Mining Technology Associate Professor Dave Colombo introduces students at Rend Lake College to the program’s new Atmospheric Monitoring System. The new technology was gifted to the program by CONSPEC Controls and Pillar Innovations. CLICK HERE for a larger image.
INA, Ill. – Mine safety and rescue training at Rend Lake College got an injection of technology recently, thanks to the innovation and generosity of a couple of companies with deep roots in the industry.
CONSPEC Controls and Pillar Innovations equipped the program with a new Atmospheric Monitoring System, valued at around $50,000. The AMS is an MSHA approved system that allows operators to monitor, control, and log information about mining conditions, as well as other data, in one, state-of-the-art package.
The AMS will be instrumental in future training and emergency management exercies at RLC, said the college’s Applied Science and Technology Division Chair Terry Wilkerson.
“The AMS is really gong to be key in doing mine rescue training here,” said Mining Technology Associate Professor Dave Colombo. “We can now coordinate mine rescue training with a MERD exercise, which really boosts the overall training package we offer. This particular AMS measures carbon monoxide in the mine, which is a precursor to fire.”
The system presented to RLC uses sensors placed in the mine which relay conditions back to a computer and server at the control center. According to Colombo, all underground coal mines in the U.S. are required to have an atmospheric monitoring system in place.
“We felt it was important to make this donation because we wanted to make sure to promote safety in the classroom for the new upcoming generation of miners,” said Rob Albinger, President CONSPEC Controls Inc.
John McGuire with Pillar Innovations in Evansville, Ind., said, “The AMS system was designed to be as realistic as possible. We hope that this training opportunity will give future miners some real-world experience in a cutting edge environment.”
“All of our career tech programs here at Rend Lake are founded on live experience and this is another piece of the coal mining department’s ability to make a training environment as close to the real thing as possible,” Wilkerson said.
Since 1968, CONSPEC Controls has been globally supplying affordable and robust gas sensors, detectors, and systems for numerous industries in a variety of diverse applications, according to the company’s website at www.conspec-controls.com.
Pillar Innovations’ branch in Evansville, Ind., is one of five locations serving the U.S. mining market. Formed out of Beitzel Corporation, an industrial leader for more than 30 years, Pillar Innovations serves the needs of customers from coast to coast with state-of-the-art technology.