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dc.contributor.authorMonsalve, Juan J.
dc.date.accessioned2019-06-26T12:47:47Z
dc.date.available2019-06-26T12:47:47Z
dc.date.issued2019-05-10
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10919/90659
dc.description.abstractAccording to the Mine Health and Safety Administration (MSHA), between 2006 and 2016, the underground stone mining industry had the highest fatality rate in 4 out of 10 years, compared to any other type of mining in the United States. Additionally, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) stated that structurally controlled instability is a predominant failure mechanism in underground limestone mines. This type of instability occurs when the different discontinuity sets intercept with each other forming rock blocks that displace inwards the tunnel as the excavation takes place, posing a great hazard for miners and overall mine planning. In recent years, Terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) has been used for mapping and characterizing fractures present in a rock mass. TLS is a technology that allows to generate a three-dimensional multimillion point cloud of a scanned area. In addition to this, the advances in computing power throughout the past years, have allowed numerical modeling codes to represent more realistically the behavior of a fractured rock masses. This work presents and implements a methodology that integrates laser scanning technology along with Discrete Element Modeling as tools for characterizing, preventing, and managing structurally controlled instability that may affect large-opening underground mines. The stability of an underground limestone mine that extracts a dipping ore body with a room and pillar (and eventual stoping) mining method is analyzed with this approach. While this methodology is proposed based on a specific case study that does not meet the requirements to be designed with current NIOSH published guidelines, this process proposes a general methodology that can be applied in any mine experiencing similar failure mechanisms, considering site-specific conditions. The aim of this study is to ensure the safety of mine workers and to reduce accidents that arise from ground control issues. The results obtained from this methodology allowed us to generate Probability Density Functions to estimate the probability of rock fall in the excavations. These models were also validated by comparing the numerical model results with those obtained from the laser scans.en_US
dc.format.mediumETDen_US
dc.language.isoen_USen_US
dc.publisherVirginia Techen_US
dc.rightsAttribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 United States*
dc.rights.urihttp://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/us/*
dc.subjectTerrestrial Laser Scanningen_US
dc.subjectDiscrete Element Methoden_US
dc.subject3DECen_US
dc.subjectDiscrete Fracture Networken_US
dc.subjectGround Controlen_US
dc.subjectUnderground Limestone Minesen_US
dc.titleIntegrating Laser Scanning with Discrete Element Modeling for Improving Safety in Underground Stone Minesen_US
dc.typeThesisen_US
dc.contributor.departmentMining and Minerals Engineeringen_US
dc.description.degreeM.S.en_US
thesis.degree.nameM.S.en_US
thesis.degree.levelmastersen_US
thesis.degree.grantorVirginia Polytechnic Institute and State Universityen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineMining Engineeringen_US
dc.contributor.committeechairRipepi, Nino S.
dc.contributor.committeememberKarfakis, Mario G.
dc.contributor.committeememberChen, Cheng
dc.contributor.committeememberHazzard, Jim
dc.description.abstractgeneralAccording to the Mine Health and Safety Administration (MSHA), between 2006 and 2016, the underground stone mining industry had the highest fatality rate in 4 out of 10 years, compared to any other type of mining in the United States. Additionally, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) stated that structurally controlled instability is one of the main causes of rock falls in underground limestone mines. This type of instability occurs when the fractures present in the rock mass intercept each other forming rock blocks that displace into the tunnel as the excavation takes place and poses a great hazard for miners. In recent years, Terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) has been used for mapping and characterizing fractures present in a rock mass. TLS is a technology that allows to generate a three-dimensional multimillion point cloud of a scanned area. In addition to this, the advances in computing power throughout the past years, have allowed simulation softwares such as the Discrete Element Model (DEM) to represent more realistically the behavior of a fractured rock mass under excavation. The aim of this work was to develop and evaluate a methodology that could complement already exisiting design guidelines that may not apply to all kind of underground mines. The presented methodology evaluates rock failure due to presence of discontinuites, through the integration of TLS with DEM and considers site specific conditions. An area of a case study mine was assessed with this methodology, where several laser scans were performed. Information extracted from this laser scans was used to simulate the response of the rock mass under excavation by running Discrete Element Numerical Models. Results from these models allowed us to estimate the probability of rock failure in the analized areas. These, rock block failure probability estimations provide engineers a tool for characterizing, preventing, and managing structurally controlled instability, and ultimately improving workers safety.en_US


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