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High Wall Surveying (Open-cut Mine Surveying Duties)

Modern mining processes have derived from a long history of research and observations to ensure the most efficient and safest progression of the mine can occur. One of many tasks for Geotechnical engineers in mining is to assess or monitor the stability of materials or high walls. Surveyors can assist with their duties by positioning various instruments for them as well as maintaining records of high wall information. It is important to locate inconsistencies, cracking, or major problems observed in high walls.


Example #1: High wall scan


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An effective method of collecting high wall data is through the use of an automated scanner. The example above shows the data you can expect to collect which demonstrates a basic method of viewing the shape of a high wall and determining if problems exist. Geotechnical engineers can also use this data to determine the slope or direction of joint planes in the wall which can be used in a series of calculations to determine characteristics about the high wall.


Example #2: High wall data used in Drill & Blast Design


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The data collected from high walls is also used by engineers in drill and blast design. It allows optimal positioning of drill holes where explosives will be loaded to ensure that the result of a blast will be easy to excavate, be thrown in the desired direction, provide acceptable pressure and noise levels, and won't cause vibration issues.


Example #3: Conventional high wall pickup

    
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If an automated laser scanner is not available, high wall information can still be collected with conventional methods such as a reflector-less laser. The data isn't as dense and the surveyor needs to focus on picking up features of importance, however it is just as useful in the overall scheme of things.


Example #4: High wall failure


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Open-cut Mine Surveying Duties