The Effect Of Weathering On Particle Shape Of Quest A Mine Material ? Preprint 09-018

Nunoo, S.
Organization: Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration
Pages: 15
Publication Date: Jan 1, 2009
The shape of particles has a significant effect on the shear strength and deformational characteristics of granular materials. Weathering can change the grain shapes. For example, more weathered sands tend to be rounder regardless of particle size. Particle shape analysis was performed on samples collected from the Questa mine rock piles, a debris flow and the pit alteration scar. In order to increase the validity of the particle shape analysis, 4 persons including 2 geologists and 2 mining engineers were involved in describing the particle shapes. The results of this analysis indicate that rock fragments in the collected samples are mainly subangular, subdiscoidal and subprismoidal. The sphericity and angularity of the rock fragments of the older analogs are similar to those of the rock piles. This suggests that short-term weathering (<100 years) has not noticeably changed the particle shapes at the test locations. Rock piles made of more angular particles are more stable compared to rock piles with rounded particles.
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