2013 47th US Rock Mechanics / Geomechanics Symposium, June 23–26, San Francisco, California
Authors: J. P. Friedman and S. Mohanty (AAI), and J. H. Rahe, (Rahe Engineering, Inc.)

This paper discusses the development of an adit-plug system for sealing historical mine adits located within the Tailings Storage Facility basin at the El Boleo project in Santa Rosalía, Mexico. The historical workings could possibly intersect proposed new mine workings that may allow future tailings to migrate from the TSF into the new mine workings, and eventually to areas outside the TSF creating potential instability and safety concerns. In order to seal the historical workings within the TSF limits, a plug system was designed to incorporate multiple barriers to minimize tailings migration and water inflow into the adits. The plug system includes a structural reinforced concrete plug, shotcrete liners around the plug, and a compacted, structural-fill buttress placed above and in front of the plug. Analytical methods, including an empirical summation-of-forces approach and three-dimensional numerical modeling, have been used to evaluate the global stability of the adit-plug system. Results of the analyses are presented.
Downloadable PDF: Design and Analysis of Mine Adit-Plugs within a Tailings Storage Basin – Friedman JP

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