An overview of NIOSH mine illumination research: past, present, and future.
2013 SME Annual Meeting, February 24 - 27, Denver, Colorado, Preprint 13-006. Englewood, CO: Society for Mining, Metallurgy, and Exploration, Inc., 2013 Feb; :1-7
Illumination is essential for mine safety because miners depend most heavily on visual cues to detect hazards associated with slips/trips/falls and powered haulage. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) is conducting mine illumination research to improve miner safety by enhancing a miner's ability to see mine hazards. Thus far, 16 papers have been published covering diverse topics such as cap lamps, machine-mounted lighting, glare, lighting maintenance, and light-emitting diode (LED) technology issues. NIOSH has also developed an LED cap lamp, LED area lighting, and a Visual Warning System (VWS). This paper provides an overview of the improvements from NIOSH-developed lighting that include: 94% faster trip hazard detection with the NIOSH LED cap lamp; 79% faster peripheral motion detection to detect pinning/striking hazards; no increase in glare; 71% faster machine movement hazard detection with the VWS. Current research is described concerning an LED cap lamp for metal/nonmetal miners, illumination for refuge alternative deployment and inspection, and whether lighting could be used to improve miner escape and rescue in smoke. Lastly, future possibilities of using lighting to improve miner safety are described.
Mining-industry; Underground-mining; Mining-equipment; Safety-equipment; Safety-research; Safety-engineering; Engineering-controls; Visual-aids; Visual-fields; Visual-perception; Hazards; Fall-protection; Lighting; Lighting-systems; Statistical-analysis; Age-factors; Illumination; Humans; Men
2013 SME Annual Meeting, February 24 - 27, Denver, Colorado, Preprint 13-006