Textural Analysis Provides Clue to Poor Ground Conditions in a Saskatchewan Potash Mine

CIM Edmonton 2004
Abstract In 2001, at the CIM AGM in Quebec, a paper discussing poor ground conditions in a newly opened area at Agrium's Vanscoy Potash Operation's, suggested load transfer around old workings as a possible reason for the early room failure. High closure rates are expected in deeper regions however the rapid failure of walls immediately behind the face resulted in protective guards being mounted on and behind the borer. The high closure and early rib failure continued well past any reasonable distance to be explained by load transfer around old workings and investigations continued into possible reasons other than simply depth. Detailed investigations into the mineralogy and crystal fabric of the ore zone provided one possibility which combined with a changed borer cutting profile are now believed to have resulted in the poor conditions.
Keywords: Rock mechanics, Potash, Geology
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