Authors: Hutchinson, DJ

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Hutchinson, DJ 2023, 'Integrating monitoring data into risk assessment and management for rock slopes', in PM Dight (ed.), SSIM 2023: Third International Slope Stability in Mining Conference, Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, pp. 55-64,

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Large open pit and natural rock slope monitoring methods have become increasingly available and useful with advances in equipment, analysis techniques and data integration. The toolbox of remote and in situ instrumentation provides a wealth of opportunities to collect data and inform deformation-based analyses. As a result, observational design approaches are increasingly being adopted and are of benefit, as long as they are well integrated into risk assessments and the consequence of potential failures is well understood. As monitoring data becomes increasingly available, we are able to consider the deformation capacity of slopes, particularly in post failure event back-analyses. The capacity for slope deformation prior to failure ranges from very small to very large strains, depending on the failure mechanism, which, in turn, depends on the geological and rock mass characteristics. Small strain deformations and failure modes must be identified early, so that the risk of failure can be assessed and mitigated if required. This relies on understanding the geological setting, and, in particular, the structural controls on the slope’s stability. Case histories from several locations will be discussed within this framework.

Keywords: rock slope instability, remote sensing, deformation monitoring

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