Authors: Albrecht, JB; Gibson, WH; Vakili, A; Sandy, MP; Ross, K


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Albrecht, JB, Gibson, WH, Vakili, A, Sandy, MP & Ross, K 2010, 'Application of advanced numerical modelling techniques for the assessment of caveability, subsidence and airblast hazard in a sublevel cave mine', in Y Potvin (ed.), Proceedings of the Second International Symposium on Block and Sublevel Caving, Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, pp. 495-508,

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As part of a feasibility study for a sublevel caving mine, a range of numerical modelling codes was used to study the major geotechnical risks involved. The key objectives of the numerical modelling study included: crown pillar stability assessment, hangingwall caveability assessment, surface subsidence analysis and investigation of the potential airblast hazard. Finite difference, finite element and distinct element methods were used for the modelling analysis in this study. The numerical analyses indicated that continuous caving of the hangingwall was unlikely and that negligible surface subsidence would occur. An assessment of airblast hazard was also conducted as part of this study, using the results of the hangingwall stability analysis together with some theoretical calculations. The results of this study were used to design suitable airblast barricades and to quantify the minimum height of broken rock material required above each draw point location to reduce the airblast hazard to an acceptable level. The results of the analyses described above were incorporated into a formal risk assessment to evaluate and rank the inherent risks in the project, including those associated with geomechanics aspects.

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