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Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy

On-line version ISSN 2411-9717
Print version ISSN 0038-223X


SONG, G.  and  YANG, S.. Investigation into strata behaviour and fractured zone height in a high-seam longwall coal mine. J. S. Afr. Inst. Min. Metall. [online]. 2015, vol.115, n.8, pp.781-788. ISSN 2411-9717.

The development of techniques and equipment for single-pass high-seam longwall mining in China is reviewed. Some methods used to obtain the fractured zone height are discussed. The boundary between the caved and fractured zones is generally not clear, but one important difference that distinguishes the two zones is that horizontal compressional forces exist only between blocks of fractured zone. Based on this, a theoretical method is presented to investigate the destabilizing modes of the main roof (by sliding or rotation) and is used to determine if the main roof is in the caved or fractured zone. This method considers the mining height, immediate roof thickness, bulking factor, main roof thickness, main roof strength, main roof periodic weighting interval, and vertical stress in the overlying strata. To verify the method, a representative physical model of Wangzhuang coal mine is developed. The movement of overlying strata and fractured zone height are thus obtained. According to the results, the total collapsed height of the strata reaches about 70 m above the coal floor; the first main roof bending interval is 45 m and periodic bending distance is 10-15 m; the maximum strata subsidence is around 62 mm; and the presence of a three-hinged arch causes the fluctuation of subsidence in the same stratum level. Based on the theoretical and experimental analysis, the middle of the main roof is considered the boundary between caved and fractured zone; the caved and fractured zone heights are about 21 and 49 m respectively.

Keywords : thick coal seam; single-pass longwall mining; physical modelling; bulking factor; caved zone; fractured zone; roof strata behaviour.

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