Andrieux, PP, Brummer, RK, Li, H & O'Connor, CP 2007, 'Elastic Versus Inelastic Numerical Modelling of Deep and Highly Stressed Mining Fronts', in Y Potvin (ed.), Proceedings of the Fourth International Seminar on Deep and High Stress Mining
, Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Perth, pp. 51-64.
With the current trend of exploiting mines at increasing depths comes the challenge of managing
increasingly high stress conditions. One tool at the disposal of mine engineers and designers is the
numerical simulation of the stresses and deformations likely to be encountered ahead of the mining fronts for
various mining scenarios. Although the benefits of numerical modelling are by now well accepted throughout
the industry, the applicability of the various types of numerical modelling approaches is not always well
understood and still the subject of much debate.
This paper endeavours to explain the basic differences between the elastic and inelastic approaches, as well
as provide practical guidelines concerning which one to use for various sets of circumstances. Case studies
of high stress situations are provided that show where the simpler elastic approach was adequate, and where
implementing an inelastic approach was unavoidable. Some insight is also provided into the type of practical
information that can be extracted from advanced failure analyses (the exclusive domain of inelastic
techniques), such as determining the degree of failure of a rock mass by examining the stress state of its
failed zones, which indicates their position along the strain-softening post-peak response typical of hard rock
Andrieux, P., Hudyma, M., O’Connor, C., Li, H., Cotesta, L. and Brummer, R. (2008) (in preparation) Calibration of
Large-Scale Three-Dimensional Non-Linear Numerical Models of Underground Mines Using Microseismicity
Data. Proceedings 1st International FLAC/DEM Symposium, Minneapolis, MN, USA, August 2008.
Andrieux, P., Zhu, H., Labrie, D., Doucet, C., Lampron, S. and Fleury, D. (2004) Determination and Validation of the
Rock Mass Post-Peak Mechanical Properties for a 3DEC Strain-Softening Model of the 680 Sill Pillar at
Louvicourt Mine. In Numerical Modelling of Discrete Materials in Geotechnical Engineering, Civil Engineering
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Elastic Versus Inelastic Numerical Modelling of Deep and Highly Stressed Mining Fronts P.P. Andrieux, et al.
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