An intuitive & accessible escape hood for an underground mine
Ever shifting, changing and living. A dream for an industrial designer.I made my stand on placement and the user yourney/ergonomics.Classic UID ideation to raise the innovative roof of my concept. Several workshops and mockups gave me a direction.Mixing LKAB brand values with the feeling I got from Kiruna and the users to reach a design brand language I felt comfortable with.Step by step from start of accident until the hood is applied.During accidents, the station is highly visible and does also give out a varning sound.The box can be applied via Carabiner in most contexts and by velcro straps on the leg.

Abstract

In LKABs underground mines, safety in fire accidents is a great priority. Of outmost importance for the escape is to have a personal gas filter for filtration of smoke and/or gas. My design project resulted in a concept which is aimed at shortening the user journey from the start of the accident until the user has applied the personal safety solution and is ready to escape.

Inspiration and Method

I have always lived around mines and around people working with mines. They are a natural part of my life and, inevitably, a great interest of mine. When time came to make a decision for a degree project, focusing on the mine context felt as natural as breathing.

Throughout the project I've been working with a context wich is heavily regulated, and all problems are serious, important ones. I have been striving towards keeping a high level of innovation during the process, whatever the result in the end might be. I've been heavily relying on scenarios/workflows, product testing, observation, and I've had the great joy to be able to take part of LKABs accident reports. In the end, what concept won the ”ideation phase” of my project was one focused on removing time consuming moments from the workflow.

Result

The concept can be divided into three parts, but it is the way these collaborate that makes out the main part of the concept.

1: An escape station, providing a standardized placement of Escape hoods.
2: A container for the vacuum sealed Escape hood.
3: An escape hood which enables a personalized fit for the user.

Interactive surfaces are color coded with the goal to provide an intuitive workflow. When the container is opened, the vacuum seal is immediately broken and the user gains access to two handles, one white and one red. The handles are used to lift and apply the escape hood, and the red handle is then used, by pulling, to tighten the throat fit.

Combined, these solutions help the user applying her escape hood in shorter time, and a large head size, glasses, beard and a thick throat are not longer problematic for the application.