Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Department of Civil and Mining Engineering


The stability of hard rock slopes is a critical problem in surface mining and is governed by the presence of geological structures such as, joints, fractures, faults, shear zones and bedding planes along which failure may occur. The accurate prediction of the behaviour of intact rock and rock masses is of the utmost importance for stability analysis of surface mining excavations and also for safer mining operations. The engineering judgment of the relationship between geological parameters and physical and mechanical properties of intact rock and also rock mass discontinuities in conjunction with the slope stability analysis, requires knowledge of engineering geology, comprehensive laboratory testing and field investigations of the rock mass and surrounding formations.

The main objective of this research work is to study the relationship between rock slope stability problems and the mechanical properties of jointed rock mass in surface mines. In this research, theoretical, empirical and analytical techniques related to slope stability analysis were reviewed and it was found that the three-dimensional scanline method is more suitable for joint survey and data collection from the rock mass discontinuities.



Unless otherwise indicated, the views expressed in this thesis are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the University of Wollongong.