Mining Publication: Hydraulic Stimulation of a Surface Borehole for Gob Degasification
The Bureau of Mines evaluated the hydraulic stimulation of a gob- degasification borehole to determine if this procedure would aid in degasifying a longwall panel. The stimulated borehole did not degasify the longwall panel as expected either before or after mining of the panel started. It reduced the underground methane emission only 11 pct, considerably less than the reductions effected by two unstimulated boreholes in the same panel. Some probable reasons for the reduced methane flow from the hydraulically stimulated borehole are very low reservoir gas pressure, location of hydraulically stimulated zones within the grouted casing, a casing break caused by lateral shifting, possible vertical movement of rock strata during caving, grouting of a 4-inch pipe blocking three stimulated zones, plasticity of shales, and possible hole damage by swelling of water-sensitive minerals. The borehole was also located between two second-mined areas, which may have allowed partial degasification of the overburden and the coalbed in advance of mining. Finally, a period of 3 months is probably not long enough for the borehole to degasify the overburden before mining.