Mining Contract: Engineered Solutions - Dump Truck Vibrations and Impact on Operator Safety in High-Impact Shovel Loading Operations
This contract aims to reduce or eliminate the impact of root mean square (RMS) accelerations due to vibrations on large dump truck operators during high-impact shovel loading operations (HISLO). Experiencing severe truck vibrations during HISLOs can lead to operator injuries, and the contract objectives include improving operator seats and shock absorption in large dump trucks to reduce vibration and improve operator safety and health.
Contract Status & Impact
Heavy mining machinery has exposed the human body to extreme conditions that affect operator health and system performance. Shovels load large dump trucks with 100-ton passes. This high-impact shovel loading operation (HISLO) causes severe truck vibrations that expose operators to whole body vibrations (WBV). Operators exposed to WBV with RMS values = 1.0 m/s2 over 8-hour durations have a high probability of experiencing sacrum, lumbar, and cervical problems (ISO, 2004). Operators are also exposed to significant WBV levels during the haulage process. The vibrations caused by haul road problems, such as ruggedness, pot holes, craters, and trenches are significant but lower than WBV magnitudes under HISLO conditions (Aldinger et al., 1995). Thus, the solution of the HISLO problems will also minimize or eliminate the exposure of operators to extreme WBV levels.
This contract aims to reduce or eliminate the impact of root mean square (RMS) accelerations due to vibrations on large dump truck operators during high-impact shovel loading operations (HISLO) by meeting the contract objectives to develop the following:
- A re-engineered operator seat to reduce the impact of RMS accelerations.
- Impulse force reduction technology to reduce the magnitudes of generated shockwaves.
- An impulse force-ground conditioned calibrator for increasing the amounts of absorbed shockwaves into the ground.
- Enhanced engineered add-on suspension systems to absorb significant levels of shockwaves.
- An aging truck suspension efficiency calibrator to improve the shockwave absorbing efficiency of aging trucks.