The development of specialised modular protective structure on continuous miners against coal burst hazards

Publication Name

International Journal of Protective Structures


As mining progresses into deep ore deposits in Australia, geo-hazards such as coal burst and outbursts are becoming a major concern for mine workers. The occurrence of geo-hazards involved the ejection of coal lumps and sometimes large volumes of hazardous gases such as methane and carbon dioxide. Whilst it is extremely important to de-stress and de-gas the seam and adjacent strata before roadway development and install competent support systems such as steel mesh and bolt, the last line of protection will be the installation of a protective canopy on the Continuous Miner (CM), which is typically used for roadway developments, to shield mine workers from these deadly dynamic impacts of coal and rock resulting from a burst or outburst. This paper aims to introduce the design, manufacture and testing of an innovative modular protective structure on the CM in underground coal mines. The developed protective system can be easily assembled in the underground mining environment and provide a high level of protection against flying debris hazards in the event of a coal burst. The extensive experimental program and numerical simulations have confirmed the high performance of the protective system against high-speed impact loading by single and multiple coal rocks and projectiles.

Open Access Status

This publication is not available as open access

Funding Number


Funding Sponsor

Australian Research Council



Link to publisher version (DOI)