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01.02.2017 | Original Article | Ausgabe 4/2017

Environmental Earth Sciences 4/2017

Environmentally sustainable mining through proper selection of explosives in blasting operation

Zeitschrift:
Environmental Earth Sciences > Ausgabe 4/2017
Autoren:
Amir Khademian, Raheb Bagherpour

Abstract

Blasting is considered as the first step in the mineral supply chain in most of the mines. In addition to rock fragmentation, blasting has a significant role in exerting inner damage and reducing the strength of rock fragments. The strength reduction facilitates many of downstream mining processes including comminution and reduces energy consumption in crushing and grinding stages, which is an important achievement in today’s environment. This study aims to investigate the effect of changing the explosive type on post-blast strength of rock fragments and their microcracks content and energy consumption in subsequent processes. For this purpose, several experimental blastings have been carried out using three types of explosives, ANFO, Emulite and pentolite, while the applied energy and other parameter were kept constant. Then, the P-wave velocity and point load index of rock fragments have been measured for all blasts. In the next step, microcrack density of rock fragments was measured by image processing of fluorescent microscopic images and also the quantity of all kinds of microcracks was examined by some light microscopy techniques. The results showed that rock fragments strength is totally influenced by explosive types, so that blasting with pentolite causes a 16.5% reduction in rock strength. Besides, it was found that the rock fragments strength is highly correlated with explosives detonation velocity (VOD). Furthermore, microcracks studies results showed that different types of explosive have dissimilar influences on rock microcrack network, so that the use of pentolite instead of ANFO increases the microcracks density more than 300%.

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