Stope Optimiser generates value

Maptek Vulcan 9 includes significant Stope Optimiser enhancements, streamlining strategic and tactical applications for short and medium term planning.

Stope Optimiser in Vulcan 9 allows users to generate a stope design delivering expected ore grade. The tools target productivity for different mining methods.

Vulcan 9 features stope output saved directly as triangulation attributes, giving immediate, right-click access to data. Colouring data by attribute produces easy to understand results. Hovering over triangulations displays the results as a datatip.

The new Prism method joins Slice and Fixed methods in an enhanced stope generation toolbox. The optimisation floats in the orebody without being constrained by levels.

In Vulcan 9 Stope Optimiser will take level drift centre lines at any orientation in an orebody. Strings that match drainage or access routes can also be used as bounding factors.

Flexible options

Vulcan 9 introduces greater flexibility in stope layout, which is ideal for stratigraphic and horizontal deposits. Strips and blocks can be used to guide mining; variable strip and block sizes and orientation are allowed. Sub-stoping allows primary and secondary drive and pillar shapes to be defined.

Stope Optimiser accounts for geological structures that can cause overbreak into a stope. An annealed stope shape within a nominated distance of the modelled wireframe snaps to the surface.

Stope Optimiser will evaluate whether an expanded stope should be accepted in preference to a minimum offset from the structural surface voids.

Users can choose 3 reserve evaluation modes. Fast (model and stope shape framework are orthogonal) and slow (model and stope shape framework have a rotation offset) typically report more metal/value. They are 5-10 times faster than precise mode (traditional mine planning method) but are less sensitive to sub-cell approximation.

Processing & reporting

New rules allow stopes to be split on a grid, centred, or at a distance from hanging wall or footwall. Stopes can be smoothed to eliminate gaps and sub-stope corners can be adjusted. Stope shapes can be re-labelled based on grid or strike length.

Expanded design options allow flexing of spacing, location and offset, over multiple zones. Sorted results guide designs; all or the best design can be output.

Stope Optimiser provides a dynamic 3D approach to a 3D problem.
It saves time on manual stope generation, improving confidence in results.

Filters can be applied to the processing of the stope shapes, allowing block model variables to constrain the shapes. Naming options include coordinates, levels and reference lines. Reporting includes separate options for undiluted, diluted and dilution volumes.

Vulcan 9 Stope Optimiser provides underground designs that take into account all realisations, generating the best stope at the selected confidence.

Thanks to Chris Alford, Alford Mining Systems
Extract from paper presented by Robert Slade at Maptek Users Conference, Brisbane, 2013