Systematic near-field vibration monitoring of stope blasts was carried out in a large, deep underground mine. A total of 31 production blasts were studied in order to investigate the effectiveness of existing blast designs. This involved the vertical retreat mining method, which requires drilling a raise bore or blasting a slot raise (typically 1.22 m in diameter) using large diameter boreholes (165 mm). The diagnostic technique employed multistation near-field monitoring of blasts with high-g (100 g) and high-frequency (>10 kHz) triaxial accelerometers. The amplitude of the vibrations is correlated with the strain energy transmitted from each explosive deck. The results showed that more than 30 per cent of the explosive decks contributed little energy to the rock breakage process in these blasts, and an equal number contributed only inadequately. These findings are indicative of serious blast malfunctions. The problems can be traced to inadequate deck blast design and possibly to drill hole deviation. The various causes for such malfunctions are discussed and remedial measures suggested.
Mohanty, B and Zwaan, D, 2015. Assessment of underground production blast designs and blasting performance, in Proceedings 11th International Symposium on Rock Fragmentation by Blasting, pp 607–616 (The Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy: Melbourne).