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Video analytics technology and the impact for the mining and metals industries

Even though the systems are high tech, the concept of the video analytics is quite simple: the ability of the camera systems to analyze images in a defined context.

Without those systems, the role is transferred to the plant operator or security personnel, who needs to analyze dozens of monitors and cameras in real time and identify erratic behavior involving people and assets. The idea behind video analytics is to bring intelligence to the camera systems and alert the operator if “something is happening” (under pre-defined conditions and thresholds).

Such technologies can be used simultaneously for process control monitoring, asset safety, and most important, personnel safety.

 To give a better understanding about these technologies, here are seven basic examples about its features and some potential applications in any heavy and/or process industries:

Directional motion:

  • Generates an alarm when a person or object moves in a user-specified direction
  • Typical installations include applications where cameras can detect vehicles / personnel moving in the opposite direction of “expected” normal flow of traffic or an individual entering through an exit door

Adaptive motion /autotracking

  • Detects and tracks objects that enter a zone (filtered by size, if necessary); after identified, the camera automatically pans and tilts to follow the targeted subject

Object removal

  • Triggers an alarm if an object is removed from a defined zone
  • Ideal for applications which require the detection of the removal of high value or critical objects (e.g. sensitive laboratory equipments, computers, or hazardous chemicals in protected areas)

Stopped vehicle

  • Detects vehicles stopped near a sensitive area for longer than the user-defined time
  • Ideal for mining areas (closer to mining trucks and heavy machinery) and vehicles waiting at gates

Object counting

  • Counts the number of objects that enter a defined zone or cross a “tripwire” (virtual tripwire defined by the user)
  • Can be used to count the number of people at an entrance/exit or inside an area where traffic is light

Abandoned object

  • Detects objects placed in a user-defined zone after a determined time
  • Ideal system for critical infrastructure (chemicals, fuel, hazardous areas) where potential explosive devices can be placed accidentally or purposefully close to those critical areas

Loitering detection

  • Detects people or vehicles in a zone longer than the user-defined time
  • Effective for real-time notification of suspicious behavior or accidents around hazardous areas / critical infrastructure

In addition, some of these technologies can be associated with thermal camera systems where subtle differences in appearance cannot be detected through traditional camera systems.  Thermal vision systems can be used for surveillance, asset management, and process control monitoring.


 Want to know more about video analytics and how can address your applications challenges? Please, leave your comments below.