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Large-strain monitoring above a longwall coal mine with GPS and seismic measurements.

Swanson P; Andreatta V; Meertens CM; Krahanbuhl T; Kenner B
EOS Trans 2001 Sep; 82(47):864
As part of an effort to evaluate continuous GPS measurements for use in mine safety studies, a joint GPS-seismic experiment was conducted at an underground longwall coal mine near Paonia, Colorado in June, 2001. Seismic and deformation signals were measured using prototype low-cost monitoring systems as a longwall panel was excavated 150 m beneath the site. Data from both seismic and GPS instruments were logged onto low-power PC-104 Linux computers which were networked using a wireless LAN. The seismic system under development at NIOSH/SRL is based on multiple distributed 8-channel 24-bit A/D converters. The GPS system uses a serial single-frequency (L1) receiver and UNAVCO's "Jstream" Java data logging software. For this experiment, a continuously operating dual-frequency GPS receiver was installed 2.4 km away to serve as a reference site. In addition to the continuously operating sites, 10 benchmarks were surveyed daily with short "rapid-static" occupations in order to provide greater spatial sampling. Two single-frequency sites were located 35 meters apart on a relatively steep north-facing slope. As mining progressed from the east, net displacements of 1.2 meters to the north and 1.65 meters of subsidence were observed over a period of 6 days. The east component exhibited up to 0.45 meters of eastward displacement (toward the excavation) followed by reverse movement to the west. This cycle, observed approximately two days earlier at the eastern L1 site, is consistent with a change in surface strain from tension to compression as the excavation front passed underneath. As this strain "wave" propagated across the field site, surface deformation underwent a cycle of tension crack nucleation, crack opening (up to 15 cm normal displacements), subsequent crack closure, and production of low-angle-thrust compressional deformation features. Analysis of seismic results, surface deformation, and additional survey results are presented.
Mining-industry; Longwall-mining; Underground-mining; Geology; Rock-mechanics
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Spokane Research Laboratory, 315 E. Montgomery Ave., Spokane, WA 99207
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Abstract; Conference/Symposia Proceedings
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NIOSH Division
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EOS Transactions
Page last reviewed: July 9, 2021
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division