Measurement Of Typical Joint Characteristics In South African Gold Mines And The Use Of These Characteristics In The Prediction Of Rock Falls

Gumede, H.
Organization: The Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Pages: 10
Publication Date: Jan 1, 2007
The occurrence of fracturing due to high stress levels is a major factor in hangingwall stability in deep level gold mine stopes. However, rock falls cannot be the result of these fractures alone. Rock falls can result only from the occurrence of unstable rock blocks defined by the interaction of the stress induced fractures and naturally occurring geological planes of weakness. These planes include bedding planes and joint set planes. However, there is a general lack of information on the characteristics of these planes (orientations, spacings and lengths)?it does not appear that any such systematic and quantified information, if collected, has been published. To remedy this situation to some extent, joint mapping exercises have been carried out in several geological environments in two gold mines. The data collected on joint geometry included orientation, spacing and length, and this information is included in the paper. In addition, the paper describes the use of the data collected to evaluate the potential for rock falls and the probability of failure of stope support
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