Archive for the ‘Open Pit’ Category


These past two days I have had to deal with that knotty subject, computer modeling for mines. I proposed a series of 2D runs in order to get a feel for how groundwater flows into an open pit and from the tailings facility. The younger generation cried in horror at my simplicity.  “We need 3D models to truly replicate the situations,” they protested. I protested: “We are not modeling things on the computer in order to replicate reality and create an electronic simulacrum of what is in nature.” (more…)

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For those with a taste for trivia, here is a link to a site that lists the biggest mine open pits and the deepest mine shafts. They also have some great photos of the pits and shafts.  Well worth the click to see all this and to add to your store of “general knowledge about mining.” (more…)

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As a consultant you can only advise.  You cannot force.  You can only provide your professional opinion.  You cannot make the client do the right thing.  You can set out facts and possible consequences.  You cannot make the outcome be what you desire or believe it should be. (more…)

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A massive slope failure has occurred at the open pit of the Bingham Canyon Mine in Utah.  Here is a link to a magnificent collection of photographs of the failure, which appears to have taken out part of a building, access roads, and filled the bottom of the pit with slide material.  Nobody was hurt: the mine had been monitoring movement and when deformation increased from 1 mm a day to 5 mms day they pulled out all workers.  A fine testament to the engineers who study rock and soil slope stability in the open pit mine context.  (more…)

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Live today on EduMine is a new course: Introduction to Groundwater Modeling for Mines and Mining.  The authors are myself and Bernard Brixel.  Murray Fredlund and his folk at SoilVision contributed good computer models. (more…)

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There is more civil engineering in mining than there is mining engineering in mining.  To substantiate this controversial statement let me repeat below something I wrote a long time ago.  (more…)

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The night is waning into dawn, and the air is thick with smoke and desperate moves.  The mine mill is still churning off in the distance. The odds are against you – what to do? (more…)

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