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|Longwall mining in Australia is approaching maturity. Longwall production from 'state of the art' Australian longwall mines now rivals similar US based longwall operations. Regrettably however, Australian gate road development rates in general fall short of the required development to longwall production ratios that are required to sustain annual longwall production capabilities. By contrast, most US based longwall mines achieve the required development to longwall production ratios to sustain their longwalls. This is despite many having to drive three heading longwall panel gate headings to meet regulatory requirements.|