Reliable Mine Planning in a Thick Undulating Coal Seam Based on Long-hole Directional Drilling

Fowke NC, ; Williams RJ, ; Hungerford F,
Organization: The Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Pages: 7
Publication Date: Jan 1, 1991
In-seam, directional drilling has been implemented at Huntly West Mine, New Zealand as the most cost effective means of obtaining geological information at a level of detail and accuracy required for planning of longwall ("flexiwall") panels. No geological or geophysical technique tried at the mine prior to 1989 has been able to reduce geological risk to an acceptable level. Surface and in-seam seismic methods have not had adequate resolution. Obtaining the required knowledge via surface drilling would be prohibitively costly, and still not precisely locate or orient faults or the axes of seam "ridges and valleys".A total of 3543 m was drilled at an average of 67m/shift including setting up time. Unplanned delays totalled only 9.6 percent. Major re-interpretation of seam structure resulted from the drilling. Lateral and longitudinal panel grades have been defined. which should be negotiable with the Coalcorp longwall equipment.
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