Navigation path

Themes
Agriculture & food
Energy
Environment
ERA-NET
Health & life sciences
Human resources & mobility
Industrial research
  Building & construction
  Coal & steel
  Industrial processes & robotics
  Materials & products
  Nanotechnology
  Standards, measures & testing
  Other
Information society
Innovation
International cooperation
Nanotechnology
Pure sciences
Research infrastructures
Research policy
Science & business
Science in society
Security
SMEs
Social sciences and humanities
Space
Special Collections
Transport

Countries
Countries
  Argentina
  Australia
  Austria
  Belgium
  Brazil
  Bulgaria
  Canada
  Chile
  China
  Croatia
  Cyprus
  Czech Republic
  Denmark
  Egypt
  Estonia
  Finland
  France
  Georgia
  Germany
  Ghana
  Greece
  Hungary
  Iceland
  India
  Ireland
  Israel
  Italy
  Japan
  Kazakhstan
  Kenya
  Korea
  Latvia
  Lithuania
  Luxembourg
  Malta
  Montenegro
  Morocco
  Namibia
  Netherlands
  Nigeria
  Norway
  Peru
  Poland
  Portugal
  Romania
  Russia
  Serbia
  Slovakia
  Slovenia
  South Africa
  Spain
  Sweden
  Switzerland
  Taiwan
  Tunisia
  Turkey
  Ukraine
  United Kingdom
  United States


   Success Stories

Last Update: 11-09-2012  
Related category(ies):
Energy  |  Industrial research

 

Countries involved in the project described in the article:
France  |  Germany  |  Spain  |  United Kingdom
Add to PDF "basket"

SAFETECH – Improving safety in coal mines

Coal mines tend to be located deep underground which can result in adverse environmental conditions. High levels of heat and humidity create more arduous working conditions and can hamper the ability of rescue workers to safely carry out operations during an emergency.


© Fotolia, 2012

Started in September 2003 , SAFETECH was a three year Research Fund for Coal and Steel (RFCS) project that aimed at alleviating potential dangerous situations associated with such heat and humidity. It did this by gaining an understanding of the risks and monitoring the mining environment which ultimately protected workers.

With European Union (EU) funding of €1.9 million, SAFETECH was coordinated by Deutsche Steinkohle AG (DSK) in Germany but had various partners in France, Germany, Spain and the United Kingdom.

SAFETECH has improved the surveillance of underground air in mines which has allowed for the quick detection of hazardous gas concentrations and concealed fires. It has also developed safe systems and equipment for monitoring mines and shafts susceptible to explosions. Crucially, the project improved methods of gas capture and climate control in mines.

"New methods for predicting, monitoring and controlling the emissions of methane and other problematic gases will always be required for all deep coal mine operations and extraction methods," said SAFETECH Mines Rescue Service Ltd project leader, Bob Jozefowicz. "These methods are also important for application during working, termination of working and closing of a mine."

The results of SAFETECH have appeared in various publications, at conferences and even product demonstrations. Interestingly, various research components appear to have been exploited in various EU member states. For example, the monitoring equipment and systems of work carried out by the consortium were utilised in France at the time of the complete termination of its deep coal mining activities.

It is nearly impossible to calculate the economical benefits of safety related projects. However, a strong indication of just how SAFETECH has improved the situation can be seen in the lower accident rates. For example, in Germany the accident rate in 2003 was 32. In 2010, this figure stood at less than 8 accidents which is a reduction of 75%.

The legacy of SAFETECH looks set to live on. With the closure of many mines within the EU increasing each year, safe techniques to monitor such environments during the termination of working towards closure are crucial.

Project details

  • Participants: Germany (Coordinator), Spain, United Kingdom, France.
  • Project N° RFCR-CT-2003-00010
  • Total costs: € 3 267 686
  • EU contribution: € 1 960 611
  • Duration: September 2003 - February 2007

Convert article(s) to PDF

No article selected


loading


Search articles
To restrict search results to articles in the Information Centre, i.e. this site, use the search box at the top of the page to the right of the menu and then select "Information Centre" in the "Filter by" menu on the results page.

Please note that new content may take a few days to be indexed by the search engine and therefore to appear in the results.

Print Version
Share this article
See also

Project web site

Project information on CORDIS

Contacts
Unit A1 - External & internal communication,
Directorate-General for Research & Innovation,
European Commission
Tel : +32 2 298 45 40
  Top   Research Information Center