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|The problems associated with underground mining continue to grow in size and complexity. As a result mine management is becoming aware of the benefits that can be achieved through the use of computer-oriented tools for system analysis. When such tools are employed in conjunction with benchmarking practices, the drivers of the system that lead to superior performance can more easily be determined. This paper discusses the use of the Simulation Language for Alternative Modelling (SLAM II) in the determination of the drivers of an underground room-and-pillar mining system. The mining operations included in the model consist of extracting, loading and hauling of the coal using continuous mining equipment in a room and pillar system. Equipment specifications and mining techniques used in the model are based upon current methods employed at the existing underground coal mines worldwide. The model developed is capable of adequately predicting the operational performance of the real world system from a statistical point of view. The results from the study show that computer simulation is an excellent tool for evaluating various mine configurations and for gaining a better understanding of the mining systems.|