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This paper defines the issues required for the development of successful visualisation sensors for use in open cut and underground mines. It examines the mine environment and considers both the reflectivity of the rock and attenuation effects of dust and water droplets. Millimetre wave technology, as an alternative to the more commonly used laser and sonar implementations, is selected due to its superior penetration through adverse atmospheric conditions. Of the available radar techniques, Frequency Modulated Continuous Wave (FMCW) is selected as being the most robust. The theoretical performance of a number of 94GHz FMCW millimetre wave radar systems is determined and these confirm the capability of these sensors in the mining environment.
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