Title page for ETD etd-0898-121736

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Basu, Kohinoor
Author's Email Address kbasu@vt.edu
URN etd-0898-121736
Title Feasibility of an Integrated Thin Seam Coal Mining and Waste Disposal System
Degree Master of Science
Department Mining and Minerals Engineering
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Topuz, Ertugrul Committee Chair
Karfakis, Mario G. Committee Member
McPherson, Malcolm J. Committee Member
  • Thin seam
  • Stalls
  • Auger
  • Self advancing miner
  • Backfilling
Date of Defense 1997-12-15
Availability unrestricted
The depletion of more attractive thicker and easily accessible

coal seams in the central Appalachia will direct attention

towards the extraction of coal seams thinner than 28 in.

This thesis investigates the feasibility of an integrated

mining and backfilling system applicable to thin seams. Two

conceptual mining systems, namely Auger mining and Self

Advancing Miner, have been proposed for this purpose. Both

these systems are designed to remotely mine coal from the

seams. Several attempts were made in the past to mine coal

in a similar fashion but were not very successful due to

several problems inherent to thin seams. The lack of

effective steering techniques, accurate coal/rock interface

and pillar thickness detection techniques were the main

shortcomings of the systems. These problems were addressed

in the proposed conceptual mining systems. Several coal/rock

interface and rib thickness detection techniques currently

available in the market or in the prototype stage have been

discussed. Recent developments in coal/rock interface

detection and direction sensing techniques have good

potential in alleviating the previously encountered problems.

Sensitivity analyses have been performed to assess the of

effect critical mining parameters on the production potential

of these systems. The self advancing miner has been found

to be more promising than auger mining. Conceptual panels

and face layouts for both systems have been included. Two

types of filling methods namely pneumatic and hydraulic are

considered applicable under thin seam conditions. A backfilling

technique using rubber hoses for fill placement can be

applied with both methods. Sensitivity analysis have been

performed to establish the relationship between face

operation cost, filling cost per ton and development cost

per foot. Resulting analyses indicate that panel cost per

short ton of coal is more sensitive to filling cost than on

development cost.

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