QSSTUDIO created the software that has gone into the smart instrumentation solution delivered by SCT Operations.
Safety has always been an integral part of the Australian mining industry. While roof falls remain a major risk, early detection is possible using sensors to alert mine workers of potentially dangerous roof conditions, ideally before a roof fall occurs.
Our client, SCT Operations, has been providing a consultancy service and instrumentation to the mining industry for almost 35 years. During this time, the industry has undergone a digital transformation phase with instrumentation evolving from analogue to digital. This has resulted in more accurate field data that is accessed more frequently.
In 2021, we were engaged by SCT Operations to deliver software that would integrate with their new smart displacement sensor hardware. The project objective was to create a system that would allow users to remotely monitor roof displacements of underground mine access roadways and production areas from the mine surface. The solution involved a mix of IoT sensors and interfacing software. This then enables automatic collection and storage of data as well as having the benefits of remote system monitoring without needing to physically check the individual sensors.
For this project, we worked closely with the client to bring their concepts to life via our user-focused design and by providing expertise and guidance on best industry practices whilst working within the project constraints.
Examples of constraints included limited connectivity and security concerns. As a result, our solution needed to be operable in an “offline” server mode as well as cloud based mode, depending on specific client requirements.
Collaborating with a hardware team, QSSTUDIO completed three important pieces of software that provided effective user programming and monitoring capabilities:
1. RockSHIELD App: A tablet application used for communicating directly with instruments, allowing a user to configure sensors, read sensor data and create CSV data exports.
2. RockSHIELD Platform: A platform composed of multiple microservices, used for collecting sensor data via underground Wi-Fi networks, threshold detection and hierarchical management of instruments across an entire mine network.
3. RockSHIELD Web: An intuitive web dashboard that enables users to monitor sensor readings and problematic locations in the mine.
We have included the following useful features in RockSHIELD web:
Real time alerts when sensor readings breach pre-determined threshold limits
3D interactive map of the sensor locations within the mine, so users can quickly view locations of concern.
RockSHIELD is currently operational at a hardrock mine in Australia. The solution was well received by end users.