Requirements for Paste Backfill Preparation in Narrow-Vein Mining.

Symposium on Vein Deposits
Dan G. Millette,
Abstract The introduction and application of of paste backfill over the past two decades has resulted in substantial benefits being realised by many backfill-reliant minig operations who have used this technology. Paste preparation over this time period has relied basically on mechanical dewatering approaches that have included the use of centrifuges,vacuum and pressure filtration. In large bulk mining operations, this method of paste preparation has usally involved the construction of big and complex surface plants to meet the large tonnage demands for fill. These plants generally involve high capital, maintenance and operating costs.

The application of paste backfill in narrow-vein mining requires more flexibility in terms of fill preparation, transportation and placement. The method of paste fill preparation should take into consideration low manufacturing and operating costs, ability to use existing facilities at mine sites, simplicity of operation and flexibility to prepare paste over a broad range of consistencies. This paper will review alternative paste fill preparation methods and indicate those that might be better suited to narrow-vein mining.
Keywords: Mechanical dewatering, Fill placement, Fill preparation, Narrow-vein mining, Fill transportation, Backfill, Paste
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