Tag Archives: GroundProbe

GroundProbe chooses Tucson for location of second manufacturing facility

GroundProbe has announced plans to build a second dedicated manufacturing facility in Tucson, Arizona, USA, marking a new chapter in its commitment to better serve its customers in the Northern hemisphere.

The expansion of GroundProbe’s manufacturing capabilities comes following significant growth in recent years.

Announcing its plans at the recent International Slope Stability Symposium in Arizona, GroundProbe CEO, David Noon, said the new facility will open its doors in early 2023.

“As our global footprint and customer base continues to grow, so too does the volume and variety of products that we produce,” he said. “We saw it as an absolute necessity to bolster our offering and extend our manufacturing capability from Asia Pacific to the Americas.

“It means that, from early 2023, we will be able to more readily deploy our safety-critical systems – systems that are integral to their ongoing operations and productivity – to our Northern hemisphere customers.”

GroundProbe, which currently manufactures its products in Australia, says it is widely accepted as the global leader in real-time technologies that detect instabilities and predict when mine and dam collapses will occur.

The addition of a second manufacturing facility signifies an important step for GroundProbe’s future growth, especially for North and South America, for GroundProbe’s Chief Commercial Officer and VP Americas, Ben Moke.

“When scouting locations for a second site, Tucson quickly became the preferred location,” Moke said. “It’s central to our customers, and it’s close to a number of geotechnical consulting firms and university partners, including the Geotechnical Center of Excellence at the University of Arizona.

“It’s going to be fantastic to have a facility where the geotechnical community can experience our state-of-the-art technology being manufactured and deployed to mine sites across the Americas. With a track record that speaks for itself, GroundProbe’s technologies are the industry’s most robust and reliable, having never failed to detect a collapse.

“The second facility will manufacture every one of our products to the same level of quality that we are known for and that is expected of us as market leaders.”

GroundProbe cancels out atmospheric ‘noise’ with new slope stability monitoring algorithm

A collaboration with mining operations across the globe has resulted in the development of a new atmospheric correction algorithm for Slope Stability Radar (SSR) that, GroundProbe says, provides a step change in the way atmospherics are treated and managed.

Precision Atmospherics is the most advanced correction algorithm in the market today, according to the company, able to distinguish and significantly reduce the noise caused by the most turbulent atmospheric conditions, providing a decisively clearer picture of real deformation.

It is the result of several years of rigorous development, testing and evolution, and represents one of the most significant research and development projects GroundProbe has ever undertaken, the company says. GroundProbe partnered with a global collection of mines in different climatic regions in the extensive validation program, including one of the largest open-pit mines in the world, Rio Tinto Kennecott’s Bingham Canyon copper mine in Utah, the US.

Rio Tinto Kennecott’s Senior Engineer, Geotech, Dustin Hicks, has been part of Precision Atmospherics development and testing since 2019, when first presented to Kennecott’s Bingham Canyon mine.

“GroundProbe delivered an SSR-Omni equipped with Precision Atmospherics to Bingham Canyon to demonstrate its capability in the rapidly changing atmospheric environment that our site experiences,” Hicks said.

“The Precision Atmospherics algorithm effectively managed a variety of atmospheric conditions including blast and wind induced dust plumes, rain and snow, which resulted in significantly less contaminated data.

“It reduced the noise on a scan-by-scan basis, which opens the door for tighter alarm configurations that would otherwise overburden the geotechnical team.”

In complex atmospheres, especially at large mines, atmospheric variability can hinder the ability to detect early-stage movement.

Precision Atmospherics is currently available on GroundProbe’s 2D Real Aperture Radars fleet. The combination of real aperture technologies with this algorithm allows mine sites to have better deformation detection capability in all seasons and conditions, according to the company.

GroundProbe’s Chief Executive Officer, David Noon, said Precision Atmospherics is a game changer in tracking both slow and rapid trends.

“With the smoother plots and cleaner maps that Precision Atmospherics provides, customers can focus their attention on recently started or slow-moving deformation,” he said. “This is important for gleaning the potentially significant geotechnical problems that can only be detected through long-term analysis.

“Both rapid and slow trends are shown in a single data set, and unlike other techniques, there is no post-processing required to detect slow movements.”

Alberto Cabrejo, GroundProbe’s Global Practice Lead – Geotechnical Advisory, added: “Precision Atmospherics is the most important addition to the monitoring practice using interferometric radars. It responds directly to the most important request from Geotechnical Engineers around the world: data quality.

“With this algorithm, we can finally use tight alarms appropriate for rock mass deformation rather than alarms that will not be triggered by weather changes.”

