Authors: Read, JRL

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Read, JRL 2011, 'Addressing geotechnical data uncertainty and risk in open pit slope design', in Y Potvin (ed.), Strategic versus Tactical 2011: Proceedings of the Fourth International Seminar on Strategic versus Tactical Approaches in Mining, Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, pp. 331-338,

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Ground stability and wall slope design are fundamental variables in the economics of operating large open pit mines. The optimum open pit mine slope design is typically a balance between a slope angle that is as steep as possible, to maximise the resource, and one that can be safely and practicably mined. To achieve the right balance requires a strategic focus on the slope design process itself and a tactical focus on ensuring that: i) sufficient resources are available to gather the geotechnical data required for the design; ii) the level of confidence in the data is commensurate with the stage of project development; and that iii) sufficient resources are available to perform the systematic monitoring and periodic reviews and updates of the design criteria and mine plan necessary to reconcile the design intent versus the actual performance.

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