25th U.S. Symposium on Rock Mechanics, Evanston, Illinois, 1984
Authors: H. Maleki (AAI), W. Hustrulid (Colorado School of Mines), and D. Johnson (Utah Fuel Company)
Gob pressure measurements were made in a Western U.S. coal mine as part of a long-term program to evaluate cave progress and to determine the influence of geological discontinuities on caving conditions, load transfer, and resulting instabilities. Gloetzl cells were selected for the measurements due to their simple, robust construction and a history of being able to monitor pressures in a broken medium. A methodology was developed for the successful installation and protection of the cells and hydraulic lines in the gob as the face retreated. The measurements indicated a cave progress controlled by the frequency of major faults. The pressure-mining progress profile was compared to those observed in other parts of the world. It was concluded that the significant differences in profiles was caused by the thick-bedded strata, the existence of high lateral stresses, and the spacing between faults. Recommendations are given for future applications of Gloetzl cells for gob pressure measurements.