Economy Refuge – MineSAFE Essential Design

Economy Refuge solutions by MineARC provide the most cost effective alternative to MineARC’s flagship Standard Design. The MineSAFE Essential Design chamber offers all of the critical features required to sustain life during an underground mine emergency whilst maintaining the quality of a MineARC engineered chamber that complies with internationally recognised refuge chamber guidelines.

The Essential Design (ED) is designed specifically to accommodate tight mining confines such as shaft mines, while still providing ample internal space for a range of occupancies.

Economy Refuge – Front View

The ‘face’ of the refuge chamber is designed primarily for easy identification and quick access during an emergency.

The strobe lighting, warning siren and reflective signage alert passers-by to the chamber’s location, whilst the rotating door handles provide simple, straight forward access to the safety of the interior.

Extra low voltage green and red LED lighting and 112 dBA motion activated siren to allow for easy identification of the refuge chamber in an emergency.

12mm porthole viewing window, compliant with Australian Standard 2208. Blast shield protection available upon request.

Outward opening door, featuring double locking rotating handles. The vacuum tested seal maintains a positive internal pressure.

Safety and operational signage in reflective stickering for high visibility underground. Translation into a second language available.

The skid base provides ease of mavoeuvrability, featuring 250 x 100mm forklift slots, front and rear mounted tow points and front mounted 25mm steel plate push blocks.

High durability white paint for underground visibility. Sand blasted to 2.5 grit.

Economy Refuge - Interior View

Inside a MineSAFE Essential Design Refuge Chamber, a number of vital life-support systems combine to create a safe, ongoing environment for occupants. Systems include; primary and secondary air (oxygen) supplies, air conditioning systems, positive pressure systems, electrical systems, gas detection and a chemical scrubbing system.

The MineSAFE Essential Design uses active chemicals and MineARC’s ELV (extra-low-voltage) Scrubbing System to ‘scrub’ the build up of harmful CO2 (carbon dioxide) and CO (carbon monoxide) from the air inside the refuge chamber.

1140-tunnelsafe-gd-interior

Air conditioning is vital to combat the potentially fatal effects of heat stress, caused by the occupant’s metabolic activity, as well as any ambient heat.

Operating procedures are located on the wall of the refuge chamber, as well as within hardcopy manuals. Operating procedures can be translated into a second language.

MineARC’s MARCISORB CO2 and MARCISORB CO cartridges provide superior scrubbing capacity, are easy to load, safe to handle, and can store for long periods.

The MineARC Compressed Air Management System (CAMS) is a dedicated air management unit designed specifically for MineARC Refuge Chambers.

Real-time gas monitoring with live analysis and voice prompting. Monitor up to 11 gases at any one time.

The TunnelSAFE uses active chemicals and MineARC’s extra-low-voltage scrubbing system to ‘scrub’ the build up of harmful CO2 and CO from the chamber.

The digital controller interface is the operational hub of the refuge chamber. From here, all power, lighting & scrubbing systems can be managed with the push of a button.

MineARC seating is ergonomically designed to provide suitable comfort during entrapment. Made from durable, hard wearing fabric, the seating provides 500mm of space per person.

Economy Refuge - Rear View

A secure cabinet at the rear of the MineSAFE Essential Design houses the refuge chamber’s UPS battery back up (Uninterruptible Power Supply). The UPS is a fail-safe system that can power the refuge chamber’s internal life support systems for a minimum of 24hrs, should mine power become cut-off.

Also at the rear of the chamber is the Compressed Air Management System (CAMS), which allows regulated compressed air into the refuge chamber when the pressure inside drops below 200Pa. This process optimises mine air usage and guarantees against over-pressurisation of the refuge chamber. CAMS’ gas toxicity monitor automatically diverts compressed air if oxygen levels in the airline fall below a set level (18% oxygen in free air), signifying air contamination. Additionally, the incorporated flood protection valve automatically shuts down compressed air to avoid catastrophic and costly chamber damage in the event of water ingress.

The MineARC Compressed Air Management System (CAMS) is a dedicated air management unit designed specifically for MineARC Refuge Chambers.
Communications box for internal communications port via wall mounted ‘J’ box. External antenna is fitted to front of chamber.
Air conditioning is vital to combat the potentially fatal effects of heat stress, caused by the occupant’s metabolic activity, as well as any ambient heat.
36 hour emergency backup power supply, with further options available for up to 96 hours (POA).

Comparison Table

Name Capacity * Advanced Digital Control System ** iVAN *** Aura-FX Gas monitoring Modular construction Powerless Portable System **** Air-conditioning 36hrs Battery Backup 5psi Blast Rating *****
8-30
4-8
8-30
8-26
12-32
30-500
  • * Capacity Every refuge chamber is built with a certain rated occupancy in mind. The life support systems are designed to safely house this number of people for the designated duration.
  • ** Advanced Digital Control System All refuge chambers with a Series IV Scrubbing System feature MineARC's unique Advanced Digital Control System.
  • *** iVAN iVAN is an on-board navigation assistant that guides occupants through operational procedures.
  • **** Powerless Portable System MineARC's Powerless Portable System means it can sit stand-alone for extended periods without requiring connection to mains (mine) power
  • ***** 5psi Blast Rating MineARC offers blast rating upgrades to all refuge chambers.

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