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Underground Stability Assessments

Make sure underground stability assessments in your mine are performed by people with the right training and background.

Stability in the underground environment requires serious consideration. When parts of the mine or its surrounding geological formations become unstable, productivity and safety are threatened. Due to this, it is important that proper underground stability assessments are performed throughout the life of mine as a part of an ongoing monitoring process.

Blasting is an integral part of underground mining operations, as this is the beginning of the cycle that leads to the extraction of valuable materials – the reason for the existence of the mine in the first place. However, blasting operations to create the very openings that facilitate the act of mining can also cause significant seismic effects within an underground mine. This adds dynamic stresses to the already-existing static stress state, therefore requiring that serious consideration to be given to the excavation sequencing and the ground support applied.

As a result, it is important that regular underground stability assessments are carried out to highlight any current, potential, or evolving risks. Once these assessments have been performed, measures can be put in place to minimize risks, for example by changing or adding to support systems to control the effects of both static and dynamic stresses within the mine.

To truly add value to an underground mining operation, underground stability assessments must be properly and routinely performed by competent, experienced people with the right skill sets.

At Mine Design Engineering (MDEng), we have a team of engineers who are highly trained, skilled and experienced in their various disciplines and areas of expertise, including performing comprehensive underground stability assessments.