Aura Gas Monitoring Systems
Gas monitoring is an essential aspect of maintaining a life supporting atmosphere within the refuge chamber. During entrapment, occupants consume oxygen and expire carbon dioxide (CO2) and carbon monoxide (CO) as part of their normal respiration. CO can also enter the chamber during occupant entry and if the compressed air intake is compromised.
Closely monitoring gas levels in the chamber allows occupants to take corrective actions to maintaining a safe and inhabitable environment. MineARC’s new Aura-FX Digital Gas Monitoring System is a proprietary fixed gas monitoring unit, designed specifically for use in refuge chambers and safe havens.
Aura-FX is standard on all new MineARC Refuge Chambers and Safe Havens. It is also available to retrofit to most existing chambers during an upgrade or refurbishment.
A vast improvement on current digital gas monitors (DGMs) on the market, Aura-FX provides a more convenient solution to internal refuge gas monitoring. Aura-FX has the ability to individually monitor anywhere up to 11 gases via a series of user-friendly, digital screens.
Audible voice alarms will prompt occupants to replace scrubbing chemicals or adjust oxygen supply levels into the refuge chamber as required.
When utilised as part of the MineARC System Intelligence network, Aura-FX provides real-time gas monitoring data and analysis to the surface via the GuardIAN Remote Monitoring and Diagnostics System dashboard.
- Real-time gas monitoring with live analysis
- Triple gas monitoring as standard (with option to monitor up to 11 gases if required)
- Internal chamber monitoring (with option to test external atmosphere if required)
- Intuitive scrolling digital display shows gas level trends
- Audible alarm and voice prompts of management procedures
- Ethernet connectivity allows remote monitoring over the network
- Secure, anti-theft in-built design
- Reduced risk of human error
- Greater servicing efficiency and cheaper replacement parts compared to other digital gas monitors
In contrast to most other DGM's on the market, Aura-FX sensors require a service and calibration just once every 12 months.
During a service, a trained technician will conduct a visual inspection of all hardware; verifying that it is operating correctly by adjusting the environment surrounding the sensors and ensuring that they respond appropriately.
Calibration is similar to other gas monitors on the market, with the added benefit of being able to calibrate insitu rather than bringing the unit to the surface. Each sensor is flooded with calibration gas of known composition, and the sensor reading is adjusted to match the target accordingly. This is conducted using the touchscreen interface on each monitor.
When the sensors reach the end of their service life, they are replaced simply by removing the click-in cover, pulling out the old sensor board, and pushing in the new one. MineARC encourage a bump test following any sensor change-over to ensure the unit is operating correctly.
Q: Do Sensors Require Calibration Immediately Following Replacement?
Aura-FX sensors are pre-calibrated by MineARC Systems prior to dispatch. While it is highly unlikely that an issue will arise, MineARC strongly encourage sites to bump test the sensor once installed as a precautionary measure, particularly if the sensors have encountered:
- Change in altitude
- Change in temperature
- Change in humidity
- Damage to packaging
- Exposure to gases
- More than three months have passed since pre-calibration
Other reasons you may need to calibrate on an ad-hoc basis include:
- After emergency use
- After high exposure to gases (for example, if the chamber door has been left open)
Q: Where is Aura-FX manufactured?
Aura-FX is designed and constructed by MineARC Systems in Perth, Western Australia. The system utilises quality components from companies around the world.
Q: Do the sensors require intermittant bump testing?
During standby periods, MineARC recommends functional testing (or bump testing) of the Aura-FX as part of the routine refuge chamber inspections and during service intervals, as per AS/NZS 60079.29.2.28: Gas Detectors standards.
Q: If Aura-FX is left on all the time, will it shorten the life of the sensors?
The sensor life remains the same, regardless of if the unit is left on or off.
Q: Can the Aura-FX voice boards be translated into other languages?
The Aura-FX voice prompts are MP3 files stored on an SD card, so can be replaced with alternatives as required. Translations into languages other than English can be provided, with cost to be advised at time of quotation. A language-free version using generic alarms will also be available in future.
Q: How do you know when it is time to replace a sensor?
The latest Aura-FX software update includes an internal clock that will alarm to indicate sensor change-out and calibration. Sensors are automatically time-stamped upon installation, prompting the appropriate countdown of either 12 months or 36 months to begin immediately. This new software update ensures there is no room for user error or negligence.