Document Type

Conference Paper

Publication Date


Publication Details

B. Wiklund, M. S Kizil and I. Canbulat, Development of A Cavity Prediction Model for Longwall Mining, 11th Underground Coal Operators' Conference, University of Wollongong & the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, 2011, 48-59.


Advancements in technology over the past decade, in data collection and computer modelling systems, have created opportunities to develop and improve the current methods of predicting roof stability issues in longwall mining operations. The ability to accurately predict roof instabilities and cavity developments has great benefits for the coal industry. Early prediction will allow for appropriate actions to be taken to avoid such events, removing the potential for harm to personnel and loss of production. A case study of Moranbah North Mine, investigating the causes of roof stability issues, concentrating on the development of roof cavities in the longwall face is presented. Results from an investigation of the effect of particular geological factors on the occurrence of such instability events are recorded. From the investigation a stability index was developed from geological data collected from boreholes on site. A hazard map was developed, using the index, to indicate areas in the roof where failures and cavities were most likely to occur. Although some correlations were found between the index and geological factors, the results were not entirely satisfactory as some important factors had not been included in the prediction model which is still being improved.