RWTH Aachen University: University involved in EU project for sustainable mining

The Institute for Advanced Mining Technologies at RWTH Aachen University, headed by Professor Elisabeth Clausen, is involved in the NEXGEN SIMS project.

This will be funded by the European Union with 16 million euros over the next three years. The aim is to develop new technologies, methods and processes that enable autonomous, more sustainable, more efficient and carbon-neutral mining. Project partners are various mining companies, equipment and system manufacturers as well as the Swedish Luleå University of Technology; the project is coordinated by Epiroc.

The research builds on the results of the H2020 project SIMS, which was funded by the European Union until 2020. The focus of the work is now on the use of battery-electric mining machines, the full use of 5G for optimal connectivity and positioning, autonomous material handling, AI-supported traffic and fleet control as well as cooperation between machines. The miner of the future – the “modern miner” – and safety, for example through the development of autonomous mine inspection technology, are also the subject of research.

The tasks of the Institute for Advanced Mining Technologies include the short-term provision of a communication network in environments without any infrastructure, a sensor system for monitoring the air quality in mines and a sensor system for the automatic detection of debris. These technologies are intended to contribute to autonomous driving and to increasing the safety of workers and machines.

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