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Initial stope spans and ground reinforcement designs at a gold mine in Western Australia were based on rock mass classification and empirical methods. As stoping experience was gained, these designs were found to be conservative and gradually the spans were increased. Back-analysis of stoping performance provided an insight into the factors controlling failure and dilution. Reinforcement designs were modified with ongoing stoping experience to minimise dilution. Stope designs were subsequently optimised, allowing larger stopes to remain stable using the modified reinforcement designs.
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