Comparative Case Study Of Yielding And Critical Coal Pillar Designs In Bump-Prone Strata

Koehler, J. R.
Organization: International Conference on Ground Control in Mining
Pages: 12
Publication Date: Jan 1, 1995
The failure of yield pillar-based gate mad designs to provide adequate ground control performance is primarily related to the use of "critically" sized chain pillars. A "critical" pillar is one that falls into a range of pillar sizes that are too large to either yield nonviolently or yield before the roof and floor sustain permanent damage, but are too small to support full longwall abutment loads. To directly compare the in-mine performance of critical and yielding pillar designs, the U.S. Bureau of Mines recently completed a field study in a tapering gate road at the Sunnyside No. 1 Mine, Sunnyside, UT. Extreme pillar stresses and associated coal bumps characterize the response to first panel mining of a 16.8-m-wide critical design. Significantly lower pillar stresses, early yielding of the pillar and adjacent panel rib, and an absence of coal bumps suggest that a narrower 12.2-m-wide design more closely approaches proper yield pillar dimensions. Probehole drilling of several 10.6-m-wide pillars revealed low stress levels and substantial pillar and panel rib yielding prior to abutment onset. suggesting a properly functioning yield pillar design.
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