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NE China province opens radar research center on coal mine accident forecast

A research center on coal mine radar development opened Monday in northeast China's Heilongjiang Province in an effort to reduce coal mine accident losses by developing hi-tech forecasting and pre-warning.


Located in Harbin, the provincial capital, the Coal Mine Radar Technical Research and Development Center was jointly established by the China Research Institute of Radio Wave Propagation (CRIRWP), a local technology company and the large provincial miner, Longmei Mining Group (LMG).


The coal mine radar is meant to apply ground-penetrating radar techniques, one of the world's most advanced geographical exploration means, in the identification of potential hazards in coal mines, said Dong Qingsheng, chief of the CRIRWP.


The radar would identify geo-faults or permeable belts, in case of potential escaping lethal gas or flooding in coal mines, to allow officials to anticipate dangers, Dong said.


The technique will be put into use within one to two years, according to Dong.


Coal mine accidents are frequent in China. In 2009, 2,631 miners died in coal mine accidents, according to the State Administration of Coal Mine Safety data.


The most serious case in recent years occurred in Hegang City in Heilongjiang Province, which claimed 108 lives following an explosion in November 2009 at Xinxing Coal Mine under the state-owned LMG.

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