Advanced Photonics Australia’s Director Ubaldo Torre is
proud to announce the signing of a contract with Glencore Coal.
The contract will provide a fully redundant fibre optic
cable DTS based fire detection system for the Bulga Coal Handling Plant for the
surface and reclaim tunnel conveyors.
The system will provide area coverage from the run of mine
stockpile area conveyors, 3 reclaim tunnels, through the Coal Handling & Preparation
Plant (CHPP), across to the Train Loadout (TLO) conveyor and ending at the TLO
This will provide early warning of abnormal heat build-up to
minimise the potential serious consequences of equipment overheating, which
could endanger personnel, damage the mine and equipment.
An internal risk review process by the Glencore managed
Bulga Open Cut Mine identified the need for conveyor fire detection which would
Interface not only to
the fire alarm system, but fully integrated with their existing site SCADA for
warning of abnormal heat build-up
of the abnormal heat or fire within a
management (i.e. evacuation, fire-fighting
Full history of the fire initiation point, its
movement/spread, temperatures reached, with date/time stamping for the eventual
reporting & investigation
Option for automatic activation of fire suppression systems;
A maintenance free fire
detection system requiring no calibration;
A 24x7 fire detection
and temperature monitoring system that increases safety for the protection of
people and fixed assets.
An overview of our solution for the Glencore managed Bulga Open Cut Mine is shown below. It consists of over 5 km of fibre cable
distributed throughout the site.
THE DTS KEY COMPONENTS
The CABLE is the SENSOR
Distributed Temperature Sensing (DTS) technology using a linear heat detector laser source through a single fibre optic core measuring 4 mm in diameter. It has been successfully tested and deployed in both surface and underground mines.
The ruggedized fibre optic based system has the capacity to
detect heat build-up quickly and localize the source to within 0.5 metres. This
precision is unaffected by wind and other environmental effects, because not
only convective, but also conductive and radiant (infrared) heat is detected by
The fibre optic cable is:
fire detection use (flame resistance 750°C for 2 hours, IEC 60331)
propagate the flame along the cable (IEC60332-3).
Can be installed in harsh
environments (stainless steel cable sheath with high crush
Is immune to EMI (electromagnetic
Requires no maintenance,
after it is installed.
The fibre cable is the sensor,
no other cabling or field interface devices required.
The DTS unit
The DTS system’s capabilities include:
24x7 remote temperature
monitoring of the entire length, for total coverage.
Provides not only the temperature but the actual location of the fire.
It provides early warning
of abnormal heat before a flame occurs.
Interfaces to fire
alarm panels & existing site HMI/SCADA
Integrity Level SIL2 (IEC61508) for high reliability when asked to
Available in 19” rack or
IP66 external stainless steel enclosures
Aldo started his career as an Electrical Engineer in the design and construction of water and wastewater infrastructure in Victoria. He then moved to working as an instrumentation and Process Control Systems Engineer for Fluor Australia primarily in the oil/gas, and food industry, before moving to Newcastle NSW. In Newcastle he has worked for Hunter Control, Matrikon, and Honeywell progressing from Project Manager, Operations & Engineering Manager of the Matrikon Automation business, through to marketing leader for Honeywell’s mining and materials handling business in Asia Pacific working primarily in the coal mining sector for over 25 years. He is now one of the directors of Advanced Photonics Australia, and his personal mission is to evaluate the needs for fire safety in both public facilities and industry and to apply innovative solutions to improve site safety & optimise operations.
Underground mines can develop significant hot spot areas due to many factors including:
Length and depth of mine,
Layout of tunnel routes, slopes, corners, crossroads & dead ends.
Heat generating equipment such as electrical substations, mechanical crushers, diesel vehicles.
External climatic conditions
These hot spots combined with the level of humidity and air pressure variations, can impact the underground miner’s working environment, and compromise equipment operation and life span. Traditional climate monitoring is localized and only approximates overall temperatures along the mine.
An example of the application of a DTS system in the coal industry for underground mine temperature monitoring over 2.5 km is shown in the graph below**. For the Geting underground coal mine shown the goaf (partially or totally mined) areas are monitored as they are considered a probable source of heat build-up and possible spontaneous combustion. Simplicity of installation, strength of the Stainless Steel reinforced fibre optic cable, reliable heat detection, and lower total cost of ownership over long distances were the main benefits for the DTS application.
A temperature monitoring system that can provide 24x7 monitoring would greatly increase operating safety for the protection of people and fixed assets.
Distributed Temperature Sensing (DTS) technology using a linear heat detector on a single fibre optic core has been successfully tested and deployed in underground mines.
The DTS system’s capabilities have been proven to exceed conventional mine temperature monitoring point detection systems. The ruggedized fibre optic based system has the capacity to detect heat build-up quickly and localize the source to within 0.5 metres. This precision is unaffected by wind and other environmental effects, because not only convective, but also conductive and radiant (infrared) heat is measured by the system.
Our fibre optic cable Distributed Temperature Sensing system provides the following key features for your underground mine operation:
Can use existing fibre optic communications cable, no need for new cable or installation.
Provides the temperature and its location along the whole cable route.
Provides mine heat map for personnel and equipment safety,
Safe to install in hazardous areas (zone 0 and zone 20),
Is immune to EMI (electromagnetic interference),
Requires no maintenance,
The fibre cable is the sensor, no other cabling or field interface devices required.
**Liuyuan Leitao, WeiyubinSunzhihui,Wangchang Liutongyu, Application of distributed optical fiber temperature sensing system based on Raman scattering in coal mine safety monitoring; Shandong Key Lab of Optical Fiber Sensing Technology Laser Institute of Shandong Academy of Sciences Jinan, China 2012
Fire on board a vessel either docked at port or out to sea, can develop into a serious situation, ranging from risk to human life, equipment destruction, or loss of cargo. The risk of overheated equipment, explosive event, electrical cable failure on board can cause a fire situation. Due to the compartmentalised nature and size of a vessel, this considerable risk can remain undetected for a considerable time.
Whether your vessel is used for:
Passenger only travel,
RORO (roll-on, roll-off) ferry,
Oil & Gas transport
Cargo with dust explosive potential (e.g. coal, grain),
A ship’s large engine room area being one of the potential sources of fire on-board.
However, it is very difficult to comprehensively monitor all this area plus electrical cable trays, false floors, storage areas, kitchens, corridors and so on.
Our fibre optic DTS accredited fire detection system can now do this, and provide you with early warningof the potential for fire event AND its exact locationaboard your vessel.
Early warning of a potential fire is critical for evacuation of passengers and crew, targeting fire suppression systems, minimising equipment damage, and avoiding loss of valuable cargo.
Typical passenger vessel DTS and fibre cable layout.
Typical RORO DTS and fibre cable layout shown
Cover the complete deck and multiple decks with one system.
Display fire monitoring areas with ship levels
The best technical and cost-effective solution to provide TOTAL vessel coverage and EARLY warning of abnormal heat build-up around equipment, is a linear heat detector (LHD) fibre optic based system.
Our fibre optic cable distributed temperature system (DTS) provides the following key features for your vessel’s protection:
Accredited for fire detection use (flame resistance 750°C for 2 hours, IEC 60331)
Fibre cable is non-corrosive to survive the effects of the harsh sea environment.
Doesn’t propagate the flame along the cable (IEC60332-3).
24x7 remote temperature monitoring of the whole vessel, to detect which compartments are danger areas.
Provides the actual location of the fire, to remote monitoring control rooms.
It provides early warning of heat before a flame occurs.
Can be installed in harsh environments (stainless steel cable sheath with high crush resistance).