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ArticleName Optimizing parameters of stopes and pillars for the Zhdanov deposit mining
DOI 10.17580/em.2019.01.03
ArticleAuthor Kulkova M. S., Zemtsovsky A. V.

Mining Institute Kola Science Center, Russian Academy of Sciences, Apatity, Russia:

Kulkova M. S., Post-graduate Student, Research Assistant
Zemtsovsky A. V., Senior Researcher, Candidate of Engineering Sciences,


The article discusses underground mining of the Zhdanov deposit which is located in the Pechenga area of the Murmansk Region and is one of the largest copper–nickel accumulations in Russia. The project involves several mining systems governed by geological conditions. For instance, reserves of the South-East ore body are extracted by open stoping. Application of this system needs optimizing dimensions of stopes and pillars based on the criteria of mining safety and efficiency. The problem is growing more critical as mining goes to deeper levels while geological and geotechnical conditions worsen. The stress state analysis of rock mass enclosing the South-East ore body used 2D finite element-based numerical modeling. As a result, the data on distribution of effective stresses in rocks mass with stopes and pillars of various dimensions have been obtained. These data help finding optimal sizes of stopes and pillars to keep stable. The research findings can reduce valuable ore loss in pillars and improve mining safety.

keywords Pechenga ore field, Zhdanov deposit, copper–nickel ore, numerical stress state modeling, optimal sizes of stopes and pillars, stress distribution, mining safety, damage of underground openings, stable condition

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