Design Considerations For Bump-Prone Longwall Mines

Chen, J.
Organization: International Conference on Ground Control in Mining
Pages: 12
Publication Date: Jan 1, 1999
Tailgate pillar and tailgate-face corner humps have been a major threat to longwall coal mines where hump-prone conditions exist. The yield pillar design concept, in which the longwall chain pillars are designed in such way that they can yield in a nonviolent or controlled manner during longwall retreat, has been used in many longwall mines to prevent tailgate pillar humps. However, this practice often shifts the side abutment load onto the tailgate-face corner especially when a massive and strong sandstone member is present within the caving zone or in the vicinity of the coal seam. Therefore, the abutment pillar design concept has also been used in some hump-prone coal mines to minimize the stress concentration on the tailgate panel rib for the control of tailgate-race corner humps. The disadvantage of using the abutment pillar design concept is that it is more costly and puts additional pressure on mine operations for gate entry development and significantly reduces the recovery of coal reserve. In addition to pillar size, panel layouts. such as the panel width and panel orientation also play a critical role in pillar or face humps and should he taken into account. Based Upon the Cyprus mine design and operational experiences at Willow Creek and case studies at other bump-prone longwall nines in the U.S., the authors attempt to identify the critical factors causing coal mine bumps and to introduce some guidelines and criteria for the design of both yield and abutment pillar systems and panel layouts.
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