Document Type

Conference Paper

Publication Date


Publication Details

M. Colwell, and R. Frith, Analysis and design of faceroad roof support (ADFRS), 13th Coal Operators' Conference, University of Wollongong, The Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy & Mine Managers Association of Australia, 2013, 74-85.


This paper summarises the results of a research project whose goal was to provide the Australian coal industry with a longwall installation roadway design methodology that could be utilised by suitably qualified colliery staff. This goal has been achieved and the design methodology (and software package) is referred to as Analysis and Design of Faceroad Roof Support (ADFRS). The intended benefits to underground operations, in the provision of this information and resource, are a safer and more productive workplace. ADFRS now fills the gaping void that existed in the Australian underground coal industry with respect to the geotechnical design and management of longwall installation roadways. In addition to the standard two-pass widening, ADFRS deals with all other aspects of installation roadway design, including faceroad intersections, stables and adjacent maingate and tailgate intersections. ADFRS is based on a sound mechanistic understanding of the roadway development and widening process and the design equations (with strong to very strong correlations) are fully consistent with measured roof behaviour. To the best of the authors’ knowledge ADFRS is the first systematic faceroad design technique to be developed for any country’s underground coal industry.