Rock anchor support systems at Smoky River Coal Limited, Grande Cache, Alberta

CIM Bulletin, Vol. 88, No. 992, 1995

R.F. Dawson, Geotechnical Group, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Alberta A.S. Bagnall, Smoky River Coal Limited, and K. Barren, University of Alberta

At Smoky River Coal Limited (SRCL), economic occurrences of structurally thickened coal deposits form attractive surface mining targets. These steeply dipping, structurally complex deposits require that special attention be given to pit wall design and operational practices. Where anchor support is feasible, there is potential for reducing footwall waste requirements and/or increasing coal recovery. SRCL has used rock anchors to support footwall slopes since 1985. This paper outlines design considerations and performance of rock anchor support systems at SRCL. Three case histories are included that illustrate the design process for supporting steeply dipping footwall slopes using rock anchors.