GroundProbe and Orica collaborate on ‘world-first’ BlastVision solution

GroundProbe, a member of the Orica Group, has launched BlastVision®, a world-first solution that, it says, delivers actionable blast performance insights for optimal safety and productivity.

The crucial data aids in the detection of potential misfires and out-of-sequence firing and in identifying and tracking fly rock, according to the company. Intra-blast monitoring also adds valuable wall control insights, such as monitoring and mapping instantaneous blast damage to slopes and identifying movement on significant structures.

GroundProbe, a specialist in geotechnical monitoring, leveraged the partnership with Orica, a leading mining and blasting solutions provider, to gain information around current blast monitoring methods through interviews with engineers, according to GroundProbe CEO, David Noon.

“Through talking to mine site engineers responsible for blasting on the ground, we identified that many sites were still using quite simple and sometimes unsafe methods for blast analysis.

“Techniques included recording blasts with ground-based camera systems and conducting visual inspections of this footage to determine areas of concern.

“From this, the idea of using drone footage and automated algorithms to quickly identify key areas of interest was born.”

BlastVision takes custom high-speed drone footage of a blast as it happens, using world-first advanced proprietary algorithms and modern AI frameworks to convert the footage into analytics data, according to GroundProbe. Data is then remotely analysed in its custom software platform, with insights swiftly reported back to the site. From these insights, mine site personnel can optimise blasting and monitor the impacts of blasting, improving both safety and productivity, the company said.

The solution has been tested, trialled or demonstrated across over 60 mine sites around the globe, positively impacting hundreds of drill and blast team members across these mine sites, according to GroundProbe.

GroundProbe’s VP – Technology, Fernanda Carrea, said that no other solution provides the range of insights from the whole blast area that BlastVision provides, from start to finish.

“BlastVision provides an increased level of safety, efficiency, accuracy and productivity through our software algorithm automatically identifying key areas and issues,” Carrea said.

“Data is also able to be captured before, during and after a blast, and covers the blast area in its entirety.

“We can proudly say that this patent-pending technology is a world first.”

GroundProbe reflects on geohazard monitoring developments on 20th anniversary

GroundProbe says it is immensely proud to be celebrating 20 years of operation and 20 years of keeping people and communities safe.

Over the last two decades, the company has expanded from a home-grown start-up to become a global innovation powerhouse and the trusted partner of companies around the world, it said.

GroundProbe calls itself a global leader in real-time geohazard monitoring technologies that help manage risk, ensure safety and increase productivity across mining and civil projects. Evolving from a PhD project at the University of Queensland, Australia, in 1993, by 2001, GroundProbe’s founders commercialised the world’s first patented Slope Stability Radar (SSR), which is now widely used to monitor mine walls and warn before collapses occur.

GroundProbe CEO and founder, David Noon, said that the success of GroundProbe’s business and its continual year-on-year growth is built on a culture of innovation and customer intimacy that permeates through every level of the company.

“GroundProbe has now deployed more than 700 systems and support services to customers in more than 35 countries,” he said. “To get to that level, we have proudly built long-term, trusted relationships with the top 20 mining and resources companies, globally.

“Across all of those deployed radars and customers, and in our entire 20-year history, I am most proud to say that we have fulfilled our ultimate goal by making mining safer. Our technology has never failed to detect a collapse, ultimately saving numerous lives.”

Anglo American’s Head of Geotechnical – T&S Group Mining, Lesley Munsamy, recently stated that the company is honoured to have played a part in GroundProbe’s history. The miner celebrated a number of “firsts” with GroundProbe, with the capturing of the first ever slope deformation data, the detection of the first ever slope failure and the first international radar deployment at Anglo American mine sites, GroundProbe said.

“Our mutually-beneficial partnership is based on GroundProbe’s impeccable safety track record and continuous innovation of its hardware and software tools,” Munsamy said. “The precise and valuable data that GroundProbe provides our sites has had an impact on our safety and productivity by enhancing our risk-management practices.

“GroundProbe redefined the slope risk management practices across the world. The availability of reliable real-time monitoring has had a significant impact on safety, a contribution that cannot be underestimated.”

GroundProbe offers Brazilian customers dedicated geotechnical monitoring option

GroundProbe has opened a dedicated Geotechnical Support Service (GSS) monitoring centre in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, to, it says, better serve its growing customer base in the country.

The centre will provide 24/7 real-time remote radar and laser monitoring services for mine slopes and tailings dams.

The centre joins GroundProbe’s two existing high-tech monitoring centres in Santiago, Chile, and Balikpapan, Indonesia, to provide support in four languages – Portuguese, Spanish, English and Bahasa.

