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In situ stress measurements at the Stillwater Mine, Nye, Montana.

Johnson J; Brady T; MacLaughlin M; Langston R; Kirsten H
Soil and Rock America 2003. 12th Panamerican Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering and the 39th U.S. Rock Mechanics Symposium, Vol. 1. Cambridge, MA: Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2003 Jun; 1:337-344
The magnitudes and directions of in situ stresses affect the stability of mine openings, as well as the type and amount of ground support needed to maintain a safe working environment for miners. Using hollow inclusion stress cells, researchers from the Spokane Research Laboratory of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health obtained two in situ stress measurements from the face of two footwall lateral drifts at the Stillwater Mine near Nye, MT. The first measurement, obtained in 1997, was collected under the valley beneath the Stillwater River. The second measurement was obtained in 2002 under the main frontal massif of the Beartooth Mountains in the western sector of the mine. Although few data are available, the major principal stress under the valley has been recorded as nearly horizontal in a north-south direction perpendicular to the ore body, while beneath the mountains, stress runs east-west parallel to the ore body. This paper documents the measurements, describes the in situ stress state, and discusses a finite-difference analysis of the biaxial test.
Stress; Mining-industry; Occupational-hazards; Hazards; Mine-disasters; Ground-stability; Ground-control
Publication Date
Document Type
Conference/Symposia Proceedings
Culligan PJ; Einstein HH; Whittle AJ
Fiscal Year
NIOSH Division
Priority Area
Research Tools and Approaches: Risk Assessment Methods
Source Name
Soil and Rock America 2003. 39th U.S. Rock Mechanics Symposium, June 22-26, 2003, Cambridge, Massechusetts,
Page last reviewed: January 20, 2023
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division