Authors: Sjöberg, J

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DOI https://doi.org/10.36487/ACG_repo/2035_0.02

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Sjöberg, J 2020, 'Solving rock mechanics issues through modelling: then, now, and in the future?', in J Wesseloo (ed.), Proceedings of the Second International Conference on Underground Mining Technology, Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, pp. 27-46, https://doi.org/10.36487/ACG_repo/2035_0.02

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Abstract:
There is no dispute about the advances in numerical modelling for rock mechanics applications following its debut in engineering science some 50 years ago. Significant strides have been made since the days of punch cards and line printers, with modelling tools now being easy to use and capable of replicating many, but not all, aspects of rock behaviour. This paper explores some common rock mechanics problems in underground mining, and how these have been addressed through numerical modelling. The described issues include pillar design, ground support, caving prediction and ground subsidence, and mining-induced seismicity. Examples of how modelling technology has evolved over the years are given, while also pointing out current gaps and limitations in the technology. Finally, an outlook for the future is presented, including some of the challenges we are facing. An increased fundamental understanding of many rock mechanics issues is still required, but eventually one may envision a deep integration of rock mechanical modelling into mine planning and production, for a more sustainable future mining.

Keywords: numerical modelling, ground support, caving, mining seismicity, mine planning, design integration

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