0.9. The laboratory and field tests demonstrate the feasibility of coupling the sensor with the UAVs. However, further work must be done in the areas of sensor selection and calibration as well as flight planning.

KeywordsPM10; monitoring; blasting; fixed-wing UAV; quadcopter; optical sensor
Year2015
JournalSensors
Journal citation15 (8), pp. 19667 - 19687
PublisherMDPI AG
ISSN1424-8220
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.3390/s150819667
Open accessOpen access
Page range19667 - 19687
Research GroupMary MacKillop Institute for Health Research
Publisher's version
License
Place of publicationSwitzerland
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