Authors: Hefni, M; Hassani, FP; Nokken, M; Kermani, M; Vatne, D

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Hefni, M, Hassani, FP, Nokken, M, Kermani, M & Vatne, D 2014, 'Investigation into the development of foam mine fill', in Y Potvin & T Grice (eds), Proceedings of the Eleventh International Symposium on Mining with Backfill, Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, pp. 49-59,

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This study is part of large and an ongoing investigation into the development of a light-weight and highly fluid mine fill for various applications in mining and civil operations. Foam mine fill (FMF) is the new material proposed for backfilling mines, and is fabricated by mixing stable foam into a mixture of tailings, binders, and water. This paper presents the results of a preliminary experimental study, in which FMF samples were prepared under different binder dosages, pulp densities, and amount of air entrained. FMF samples were prepared using tailings from a copper mine as the inert material, Normal Portland Cement as the main binding agent, and a foaming agent with a foam generator. Samples were cured for 28 days and subjected to unconfined compressive strength (UCS) testing. Select samples were subjected to mercury intrusion porosimetry to study the microstructural properties. An empirical model was developed using a response surface methodology to determine the optimal settings for the factors investigated, and to produce the first reference sample with a 28 day UCS value of 1 MPa.

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