Document Type

Conference Paper

Publication Date


Publication Details

Itmam Abedin and Ting Ren, Influence of water saturation duration on the mechanical properties and toughness index of Australian coal, Proceedings of the 2024 Resource Operators Conference, University of Wollongong - Mining Engineering, February 2024, 258-266.


The coal seam water infusion technique is recognized as a successful method for mitigating the occurrence of rock and coal bursts. As coal burst is a process of energy accumulation and release, the mechanical properties of coal, such as Uniaxial Compressive Strength (UCS), toughness, and elastic modulus, play a significant role. The water infusion method is already an industry-practiced technique to control the accumulation and release of energy by reducing compressive strength and elasticity. However, its effectiveness is potentially specific to each case and subject to the properties of the rock and coal. Several parameters influence the efficacy of this method, including infusion time, lithology, and coal properties. In this study, four groups of specimens were selected for the water saturation test and the Uniaxial Compressive Strength (UCS) and the coal toughness index method were employed to assess coal strength. Specimens underwent water saturation for 0, 5, 10, and 15 days. Results indicate decreasing compressive strength, toughness index, and elastic modulus with prolonged saturation. Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) analysis was conducted to observe the micro-cracking behaviour of the coal surface at various saturation times, revealing an increased development of internal micro-cracks as the saturation time extends. This comprehensive study offers compelling evidence that water saturation time significantly influences both the strength and micro-cracking behaviour of coal.