Mining of minerals can be made safer and more efficient by using technologies, including artificial intelligence, machine learning and the internet of things, Odisha Steel and Mines Minister Prafulla Mallik said on Sunday.
Speaking at a seminar on 'Technological and Digital Advancements in Mining and Mineral Beneficiation' here, he cited examples of cutting-edge exploration technology using computer vision and sensing applications and predictive monitoring systems that enhance workers' safety.
He also highlighted the efficient means of extracting value from "increasingly low-grade deposits".
"Harnessing technology is imperative to make mining safer and more efficient," Mallik said while addressing the event organised by the Mining Engineers Association of India (MEAI).
Mines Director Debidutta Biswal said there is a need for a well-developed mining and mineral beneficiation industry in the country as it provides important raw material to many sectors that are the backbone of economic development.
The Odisha government has adapted to the changing technologies in mining and implemented an "IT-based mineral administration through a software application named Integrated Mines and Mineral Management System(i3MS)", the official said.
"Introduction of technology in mining has gained paramount importance over the years to improve safety, environment and production," MEAI vice president Sundara Ramam said.
Tata Steel Mining managing director Pankaj Satija said more use of minerals in existing and emerging applications, coupled with new technologies, could lead to a paradigm shift in the way minerals would be produced and consumed in the future.
The impact of various digital initiatives within the sector and the value they could create for the industry were assessed during the event.
Participants also discussed digital innovations that have the greatest potential to create value for the mining and metals industry over the next decade.