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ArticleName Selection of mining technology at Anhydrite Mine
DOI 10.17580/gzh.2023.05.17
ArticleAuthor Suchilin A. V., Andreev A. A., Vasiliev D. A., Rakov I. V.

Research Center for Geomechanics and Mining Practice Problems, Saint-Petersburg Mining University, Saint-Petersburg, Russia:

A. V. Suchilin, Chief Project Manager
A. A. Andreev, Leading Engineer,
D. A. Vasiliev, Leading Engineer


NorNickel’s Polar Division, Norilsk, Russia:
I. V. Rakov, Head of Project Office


The article discusses selection of an optimal method of anhydrite breaking in an underground mine. The mine is located in the Norilsk industrial area, and the mining products are used as a feedstock in manufacture of backfill mixtures which are involved in mining sulphide copper–nickel ore in the Talnakh ore cluster. The results of selecting an optimal technology for breaking anhydrite with regard to operating features and location of the test mine are described. The current mining technology is drilling and blasting. Within the framework of the project studies into the feasibility of increasing production of anhydrite, alternative technologies were examined, including mechanical cutting by roadheaders. The comparison of the drilling and blasting and mechanical cutting by roadheaders used the production data and economic performance. In terms of the production data, the required modification of activities and the anticipated economic effect are analyzed. The accomplished comparison by the technological, organizational and economic factors shows that transition to another technology of anhydrite production is inexpedient for a few reasons, namely: the risk of an unpredictable decrease in production output or a layoff can adversely affect performance of the main copper–nickel mines in the Norilsk area, which is unallowable; the increase in the production cost contradicts the mine’s interests in terms of efficiency enhancement and cost saving. At the same time, the choice of the described alternative has a high potential of production increase and cost saving upon condition of adapting the proposed equipment to the specific geological conditions of the mine. The article may be interesting for specialists in design and mining.
The authors appreciate participation of V. N. Lebedev from NorNickel’s Polar Division in this study.

keywords Anhydrite, underground mine, room-and-pillar mining, drilling and blasting, roadheader, production output, cost reduction, production cost

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