Mining companies from around the world have begun using artificial intelligence in their operations. From safety and maintenance, to exploration and autonomous vehicles, and drills, AI is being used to navigate efficiencies and speed. With this new technology, however, comes an ever-growing need for a workforce who can navigate these new systems.
Thanks to a $1.25 million grant from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, an interdisciplinary team at the University of Nevada, Reno, has committed to graduating six doctoral and four master’s degree students who will address several challenges related to major safety and health issues in mining operations.
“Future mine engineers need to understand emerging technology like AI, drones and big data,” Javad Sattarvand, University College of Science assistant professor of mining engineering and the project’s principal investigator, said. “We claim creating excellence in the workforce is the missing part of the chain, which would make mining engineers more aware of health and safety issues of the future.”
Sattarvand said that this project will help elevate the safety of mines. “Failure is inevitable in any mine,” Sattarvand said. “The path to safer and healthier mining operations crosses only through development of an academic human resource capacity with a greater understanding of emerging technological infrastructures.”
These technological infrastructures include artificial intelligence, Internet of Things, big data, cloud computing, robotics, teleoperation, immersive technologies (Virtual/Augmented Reality), drones and mobile crowdsourcing.
Joining Sattarvand on this project is a group of multidisciplinary professionals from three colleges at the University: the College of Business, the College of Engineering and the College of Science. Co-investigators include Bahram Parvin, professor, College of Engineering; George Danko, professor, College of Science; Amir Talaei-Khoei, assistant professor, College of Business and Bahrooz Abbasi, assistant professor, College of Science. Also on the project as a subcontractor is Sebnem Duzgun, professor, Colorado School of Mines.
“This is a great example of interdisciplinary cooperation to solve real issues,” University President Marc Johnson said.
Read the rest of the article at unr.edu/nevada-today.