Simulation of Narrow Vein Mining with Consideration for Underground Pre-concentration
2nd Int'l Symposium on Mining Techniques of Narrow-Vein Deposits
Malcolm Scoble, Andrew Bamber,
The application of underground pre-concentration technology (sorting) to narrow vein mining has the potential to change the entire economics of bulk mining methods when used in narrow vein situations. The rejection of waste at or near the face means that a higher-grade ore can be sent to surface. The waste rock can be reused directly as backfill. Swelling of the muck through blasting means that only about 60 to 65% can be used as fill. Planning and scheduling of the fill usage is key to the success of this method. Through the use of simulation and system analysis, this paper examines the planning and scheduling implications of underground pre-concentration when applied to traditional narrow vein mining methods (cut-and-fill /drift-and-fill, longhole, Avoca). It considers the logistical factors that represent potential system bottlenecks that are key to understanding control strategies.