Monitoring live stability data and reacting to alarms to ensure the maximum safety of people and communities, the centre connects remote sites with geotechnical industry experts in real time, GroundProbe says. The centres are crewed by more than 100 highly experienced engineers and radar operators with extensive radar knowledge and experience.

GroundProbe, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Orica, is widely accepted as a global leader in real-time technologies used to detect instabilities and predict when mine and dam collapses will occur.

GroundProbe CEO, David Noon, said that the company had witnessed a huge increase in demand for remote geotechnical expertise in Brazil.

“We saw it as an absolute necessity to bolster our offering and extend our support services to the region,” he said.

“The state-of-the-art centre provides the most technologically advanced solution for remote monitoring in the region and shows our level of commitment to our customers there.

“It leans on our five-and-a-half years of remote monitoring experience, our recognised systems and processes and our established resourcing model, all of which ensures the highest level of data integrity and service availability.”

GroundProbe Head of Geotechnical, Peter Saunders, explained how the service’s positive results and statistics speak for themselves.

“Together, our GSS team have detected and provided early notification to site of 1,440 slope failures, validated 3,615 alarms and managed 44,608 unwanted alarms,” Saunders said.

“GroundProbe also has the world’s largest library of wall folders. Our experts have unprecedented access to this data, gaining a unique perspective on geotechnical monitoring borne from analysing thousands of slope failures and assisting with numerous incident investigations.”

This newest monitoring centre in Belo Horizonte will provide the same services to customers, including: GSS-Remote, GroundProbe’s 24-hour remote monitoring solution; GSS-Training, its specialised SSR and laser training service; and GSS-Reporting, the company’s customised analysis and reporting service.

GroundProbe reacts to geohazard monitoring concerns with RGR-Velox

GroundProbe says it has launched the industry’s most advanced doppler radar for reactive geohazard monitoring, the RGR-Velox.

RGR-Velox (Reactive Geohazard Radar) is a military-precision reactive monitoring and alarming system for tailings dam breaches, large slope failures, landslides and avalanches. It detects, tracks and alarms on moving geohazards in real time, keeping people, assets and communities safe by giving warning of a breach or collapse, GroundProbe, an Orica subsidiary, explained.

The RGR-Velox is the latest technology to be born out of GroundProbe’s Research and Development (R&D) and product development programs, and the most recent innovation to be added to the company’s fleet of technologies and services.

This is GroundProbe’s first product release in reactive monitoring, with the company now offering both predictive and reactive monitoring technologies. Its predictive monitoring solutions (Slope Stability Radars and lasers) detect and warn people and communities of impending mine collapses, dam failures, rockfalls and landslides. The RGR-Velox, a reactive monitoring solution, tracks and alarms on already moving geohazards, post-collapse, giving early warning to take action or evacuate through alarm outputs such as lights, sirens, pagers or phones.

GroundProbe CEO, David Noon, said the company has a customer-oriented approach to innovation and technology which has led to the development of this reactive monitoring solution.

“GroundProbe already has the industry’s broadest range of geotechnical monitoring technologies and services, yet we continually strive to design and develop new solutions to best meet our customers’ needs,” he said. “This technology was a true collaboration between many facets of our organisation, a valued customer and a key partner.

“By having our customers actively participate in our product development process, we are able to co-create value and produce the most beneficial solution offering.”

The RGR-Velox is the highest precision, fastest scanning and longest range doppler radar in the market, according to the company. Military-grade hardware is combined with GroundProbe’s safety-critical software, alarming and systems to provide, it says, unrivalled confidence.

GroundProbe’s VP Technology, Fernanda Carrea, said the RGR-Velox sets the new standard in emergency geohazard monitoring.

“The RGR-Velox sweep-scans an entire area instantly, much like taking a radar photograph, to capture actionable information as it happens and provide new details of the scene every 0.25 seconds,” Carrea said. “Perhaps most impressive is the device’s ability to differentiate and locate small moving objects with precise accuracy, even when moving at just 0.05 m/s.

“Its alarming capabilities are completely customisable, ensuring users are empowered to design alarms tailored entirely to their specific site challenges and conditions.”

Noon said this latest piece of technology reinforces GroundProbe’s number one value and commitment to safety.

“At GroundProbe, we aim to keep people, assets and communities safe through better risk management and the RGR-Velox is the ultimate assistant in reactive safety monitoring.”

GroundProbe’s SSR-Omni slope stability tech recognised at AEEA event

GroundProbe has taken out Queensland’s top award at the Australian Engineering Excellence Awards (AEEA), hosted by industry body Engineers Australia.

