Research Activities

Laboratory of Mine Ventilation

The subject matters of research conducted in Mine Ventilation Laboratory are related to unsteady states of gas and air flows in the mine ventilation network.

The currently carried out research encompasses the following areas:

  • transients of air flow caused by disturbances like fire, rocks and gas outburst or inflow of methane
  • application of computer simulation for analysis of flow of air and admixed gases in complex interconnected structures of airways
  • development of methods aimed at forecasting flow conditions in complex ventilation structures by combining monitoring, in situ measurements and numerical simulation
  • design and construction of specialized instruments for measurement of physical parameters of flow of air and admixed gases in especially
  • during transients customized to conditions of underground mine ducts and workings or other ventilation systems
  • measurement methodologies and tools for determination of ventilation network parameters and hazard
  • experimental testing of the selected issues relating to flow disturbances in ventilation network

Major achievements:

  • Development of ventilation-oriented software packages VentGraph that may support work of the mine ventilation engineer and education.
  • It has been implemented in most of the Polish coal mines and for educational purposes in Polish universities: AGH University of Science and Technology in Kraków and Silesian Polytechnics. The applications abroad include: universities and companies from the United States, Australia, Canada, Czech Republic , South Africa and Vietnam. It is also used by the Mine Rescue Stations in Poland, Czech Republic and Slovakia.
  • Development of the SWPPP system for multipoint measurement of velocity of flow in a cross section of a drift. This measurement system uses a network of vane anemometers with radio data transmission to the computer data acquisition and analysis system. The radio transmission eliminates the serious inconvenience caused by a number of wires leading to the control system used in case of dispersed, multi-sensor systems. The sensors measure velocity in both directions covering the range of ±0.2 to ±20 m/s at a sampling rate of 1 Hz and apart of transmission also store data in their internal memory.
  • Development of the CMM-1 gas and rock outburst detector. It may operate in working of an underground mine. The detection is based on analysis of data from three sensors – a chamber for a continuous measurement of methane concentration, barometer and a microphone.
  • Development of measuring-control instruments for recording the rock and gas outburst effects in its immediate neighborhood.
  • Development and implementation of ESCWIN software that cooperates with the mine monitoring system’s sensors, allowing for fire source detection and determination of endangered zone and the staff emergency exit routes.
  • Development and putting into manufacturing process of vane anemometers, both manual μAS types and stationary SAS and MPP models
  • Development of the Calibration Laboratory for Ventilation Measuring Instruments aimed at testing anemometers, barometers, hygrometers and thermometers.
  • Accreditation for the Calibration Laboratory for Ventilation Measuring Instruments issued by the Polish Centre for Accreditation (PCA), confirmed by the certificate no. AP 118.
  • Participation in the comparative research program for measurement laboratories EUROMET proj. No 388 “Intercomparison of Anemometers”.

The most important research results:

  • development of mathematical models that describe unsteady states of gas and air flows caused by a rocks and gas outburst in the mine excavations and workings network,
  • development of mathematical models that describe transient states of propagation of gases generated by fires in the mine workings network,
  • development of software for numerical simulation of the above-mentioned phenomena for varying conditions of ventilation and with the possibility of testing the impact of inert gases application on the extinguishing process. This software has been applied in Mining Industry for design, maintenance and consulting,
  • development of procedures of fire sources detection, determination of the zone endangered with fire-generated gases flows and the staff emergency exit routes,
  • development of graphic procedures for the on-screen computer visualization of numerical simulations results. Developed have been also methodologies of drafting schemes of the mine’s ventilation three-dimensional network,
  • laboratory testing of the pressure and velocity wave propagation, together with verification of developed mathematical models,
    trial testing of the fire source dynamics performed in a shaft in CSRG Bytom,
  • development of measuring-control instruments for recording the rock and gas outburst effects in its immediate neighborhood. With application of this equipment performed was recording of the outburst t course in cross-cut "C" in the Coal Mine "Nowa Ruda".

Current activities:

  • verification of models and results of numerical simulation of flow of air in mining excavations by in-situ experiments to enhance practical application of computer flow modeling, which may result in increased safety and efficiency of ventilation of subsurface structures,
  • development of the intelligent software based on data collected by the mine ventilation monitoring system and post analysis of flow phenomena related to explanation of causes of mining disasters,
  • application of computational fluid dynamics (CFD) to underground mines ventilation and flow in specific porous media like goaf or waste dumps,
  • development of the new methodologies and instruments for measuring parameters that characterize mine and industrial ventilation networks.