Total exploitation of an ornamental granite quarry
Keywords:ornamental rock, granite, ornamental granite, aggregate, quarry, total exploitation
In this paper we propose a methodology to estimate the recovery percentage for each of the products which can be obtained from the exploitation of an ornamental granite quarry: block, semiblock, masonry-transverse stone, and the smaller materials that can be used to obtain construction aggregates. This methodology ensures that quarry exploitation is exhaustive, thereby minimising the production of spoils and the consequent negative impact on the environment. The analysis is based on a detailed and exhaustive compilation of discontinuity data from the research fronts, which are then interpreted statistically and projected over the three weakness planes that are a particular feature of ornamental granite deposits. Using this information, and bearing in mind the minimum commercially viable sizes for each kind of granite, the corresponding recovery rates are calculated for each material in each plane. The results are then integrated using spatial techniques, and the result is an evaluation of quarry contents with a view to total exploitation. This methodology was applied to a quarry in the opening phase in order to carry out an a priori assessment of the economic feasibility of the quarry.
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