The New Red Lake Mine: Narrow Vein Mining in Deep, Burst-Prone Ground
Symposium on Vein Deposits
The Red Lake Mine is located approximately 600 km Northwest of Thunder Bay. This 600 tpd underground narrow vein gold operation is set to produce in excess of 400,000 ounces annually beginning in 2001 at a cash operating cost below 75 U$/oz. The high-grade nature of this deposit (>1.6 opt) coupled with a complex geological environment and relatively deep location of the ore body dictated the choice of a very selective mining method. As a result, Mechanized Overhand Cut and Fill (using paste fill) was selected as the primary mining method; anticipating adverse ground conditions during the later stage of extraction, sill pillars will be recovered using longhole mining. Mine design issues such as stope size, extraction sequence, dilution control, requirements for yieldable ground support and seismic monitoring are being discussed in this paper.