Hazardous area and emergency lighting specialist, MineGlow, has launched a new, interoperable emergency lighting system, em-Control, to, it says, improve miner safety and preparedness in the event of emergency evacuations.
With several systems already deployed across New Zealand, Australia and West Africa, em-Control is an intelligent, network-based solution that warns and directs an underground workforce to safety with multi-directional light pulses and colours.
The system comprises of em-Lighting, the LED light strip, em-View, a web-based interface and em-Controller, a network-based controller that integrates with third-party systems via an open API. em-Lighting is powered by x-Glo LED strip lights, while the em-Controller is a MineGlow innovation designed for the em-Control system.
Installed throughout a mine’s underground tunnel network, em-Control alerts workers instantaneously of an emergency and directs the best way to designated exits, rescue chambers or other safe areas.
MineGlow General Manager, Carinne Pater, said em-Control is the only emergency LED strip lighting system on the market that is fully configurable, giving mine sites greater flexibility for different applications and the type of safety warning needed.
“We use high illumination to communicate critical information to underground teams, helping to maximise safety, suppress panic and provide comfort in high-stress, dangerous environments,” she said. “The system operates on high sight impact rather than sound, making it perfect for smoke-filled or low light conditions.”
Designed and engineered by MineGlow for tough industrial conditions, the IP65-rated, shock-proof em-Controller integrates with third-party systems used in hazardous and industrial applications such as traffic management, zone identification, vehicle awareness and seismic activity.
“With built-in network capability and an open architecture, multiple safety systems can communicate with em-Control to provide an additional layer of safety and protection,” Pater said.
“When a safety event or incident occurs, the em-Controller receives the information and triggers the em-Lighting LED strip to emit a pre-programmed colour, direction and pulse sequence.
“For example, the system can communicate critical information such as the severity of ground movement or type of emergency while informing workers of the direction of travel for a seamless evacuation.”
One control unit can control up to 500 m of LED strip lighting, significantly reducing lighting infrastructure set up costs.
The em-Control system, which has already been deployed in tunnel construction environments, can be configured to work effectively with a mine’s existing network infrastructure or activated manually where network connectivity is not available, via various activation points throughout the mine.
“The flexibility of our em-Lighting LED strip lights enables miners to install them easily and onto any fixed or mobile surface and at any height,” Pater said.