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The 4th International Conference on Field and Service Robotics July 14 16 2003 Automatic 3D underground mine mapping Daniel F Huber Nicolas Vandapel The Robotics Institute Carnegie Mellon University Pittsburgh Pennsylvania 15213 dhuber ri cmu edu vandapel ri cmu edu Abstract For several years our research group has been developing methods for automated modeling of 3D environments In September 2002 we were given the opportunity to demonstrate our mapping capability in an underground coal mine The opportunity arose as a result of the Quecreek mine accident in which an inaccurate map caused miners to breach an abandoned water filled mine trapping them for several days Our field test illustrates the feasibility and potential of high resolution three dimensional 3D mapping of an underground coal mine using a cartmounted 3D laser scanner This paper presents our experimental setup the automatic 3D modeling method used and the results of the field test In addition we address issues related to laser sensing in a coal mine environment 1 Introduction For several years our research group has been developing methods for automated modeling of 3D environments 3 4 5 In September 2002 we were given the opportunity to demonstrate our mapping capability in an underground coal mine the Mine Safety and Health Administration MSHA research mine in Bruceton Pennsylvania The opportunity arose as a result of the Quecreek mine accident in July 2002 in which miners inadvertently breached an abandoned water filled mine trapping themselves amidst thousands of tons of water After the miners were safely rescued an investigation was launched to determine the cause of the accident and to identify new procedures necessary to prevent mine breaches in the future Regulations already in place aim to prevent such an accident mapping the mine before ending operations exploratory drilling and so forth Unfortunately old maps may be incorrect incomplete or simply lost In the end the Quecreek accident was



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