R. Larry Grayson

Directory Info

R. Larry Grayson

Retired Professor of Energy and Mineral Engineering

110 Hosler Building

814-865-3437

Biographical Sketch: 

Since July 2, 2007, Dr. Grayson has been the George H., Jr., and Anne B. Deike Endowed Chair in Mining Engineering and Professor of Energy & Mineral Engineering at The Pennsylvania State University. At Penn State he manages the Mining Engineering program. For six years previously, he was the Chair, Department of Mining & Nuclear Engineering at the University of Missouri-Rolla (UMR). During this time, he was the Director of the NIOSH-funded Western Mining Safety & Health Training and Translation Center for five years.

Following the mine tragedies in 2006, Dr. Grayson chaired the tripartite Mine Safety Technology & Training Commission, which was established by the National Mining Association to do an independent study on current and future approaches to improve mine safety in the U.S. Prior to going to UMR, he served in government from 1997-2000 as the first permanent Associate Director of the Office for Mine Safety & Health Research, National Institute for Occupational Safety & Health (NIOSH), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and managed the merger-transition of former U.S. Bureau of Mines' mine health and safety research functions into NIOSH.

Following the Upper Big Branch Mine-South disaster in April 2010, he had discussions with Congressional staff persons (House and Senate) on mine safety and health reform legislation, specifically regarding a potential replacement approach to the proposed new Pattern of Violations process. He gave testimony on July 13th at the House Education and Labor Committee hearing on this issue. He also gave multiple presentations at several conferences, worked with the National Mining Association, the West Virginia Coal Association, and various coal companies on evaluating safe performance. He gave testimony at several hearings to the Mine Safety and Health Administration on related topics.

After joining the Pennsylvania coal mining industry in early 1975, he worked for 9 years as a United Mine Workers of America (union) laborer and in various engineering and management positions, including as chief mining engineer and superintendent of a 500-employee underground coal mine and surface facilities. In academia, he has been a professor, a chair, and a dean, and has published 175 technical articles, reports, and book chapters, including 62 articles in peer-reviewed journals. His publications largely focus on mine health and safety, including on underground coal mines, and mine management applications. Dr. Grayson is a registered professional engineer in Pennsylvania and West Virginia as well as a certified Mine Foreman and Mine Examiner in Pennsylvania.

Educational Background: 

Ph.D. (Engineering), West Virginia University, 1986

M.S. (Engineering of Mines), West Virginia University, 1981

B.S. (Engineering of Mines), West Virginia University, 1978

B.A.(Mathematics), California University, 1974

Certifications: 
  • Registered professional mining engineer in Pennsylvania (No. PE-031071-E; March, 1982), West Virginia (No. 9541; June, 1984) and Missouri (No. E-28427; December, 1996, expired).
  • Certified in Pennsylvania as Mine Foreman (No. 966; November, 1979) and as Mine Examiner (No. 1766; March, 1979).
  • Previously certified as EMT in Pennsylvania.
  • Previously certified as MSHA Part 48 Instructor and Impoundment Inspector.
Research Interests: 
  • Mine health and safety
  • Sustainable development
  • Mine operations management and optimization
  • Underground coal mining
Active Research Projects: 
  • NIOSH project entitled, Underground Coal Mine Battery Safety
  • American Electric Power project entitled, Sustainability Survey of AEP Coal Suppliers, American Electric Power
  • MSHA-DOL Brookwood-Sago Project entitled, Best Practices for Preventing Emergencies in Underground Mines
  • MSHA-DOL Brookwood-Sago Project entitled, Enhancing Emergency Prevention Performance: an Education and Training Program for Supervisors
Selected Publications: 
  1. Grayson, L. and H. Kinilakodi, 2012, "Underground Coal Mine Safety Performance: A Decade of Challenges and Improvements," Coal Age, Vol. 117, No. 1, pp. 50-51.
  2. Kinilakodi, H., Grayson, R.L., and Oyewole, S., 2012, "Evaluating Equivalence of the Safe Performance Index (SPI) to a Traditional Risk Analysis," Open Journal of Safety Science and Technology, in press.
  3. Grayson, R.L. and Kinilakodi, H., 2011, "Analysis of U.S. Small-Mine Compliance Feasibility with Proposed New Respirable Dust Standards and Implications for Better Dust Control Methods," Trans. SME, 23 pp., peer-reviewed and accepted for publication.
  4. Kinilakodi, H. and Grayson, R.L., 2012, "Tracking Mine Safety Performance Trends to Assess the Risk for a Fatality," Mining Engineering, Vol. 64, No. 6, pp. 48-52, peer-reviewed article.
  5. Grayson, R.L., 2011, "What is the Ideal Mine Safety and Health Management Program?" Coal News, Vol. 8, No. 7, p. 8.
  6. Grayson, R.L., 2011, "Effective Safety and Health Management Systems," Coal News, Vol. 8, No. 7, pp. 14-15.
  7. Grayson, R.L. and Kinilakodi, H., 2011, "A Comparison of the 2008-2009 Post-MINER Act Safety Performances of Union and Non-Union Underground Coal Mines," Int. J. of Mining and Mineral Engineering, Vol. 3, No. 3, pp. 173-193, peer-reviewed article.
  8. Aziz, A.M., Grayson, R.L., and Kecojevic, V., 2011, "Impact of renewable power market penetration on coal power generation capacity growth," J. Coal Science and Engineering, Vol. 17, No. 2, pp. 217-224, peer-reviewed article.
  9. Grayson, R.L., 2011, "Safe Performance Index (SPI)," Coal News, Vol. 8, No. 4, p. 11.
  10. Kinilakodi, H. and Grayson, R.L., 2011, "Citation-Related Reliability Analysis for a Pilot Sample of Underground Coal Mines," J. Accident Analysis & Prevention, Vol. 43, pp. 1015-1021, peer-reviewed article.
  11. Kinilakodi, H. and Grayson, R.L., 2011, "Assessing Small Underground Coal Mines for High Safety-Related Risk," Mining Engineering, Vol. 63, No. 10, pp. 73-77, peer-reviewed article.
  12. Grayson, R.L., Kinilakodi, H., and Kweder, M., 2011, "Comparative Analysis of Compliance with Mine Ventilation Standards by USA Longwall Underground Coal Mines," Int. J. of Mining and Mineral Engineering, Vol. 3, No. 1, pp. 38-54, peer-reviewed article.
  13. Kinilakodi, H. and Grayson, R.L., 2011, "A Methodology for Assessing Underground Coal Mines for High Safety-Related Risk," J. of Safety Science, Vol. 49, No. 6, pp. 906-9011, peer-reviewed article.
Recent Activities: 

