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Draw control strategies in sublevel caving mines: A baseline mapping of LKAB's Malmberget and Kiirunavaara mines
Luleå University of Technology, Department of Civil, Environmental and Natural Resources Engineering, Mining and Geotechnical Engineering.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-8264-1255
Luleå University of Technology, Department of Civil, Environmental and Natural Resources Engineering, Mining and Geotechnical Engineering.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5347-0853
Luossave-Kiirunavaara AB, Kiruna, Sweden.
Luossave-Kiirunavaara AB, Kiruna, Sweden.
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2018 (English)In: The Southern African Journal of Mining and Metallurgy, ISSN 2225-6253, E-ISSN 1543-9518, Vol. 118, no 7, p. 723-733Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The Malmberget and Kiirunavaara mines are the two largest underground iron ore operations in the world. Luossavaara-Kiirunavaara AB (LKAB) uses sublevel caving (SLC) to operate the mines while maintaining a high level of productivity and safety. The paper enumerates the loading criteria and loading constraints at the mines and outlines details of mine design, layout, and geology affecting the draw control. A study of the various draw control strategies used in sublevel caving operations globally has also been done to establish the present state-of-the-art. An analysis of the draw control and loading operations at the Malmberget and Kiirunavaara mines is summarized using information collected through interviews, internal documents, meetings, and manuals. An optimized draw control strategy is vital for improving ore recovery and reducing dilution in SLC. Based on the literature review and baseline mapping study, a set of guidelines for designing a new draw control strategy is presented. The draw control strategy at Malmberget and Kiirunavaara is guided by a bucket-weightbased drawpoint monitoring system that is part of the overall framework. Both mines employ a draw control strategy that considers the production requirements and mining constraints while regulating the loading process through an empirical method based on bucket weights and grades. However, in the present scenario of fluctuating metal prices and increasing operational costs a new draw control strategy is needed which is probabilistic in nature and can handle the uncertainties associated with caving operations.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
The Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy , 2018. Vol. 118, no 7, p. 723-733
Keywords [en]
Sublevel caving, draw control, optimization, draw point monitoring
National Category
Engineering and Technology Other Civil Engineering
Research subject
Mining and Rock Engineering
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-71770DOI: 10.17159/2411-9717/2018/v118n7a6ISI: 000442393900006Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85053623244OAI: oai:DiVA.org:ltu-71770DiVA, id: diva2:1266200
Projects
SIP-STRIM
Funder
VINNOVA, 1832144
Note

Validerad;2018;Nivå 2;2018-12-07 (johcin)

Available from: 2018-11-27 Created: 2018-11-27 Last updated: 2018-12-07Bibliographically approved

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Shekhar, GurmeetGustafson, AnnaSchunnesson, Håkan

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