Owing to the possible presence of hazardous methane gas during coal mining, it is common practice to monitor methane levels at operational mining sections. Thus, mining monitoring systems company Monitech’s Hazardous Area Control System was introduced to coal mining 15 years ago and it has been continually developed according to customers’ needs and advancements in technology, making it a mainstay of the industry, Monitech GM Renier Rautenbach tells Mining Weekly.
By law, a methane monitor must be installed on and interlocked with the coal mining machine to prevent production from continuing if the presence of methane above a predetermined level is detected.
Rautenbach explains that one of the benefits of using the system – locally developed, and manufactured at the company’s facility in Benoni, on the East Rand – as opposed to other detection systems, is that it is designed to meet customer-specific requirements. The system’s equipment is also approved to be used specifically in hazardous areas and can be adapted to work on any required mining project. The equipment also has flexible application capabilities, as well as provides Monitech with an opportunity to supply training and skills development for employees and customers, he adds.
“All in-depth system training is provided by Monitech to allow for maximum benefit to production. All underground Monitech support staff are fully qualified underground artisans to ensure the best application-specific support for customers.”
To remain competitive, relevant and dominant in the mining market, Monitech has placed strong emphasis on research and development, where the focus is on developing new solutions and products, and continually improving the performance of existing systems. The company is working on new development areas to meet customer requirements and improve underground safety and production, Rautenbach concludes.