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WATCH: Local company scans gold mines untouched for 100 years with flying and underwater drones
Nir Pe'er, co-owner of Inspired Intelligence, uses an underwater drone to explore an untouched tunnel of the Consolidated Gold Mine in Dahlonega. Photo courtesy Inspired Intelligence

Through advanced technology, Nir and Amanda Pe’er, who co-own Inspired Intelligence in South Hall, have uncovered more than just a nugget about Dahlonega’s rich gold mining history and have helped a local business in the process. 

Spending months 200 feet underground in the city’s Consolidated Gold Mine, the company used special distance-measuring lasers to scan the mines, many of which have remained untouched for more than a century. They also explored the depths of the mines with underwater and flying drones. 

The space is run by the company Consolidated Gold Mine, which General Manager Dathan Harbert says uses one of its five mines to hold public tours. 

Harbert said Nir Pe’er and his family visited the Consolidated Gold Mine a couple times and later reached out to him about conducting a project in the mines. 

“When he approached us, we took it as, ‘This is going to be really cool, let’s give it a shot,’” Harbert recounted. “Then we realized that this is going to be an integral part of our expansion project.”  

The company had considered opening different portions of the underground property to the public. However, Harbert said they first needed to make sure certain sections were safe for visitors.   

This story continues below. 

Mapping the mines with technology 

Through LiDAR scanning, or measuring distances with lasers, the Pe’ers and their employees were able to produce a 3D map and model of the area, revealing untouched tunnels in the Dahlonega mines.  Nir Pe’er said the LiDAR device sends a powerful laser beam to a target area and measures the reflection with a sensor. The information gathered can then be used to provide a 3D representation of the space. 

“LiDAR scans are known for accuracy and speed,” he said. “Instead of having a crew there to measure each wall and each area, where they might take weeks or months, with LiDAR scanner, we did it in less than an hour.” 

Using LiDAR scanning, Inspired Intelligence from South Hall, produced a 3D map of the Consolidated Gold Mine in Dahlonega. Photo courtesy Inspired Intelligence