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Project Overview

Project Number
M0415
Total Grant Value
$180,599
MRIWA Contribution
$45,599
Project Theme
Processing Technology
Project Period
2011 - 2014

The Challenge

The mining process results in the excavation of un-wanted waste rock which is typically stored on-site in large piles that persist long after a mine ceases to operate.

These waste dumps have no intrinsic value, but the engineering and infrastructure required to safely contain them is costly, affecting the financial viability and profitability of mining operations.

Key Findings

Three mixed integer programming (MIP) models have been developed, validated and demonstrated for use in a large-scale gold mining operation.

The main model minimises overall haulage distance and material re-handling in waste rock dump production (OP).

The other two models minimise deviation of available truck hours vs. scheduled truck hour (TB) and combine the objectives of the OP and TB models.

Benefit to WA

The programming methodology and models developed through this research can be used to optimise waste rock dumping schedules to minimise haulage cost and realise maximum environmental benefit.

Implementation of this technology in WA mines could help improve the operating profitability of the sector while also aiding compliance with environmental risk targets set by the regulator.


Keywords: waste rock, dump design, mixed integer programming

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Page was last reviewed 17 June 2021

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