Authors: Seddon, KD; Williams, MPA

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Seddon, KD & Williams, MPA 2010, 'The development and design of thickened tailings discharge methods – a review', in R Jewell & AB Fourie (eds), Proceedings of the First International Seminar on the Reduction of Risk in the Management of Tailings and Mine Waste, Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, pp. 487-498.

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Abstract:
The development of the thickened tailings disposal technique presents a new paradigm in tailings disposal. It results in a total revision of the risk profile of a tailings storage facility (TSF), and may provide significant savings in both cost and water consumption. The method was developed by Robinsky (1975), who identified that thickening the tailings stream would create a non-segregating slurry and that a steeper overall beach angle could be achieved. The outcome is the elimination, or the substantial reduction in size of retaining embankments. This has obvious benefits. The paper reviews the development history, and the key design and behavioural parameters that are needed for thickened tailings schemes, with an emphasis on the understanding of the fundamental geotechnical issues.

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