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ArticleName Stress–strain behavior assessment in rock mass and mine support systems on super deep levels in Skalisty Mine with regard to technology factor
DOI 10.17580/gzh.2023.01.19
ArticleAuthor Darbinyan T. P., Mushtekenov T. S., Tsymbalov A. A., Pleshko M. S.

NorNickel’s Polar Division, Norilsk, Russia:

T. P. Darbinyan, Director of Mining Practice Department, Candidate of Engineering Sciences,
T. S. Mushtekenov, Deputy Director for Mineral Resources
A. A. Tsymbalov, Director of Skalisty Mine


NUST MISIS’ College of Mining, Moscow, Russia:
M. S. Pleshko, Professor, Doctor of Engineering Sciences


Skalisty Mine of NorNickel’s Polar Division is the deepest operating mine in Eurasia. The access to deeplevel ore reserves is gained via vertical shafts VS-10 and SKS-1 and horizontal exploring openings RV-1 and RV-2. This article describes the procedure and main results of sci-tech supervision over super deep opening construction with regard to the adopted solutions on technology and equipment. The investigations used an integrated method including instrumental measurement of deformations in support systems, geophysical and geomechanical surveys, as well as numerical modeling. The in situ measurements of deformations agree well with the finite element method-based calculations. The main support system in shaft SKS-1 possesses a high load-bearing capacity over long intervals. The geophysical survey data agree with the geomechanical estimates of adjacent rock mass surrounding horizontal openings RV-1 and RV-2. The temporal and permanent support systems in openings RV-1 and RV-2 have a uniform structure without cracks, and the shotcrete and rock cohesion at the interfaces is good, which implies normal duty of the support systems. Thus, the accepted technology of heading with installation of the main support at a lag up to 30 m behind the face has ensured the rock mass pre-relaxation from stressed and the stability of the opening in the field of unequal horizontal tectonic stresses of high intensity. For this reason, it is important to continue monitoring of deep-level openings during their operation in Skalisty Mine.

keywords Underground opening, mine support system, rock mass, heading technology, monitoring, stresses, deformations, stability

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