Square Set Timber in Load-Haul-Dump Stopes at the Bunker Hill Mine, Kellogg, Idaho

Songstead, John
Organization: Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration
Pages: 5
Publication Date: Jan 1, 1982
INTRODUCTION The Bunker Hill mine, located at Kellogg, ID, in the Coeur d'Alene mining district, has been a major pro¬ducer of lead-zinc-silver ore since 1887. Since its dis¬covery, it has produced over 25 401 171 t (28 million st) of ore from 20 to 25 veins and ore zones. The mine now covers an area of approximately 1.609 km (1 mile) in length and 0.8 km (1/2 mile) in width and extends from 1097 m (3600 ft) above sea level to 488 m (1600 ft) below sea level. Production is presently at a rate of 1542 t/d (1700 stpd). During 1965, a new stoping method, the Bunker Hill pillar system, was developed to enable the profitable mining of large, low-grade zinc ore bodies. The system was specifically designed to in¬corporate the Atlas Copco T26GH rubber-tired loaders. High productivities were achieved, and the method was adapted for mining the higher grade stopes where large timber square sets are utilized. This results in nearly 100% extraction. GEOLOGY The area encompassing the Bunker Hill mine lies immediately south of the Osburn fault, a major east-west striking, deep-seated strike slip fault which is the dominant structural feature in the Coeur d'Alene district. The Bunker Hill forms a series of veins and mineralized zones which occur as link structures, tension fractures, and breccia zones in folded, interbedded argillaceous quartzites of the Revett and St. Regis formations of the Precambrian belt series. The Rosco ore body is predominantly a zinc ore body above the Cate fault, which is presently known to occur from the 13 level. [elevation 488 m (1600 ft)] to the 1600 level [elevation 304 m (1000 ft) ]. These ore bodies are stringer zones with at least one dominant 1.8 to 4.5 m (6 to 15 ft) wide band of ore. They dip 0.09 to 0.26 rad (5° to 15°) steeper than the local 0.61 rad (35°) dip of the Cate fault, and also deviate 0.26 to 0.52 rad (15° to 30°) in strike from the Cate. Because of the flat dip and fractured weak hanging wall, normal cut-and-fill mining has not proven practical in this ore body. The mechanized timber methods described in the next section and the Bunker Hill pillar system are the mining methods successfully used. MINING METHODS While pillar stoping and mechanized cut-and-fill stop¬ing methods were obviously superior to the widely used timber stoping methods, as far as cost and productivity
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