Authors: Beer, AJ

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Beer, AJ 2023, 'A case study of a waste dump design for oxidised material in a Western Australian mine', in PM Dight (ed.), SSIM 2023: Third International Slope Stability in Mining Conference, Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, pp. 261-276,

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This paper uses a design review for an in-pit waste dump in partly to fully oxidised material as a case study to discuss the generalised processes adopted in geotechnical design (or validation of a mining design) for waste dumps. The example used is for a West Australian open pit nickel mine in an area of moderate rainfall, with the mining above the natural groundwater table. Issues addressed in detail include methods for material characterisation (laboratory testing, or empirical relationships available in the literature, backanalysis), factors influencing the stability of different parts of the dump (dump base, main dump body and tip face), rationale behind selecting the appropriate shear strength model types for modelling the dump material, simulation of runoff for surface-water management design, effects of loading the tip head by vehicles operating nearby, influence of water, foundation conditions and their assessment and practical considerations for dump operation. The role of back-analysis and assessment of tip face angles in selecting appropriate material properties for modelling is also described.

Keywords: waste dump design, material characterisation, slope design principles, operational considerations for waste dumps

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