The awards recognise and celebrate Australia’s top engineering projects and the engineering teams behind them.

GroundProbe received this award for its SSR-Omni technology. The SSR-Omni is the world’s leading Slope Stability Radar (SSR) technology for monitoring and detecting movement and potential collapses across open-pit mines and tailings dams, GroundProbe says.

GroundProbe’s Head of Product Development, Fernanda Carrea, said: “Our product development department is comprised of a world-class team of engineers across a breadth of engineering disciplines, all working towards a common goal; ensuring maximum safety for our customers through trailblazing technology.

“It’s exciting and humbling for our engineers to be recognised by their peers as experts in their field for their excellent work. The award is especially meaningful considering it’s across all engineering disciplines and industries, not just within our particular focus.”

GroundProbe focuses on real-time technologies that help manage risk, ensure safety and increase productivity across mining and civil projects. In 18 years, the company has grown from a PhD project at the University of Queensland into the global technology and innovation powerhouse it is today.

The SSR-Omni is GroundProbe’s full-coverage, high-resolution system.

Using embedded super-computing on a chip, the SSR-Omni scan processes over 600 MB of raw data down to a fraction of the size, while proprietary algorithms also predict the time of collapse and display the data in 2D and 3D visualisations. The day-night camera system can stream multiple video feeds at different zoom levels back to the user for real-time inspections, according to the company.

GroundProbe’s VP Technology, Lachlan Campbell, said GroundProbe has always been at the forefront of innovation but prides itself on adapting its tried-and-tested mechanical engineering experience to solve new problems.

“Due to catastrophic tailings dam failures resulting in devastating loss of life, the market was looking for a solution to ensure maximum safety for their facilities and surrounding communities,” Campbell said. “We developed a technology that covers the broadest of areas, detecting miniscule movement at the earliest possible time. In 40 seconds, the SSR-Omni scans 360° and takes 37 million measurements in a 11.2 km diameter, showing movement of rock and ground of 0.1 mm precision.”

The SSR-Omni has been successfully deployed to mining customers around the globe, including sites across Australia, North America, South America and Africa.

Engineers Australia Queensland Division Manager, Stacey Rawlings, said of GroundProbe’s award-winning technology: “The SSR-Omni pioneering approach has created a world leading solution for stability monitoring of pits and tailings dams and is a worthy nominee to represent Queensland at the national awards.”

GroundProbe has also been selected as a finalist for the Sir William Hudson Award – the highest honour for a project awarded by Engineers Australia. The Pinnacle Awards Ceremony will be held in November where the Sir William Hudson Award and National Engineer of the Year Award will be announced.

GroundProbe’s GML geotechnical monitoring tool wins IET award

GroundProbe is celebrating taking out the Technology Transfer Award at the 2019 Institution of Engineering Technology (IET) Innovation Awards in London.

The event seeks to acknowledge and celebrate pioneering innovations across the breadth of science, engineering and technology, according to GroundProbe, with the technology transfer award recognising “perception-shifting innovations that demonstrate effective use of existing technology from one sector to another in an alternative way”.

GroundProbe was recognised for its GML technology. Proven in underground mines as a geotechnical monitoring tool, the GML was adapted for civil projects where it reduces the environmental impact and cost of tunnelling through reduced shotcrete use, according to the Orica subsidiary.

The GML system is a high-speed computing and LiDAR technology that provides live feedback to aid efficient tunnel construction. It scans the tunnel or civil project under construction, determining areas of non-compliance for real time remediation. It produces 14 million point results in less than two minutes, according to the company, ensuring the highest quality data is gathered in the fastest time possible.

Benny Chen, GroundProbe’s Manager – Product Innovation and Commercial, said: “In an industry first, the GML is able to guide construction crews to spray to the desired thickness or design profile on-the-fly in real-time.

“With live, actionable information, the innovation significantly reduces shotcrete usage and rework during construction.

“We have proven to reduce shotcrete usage in tunnel projects by 30%, translating to huge environmental and cost benefits,” Chen said.

GroundProbe CEO, Brian Gillespie, said it was an honour to receive international recognition from the IET.

“I am immensely proud of our technology team, who conceived, designed, developed and commercialised this solution for cross-industry applications, all from our company headquarters in Australia.

“Across the world, GroundProbe technologies and our people that build them are making tunnels, underground and open-cut mines and tailings dams safer and improving the way we work,” he said.

Commercialised, patented and proven, the GML has been successfully tested in several major tunnel construction projects in Australia and is currently being demonstrated across the Nordics and Asia.

