The device, which includes voice, video, tracking and operations data, is now federally compliant and can be installed at any US underground operation. It has had state approval in West Virginia since June 2007.
“MSHA approval means that our existing customers can now fully install the system to get the safety and operational benefits that supported their initial decision," said ACT president Steve Barrett.
The company’s RFID Wi-Fi tags were the first component to receive MSHA approval, getting the go-ahead from the agency last September for use underground.
Barrett said the ActiveMine system was already in operation at three mines in West Virginia; the devices were placed in non-gassy areas last May, August and December. Each mine will now receive the MSHA-approved infrastructure to give them comprehensive network coverage.
While officials confirmed that the Wi-Fi telephone component of the system was still pending approval, the company expects to receive it in the near future.
ACT said in December it made a deal with the Stacy Lynn operation in West Virginia to integrate gas monitoring capabilities into its ActiveMine system.
The purchase agreement was in addition to an existing order for ActiveMine made last May. ACT crews were scheduled to install the carbon monoxide monitors provided by Pennsylvania firm Rel-Tek.
“Network integration of the system was engineered collaboratively by both companies,” Barrett told ILN at the end of last year, adding that the decision to add both the data and gas aspects was part of a “layered approach value proposition” by the mine.
“This capability over a single wireless network is unique to ActiveMine, making it the system of choice for forward-thinking mine operators," he said.