Requirements for Underground Mine Backfill Monitoring.

CIM MineSpace 2001
David DeGagne, Euler De Souza, Jacques Nantel,
Abstract While mine backfill plants are becoming increasingly more automated and instrumented, especially with paste fill operations, underground backfill distribution systems have hardly changed over the years. While fill properties are appropriately measured in the preparation plants, as backfill enters the mine borehole, the technology for control, data gathering and reporting is somewhat lacking.

Many mines are experiencing problems with borehole and pipeline plugging, pipeline bursting, bulkhead failure and exposed fill sloughing. With adequate instrumentation of the backfill system it may be possible to obtain a complete, continuous and detailed picture of the entire filling operation from preparation to post-pour. Good data will, over time, provide the basis for needed improvements of backfill systems and will be essential to safer, more efficient and less costly fill practices.

This paper will review the areas of the filling operations where monitoring would prove critical to eliminate failures such as pipelines, bulkheads, fill exposures, stope walls, etc. The types of monitoring systems currently available will be reviewed and potential areas for development will be highlighted.
Keywords: Backfill, Safety, Instrumentation, Monitoring
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