Mining Contract: Automation Experience with a Global Perspective - An Assessment of the Automation Impact on Worker Safety and Health

Keywords: Automation
Contract # 75D30120C09628
Start Date 9/1/2020
Research Concept

The objective of the research team is (1) to determine and describe the global experience with automation in mining to identify gaps in the body of knowledge related to safety and health impacts of the automation transition, and (2) to inform future prioritized and targeted research in mining in the coming five years. The ultimate objective is to inform future decision-making in relation to protecting the health and safety of workers as they deploy, use, and maintain the subject technology for autonomous systems and automatically controlled equipment.

Contract Status & Impact

This contract is ongoing. For more information on this contract, send a request to

For this contract, a research team will conduct a literature review, a series of site visits, and a data search to determine injury and illness profiles as well as other incident profiles (e.g., collisions, rollovers) in the mining industry related to automated systems and the transition to an increasingly autonomous state. Cooperation will be requested from mining companies already in the process of implementing an automation transition plan to understand what they are doing, what their plans are, what they have learned, and what the impact on the workforce has been. Insights will also be sought from equipment manufacturers. Further, other industries such as nuclear, oil and gas, and specialty chemical and pharmaceuticals manufacturing will be reviewed to assess their automation status.

The resulting data will undergo analysis and will be used to generate a report of recommendations to prioritize the research gaps in the health and safety literature and determine best practices, standards, and guidelines in use in the mining industry. This report will be developed to better understand the global experience with automation in the mining industry.

Page last reviewed: August 24, 2023
Page last updated: August 24, 2023