Mining of Mineral Deposits

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ISSN 2415-3435 (Print)

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Effect of blast induced rock fragmentation and muckpile angle on excavator performance in surface mines

B.S. Choudhary1

1Indian Institute of Technology (Indian School of Mines), Dhanbad, India

Min. miner. depos. 2019, 13(3):119-126

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      Purpose. A fit excavator in a surface mine gives a trouble free production. To maintain the condition and safety of an excavator, proper sizes of rock fragmentation and muckpile parameters are crucial besides its maintenance. Optimum size of fragmentation and muckpile shape parameters increases the production hours of an excavator so study was conducted to investigate the effect of blast induced rock fragmentation and muckpile angle on excavator performance.

      Methods. The study was conducted in two different surface coal mines namely A and B of India. Drilling, blas-ting and shovel-Dumper combination were used in mines for overburden removal and as well as coal production. The trial blasts were conducted in surface mines to investigate the effect of rock fragmentation and muckpile angle on excavator performance.

      Findings. The results obtained from this study indicate that the fragmentation size should be optimum with respect to bucket size of the excavator so that the excavator can load more material in less time. Also, muckpile should be loose, with proper muckpile angle. The results of this study show that the cycle time of the excavator is minimum at fragment size of 0.30 – 0.45 and 0.15 – 0.20 m for mine A and B respectively and muckpile angle in the range of 52 – 58 degree for both mine.

      Originality. This study is a field based study and the results are based on the data collected and analyzed. Similar type of studies have been done by few researchers though to improve the productivity of the mine for different conditions. The results are condition, machinery, method and mine specific.

      Practical implications. This study was conducted for surface coal mines but it is applicable for limestone and stone quarry also.

      Keywords: surface mine, mean fragmentation size, muckpile angle, explosive, blasting, excavator


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