Academic Services

  • College Post-Tenure Review Committee, The Pennsylvania State University, 2008-2010
  • Department Promotion & Tenure Committee, The Pennsylvania State University, 2009-2010
  • Chair, Department of Energy and Mineral Enigineering Strategic Planning Committee, 2008

Professional Services

  • Member, Society for Mining, Metallurgy, and Exploration (SME), AIME
  • Member, Pittsburgh Coal Mining Institute of America (PCMIA)
  • Chair, Mine Safety Technology and Training Commission, which is an independent commission with expenses funded by the National Mining Association and focusing on technology and training solutions to the 2006 Sago Mine and Darby Mine disasters and to address proactively mine safety issues.
  • Coal & Energy Division Executive Committee, Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration, Inc., 2012-2015
  • Editor in Chief, Minerals, a new open access journal
  • For SME, coordinated the hosting by the SME Penn State Student Chapter of the National Science Teachers Association Annual Meeting on November 11-13, 2010, in Baltimore
  • OneMine Board of Directors, SME
  • National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), National Occupational Research Agenda (NORA) Mining Sector Council (member 2010-present)
  • Member, Education and Professional Strategic Committee, Society for Mining, Metallurgy and Exploration (2006-2008)
Awards: 

Awards and Recognitions

  • 2010 Wilson Faculty Mentoring Award, College of Earth & Mineral Sciences
  • 2008 Old Timers Club Faculty Award
  • 2007 Coal People Magazine featured professional, May, Vol. 29, No. 10
  • 2007 Sustained Excellence in Teaching Award 2006, School of Materials, Energy & Earth Resources, University of Missouri-Rolla
  • 2006 Selected to chair the Mine Safety Technology and Training Commission, an independent commission established by the National Mining Association
  • 2006 Sustained Excellence in Laboratory Instruction Award, School of Materials, Energy, and Earth Resources, University of Missouri-Rolla
  • 2004 Ivan Rahn Education Award, Society for Mining, Metallurgy, and Exploration
  • 2004 Distinguished Service Award, Coal Division, Society for Mining, Metallurgy, and Exploration
  • 2002 Distinguished Member of the Society for Mining, Metallurgy, and Exploration
  • 2001 Stephen McCann Award for Excellence in Education, given by the Pittsburgh Coal Mining Institute of America
  • 2001 Highest Degree of Safety award, 2000/2001, given by the International Society of Mine Safety Professionals
  • 2001 Appreciation Award for "Your Efforts to Improve Mine Safety and Health," CDC-NIOSH Mine Safety and Health Research Advisory Committee
  • 1999 Society for Mining, Metallurgy and Exploration Henry Krumb Lecturer
  • 1998 Senior Biomedical Research Service status, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for Outstanding Scientific Contributions in Public Health
  • NIOSH Alice Hamilton Award, Physical Science, as co-author on research article