GroundProbe aggregates geotechnical data with MonitorIQ

GroundProbe says it has launched a new data aggregation software for geotechnical sensor monitoring, MonitorIQ.

MonitorIQ is, according to the Orica-owned company, feature-rich allowing users to collate and compare data from more than 120 sensor types on one platform including the suite of radar, laser and vibration monitors provided by GroundProbe. It also allows users to compare data from prisms, piezometers, drones, temperature readers, air pressure measurement, and many other sensor types.

The all-new software can also consolidate data across multiple sites be they mines, tailings dams, natural landscape hazards or other built structures, according to the company.

“Through the centralisation of all monitoring data into one dashboard and analysis platform, MonitorIQ revolutionises how users consolidate sensor data to correlate and identify trends, ensuring confident decision making,” GroundProbe said.

Brian Gillespie, GroundProbe’s CEO, said the development of MonitorIQ is the result of its customers using many different sensors to gather various types of information.

GroundProbe said: “More than just a data aggregation platform, MonitorIQ comes built-for-purpose with GroundProbe’s patented geotechnical analysis software, SSR-Viewer, fully embedded.

“This gives users the freedom to access SSR-Viewer’s all-inclusive suite of visualisations and safety-critical charting and alarming tools, on-the-fly, direct from MonitorIQ.”

GroundProbe is part of Orica Monitor – a newly formed division of Orica – dedicated to providing advanced monitoring technology solutions across both the mining and civil industries. MonitorIQ, meanwhile, is the latest addition to Orica’s suite of leading digital technology solutions.

Lachlan Campbell, GroundProbe’s VP of Marketing and Technology, said: “MonitorIQ completely eliminates the need for users to switch between multiple platforms when working with any data collected on-site. This combined with SSR-Viewer’s deep dive analysis capability presents an interface that is integrated and intuitive.”

He added: “Safety has been and always will be our number one priority, and this solution will ensure efficient and effective decision-making to provide maximum safety.”

James Usherwood, Product Manager for MonitorIQ, said: “MonitorIQ has definitely transformed the way we view, interact and report on data. Where MonitorIQ will go in the future will definitely change the way the mining and civil construction sectors monitor hazardous areas.”

MonitorIQ is currently being rolled out globally across the GroundProbe customer network, which spans 30 countries.

GroundProbe extends Americas mine, tailings dam monitoring reach with Santiago centre

GroundProbe has launched a dedicated monitoring centre in Santiago, Chile, to, it says, provide 24/7 real-time radar and laser monitoring services for tailings dams and mines throughout North and South America.

The centre connects remote sites with industry experts in three languages, according to GroundProbe, with the facility monitoring live slope stability data and reacting to alarms to ensure the maximum safety of people and communities.

Crewed by 45 specialised geotechnical engineers, these centre provide 24/7 expertise to over 30 customers globally, GroundProbe says.

GroundProbe, owned by Orica, is a global leader in real-time technologies used to detect instabilities and predict when mine and dam collapses will occur.

From a launch event in Santiago, GroundProbe CEO Brian Gillespie said the new centre marked an important step for GroundProbe’s future growth, especially for South and North America.

“We’ve witnessed a boom in Brazil for continuous, real-time monitoring of tailings dams, with a huge increase in demand for our remote, 24/7 geotechnical expertise,” Gillespie said.

“We saw it as an absolute necessity to bolster our offering and extend our support services from Asia Pacific to the Americas.

“Placing the centre in Santiago and ensuring its tri-lingual capabilities allows us to do just that.”

GroundProbe has, for many years, been providing 24/7 assistance to customers from its Asia-Pacific monitoring centre. The addition of a second location, operating in Spanish, Portuguese and English, sees GroundProbe remain at the forefront of our industry, the company said.

David Noon, COO of GroundProbe, said: “Our Santiago remote monitoring centre is operational from day one, with our teams already monitoring many tailings dams, a massive hydro-electric dam and even a landslide on a national highway in Colombia.

“Not only is it essential to our customers that our team are native Spanish and Portuguese speakers, but having a centre in Latin America shows our level of commitment to the region and to creating jobs in the local communities we serve.”

To mark the launch, GroundProbe and Orica hosted an event with key customers, industry representatives and stakeholders (pictured).

GroundProbe’s monitoring centres are home to its Geotechnical Support Services (GSS) team and dedicated team of geotechnical support engineers.

The second monitoring centre in Santiago will provide the same services to customers, including: GSS-Remote, a 24-hour remote monitoring solution; GSS-Training, a SSR and laser training service; and GSS-Reporting, the company’s customised analysis and reporting service.