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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

J. S. Afr. Inst. Min. Metall. vol.108 n.8 Johannesburg Aug. 2008




An investigation of mechanisms involved in backfill-rock mass behaviour in narrow vein mining



F.P. HassaniI; A. MortazaviII; M. ShabaniII

IDepartment of Mining and Material Engineering, McGill University, Montreal, Canada
IIDepartment of Mining and Metallurgical Engineering, Amirkabir University of Technology, Tehran, Iran




Today, mine backfilling has become an integral part of mining operations, both from a local and overall ground control point of view, and as regards mining techniques and environmental considerations. During the past decade, substantial research has been carried out to contribute to the better understanding of the mechanisms involved in mine backfill behaviour. This work involved analytical, experimental and numerical studies at different scales. Accordingly, this work has been aimed at developing backfill design guidelines for actual working conditions. Backfill design for deep mining conditions is complex and requires understanding of various elements. The most important of these elements are: backfill inherent strength parameters, backfill placement method, stope geometry and interaction between backfill and host rock. The mobilization of backfill strength parameters controls the backfill behaviour and thus, its failure mode. It is believed that the governing boundary conditions and backfill-rock interaction influence the backfill strength mobilization significantly. Accordingly, the interaction between backfill and host rock is an influential factor in overall backfill behaviour under applied loads. The focus of this research is to investigate the backfill-rock interaction, considering a nonlinear behaviour for both backfill and rock mass. Assuming typical stope geometry, the FLAC code was used to model the complex boundary condition associated with narrow vein mining conditions and to simulate the backfill behaviour. A comprehensive numerical study was conducted and the results obtained were compared against field observations. The analysis of findings provides qualitative results, which can be used for backfill design.

Keywords: Numerical modelling, backfill, deep mining, nonlinear behaviour, rock mechanics, backfill behaviour, narrow vein mining



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