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MiningandBlasting
WeblogofParthaDasSharmaForDiscussingVarious
AspectsofMining,ExplosivesandBlasting.

blastpattern
OCTOBER12,2012BYPARTHADASSHARMA

ROCKBREAKAGEANDBLASTDESIGN
CONSIDERATIONSINOPENPIT
ROCKBREAKAGEANDBLASTDESIGNCONSIDERATIONSINOPENPIT
PARTHADASSHARMA
1.ExplosivesEnergyReleaseandRockBreakage:Mechanismofrockbreakagewhilereleaseof
Explosivesenergyupondetonationandotherrelevantpointsarediscussedbelow:
Whenanexplosivechargeisdetonated,chemicalreactionoccurwhich,veryrapidlychangesthe
solidorliquidexplosivemassintoahotgases.
Thisreactionstartsatthepointofinitiationwheredetonatorisconnectedwithexplosivesand
formsaconvexlikeshockwave(Compressivewave)onitsleadingedgethatactsontheborehole
wallandpropagatesthroughtheexplosivecolumn.
Aheadofthereactionzoneareundetonatedexplosiveproductsandbehindthereactionzoneare
expandinghotgasses.
UnderstandingtheoryofdetonationofexplosivesTheselfsustainedshockwaveproducedbya
chemicalreactionwasdescribedbyChapmanandJouquetasaspace.Thisspaceofnegligible
thicknessisboundedbytwoinniteplanesononesideofthewaveistheunreactedexplosive
andontheother,theexplodedgasesasshownintheFig.1.Therearethreedistinctzones:a)The
undisturbedmediumaheadoftheshockwave,b)ArapidpressureatYleadingtoazoneinwhich
chemicalreactionisgeneratedbytheshock,andcompleteatX,c)Asteadystatewavewhere
pressureandtemperaturearemaintained.Thisconditionofstabilityconditionforstabilityexistsat
hypotheticalX,whichiscommonlyreferredtotheChapmanJouquet(CJ)plane.Betweenthetwo
planesXandYthereisconservationofmass,momentumandenergy.

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(h ps://miningandblasting.les.wordpress.com/2012/10/g1.jpg)
Fig1
Velocityofdetonation(VOD)ofexplosiveisfunctionofHeatofreactionofanexplosive,density
2
andconnement.Thedetonationpressure(unitinN/m )thatexistsattheCJplaneisfunctionof
VODofexplosives.Thedetonationofexplosivesincylindricalcolumnsandinunconned
conditionsleadstolateralexpansionbetweentheshockandCJplanesresultinginashorter
reactionzoneandlossofenergy.Thus,itiscommontoencounteramuchlowerVODin
unconnedsituationsthaninconnedones.
RockbreakagebyDetonationandInteractionofexplosiveenergywithrockTherearethree
sourcesofgenerationoffragmentsinmines:(a)Fragmentsformedbynewfracturescreatedby
detonatingexplosivecharge,(b)Insitublocksthathavesimplybeenliberatedfromtherockmass
withoutfurtherbreakageand(c)Fragmentsformedbyextendingtheinsitufracturesin
combinationwithnewfractures.
Rockfragmentationbyblastingisachievedbydynamicloadingintroducedintotherockmass.The
explosiveloadingofrockcanbeseparatedintotwophases,theshockwaveandgaspressure
phase(Fig.2).

(h ps://miningandblasting.les.wordpress.com/2012/10/g2.jpg)
Fig.2
Rapidthedetonationprocess,thequickertheenergyreleasefromexplosivesmass,intheformof
ashockwavefollowedbygaspressure,isappliedtotheboreholewall.Inotherwords,fasterthe
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detonationvelocityoftheexplosive,quickeristheenergyappliedtotheboreholewall,andfora2/30

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detonationvelocityoftheexplosive,quickeristheenergyappliedtotheboreholewall,andfora
shortertimeperiod.
Conversely,withaslowerdetonationvelocity,theenergyisappliedmoreslowly,andforalonger
timeperiod.Thedegreeofcouplingbetweentheexplosiveandtheboreholewallwillhavean
eectonhowecientlytheshockwaveistransmi edintotherock.
Pumpedorpouredexplosiveswillresultinbe ertransmissionofenergythancartridgeproducts
withanannularspacebetweenthecartridgeandtheboreholewall.
Again,thepressurethatbuildsupintheboreholedependsnotonlyuponexplosivecomposition,
butalsothephysicalcharacteristicsoftherock.
Strongcompetentrockwillresultinhigherpressuresthanweak,compressiblerock.
Whentheshockwavereachestheboreholewallthefragmentationprocessbegins.
Thisshockwave,whichstartsoutatthevelocityoftheexplosive,decreasesquiterapidlyonceit
enterstherockandinashortdistanceisreducedtothesonicvelocityofthatparticularrock.
Mostrockhasacompressivestrengththatisapproximately7timeshigherthanitstensile
strength,i.e.ittakes7timestheamountofenergytocrushitasitdoestopullitapart.
Whentheshockwaverstencounterstheboreholewall,thecompressivestrengthoftherockis
exceededbytheshockwaveandthezoneimmediatelysurroundingtheboreholeiscrushed.

(h ps://miningandblasting.les.wordpress.com/2012/10/g3.jpg)
Fig.3
Astheshockwaveradiatesoutwardatdecliningvelocity,itsintensitydropsbelowthe
compressivestrengthoftherockandcompressivecrushingstops.
Theradiusofthiscrushedzonevarieswiththecompressivestrengthoftherockandtheintensity
oftheshockwave,butseldomexceedstwicethediameteroftheborehole.
However,beyondthiscrushedzone,theintensityisstillabovethetensilestrengthoftherockand
itcausesthesurroundingrockmasstoexpandandfailintension,resultinginradialcracking.
Thehotgasfollowingtheshockwaveexpandsintotheradialcracksandextendsthemfurther.
Thisisthezonewheremostofthefragmentationprocesstakesplace.
However,ifthecompressiveshockwavepulseradiatingoutwardfromtheholeencountersa
fractureplane,discontinuityorafreeface,itisreectedandbecomesatensionwavewith
approximatelythesameenergyasthecompressivewave.
Thistensionwavecanpossiblyspalloaslabofrock(seegure3).
Thisreectionrockbreakagemechanismdependsheavilyuponthreeimportantrequirements:
(a)thecompressivewave(andresultingreectedtensilewave)muststillbeofsucientintensityto
exceedthetensilestrengthoftherock,

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(b)thematerialonoppositesidesofthefractureplaneordiscontinuitymusthavedierent

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(b)thematerialonoppositesidesofthefractureplaneordiscontinuitymusthavedierent
impedances,
(c)thecompressivepulsemustarriveparallelto,ornearlyparallelto,thefractureplaneorfreeface.
Ifcarriedtoextreme,whenthisreectivebreakageorspallingprocessoccursatafreeface,it
canresultinviolentthrow,asituationthatisnotdesirable.
Thiscanbeovercomebydesigningblastswithburdenandspacingdimensionsthatarewithin
reasonablelimits.
Oncethecompressiveandtensilestressescausedbytheshockwavedropbelowthetensile
strengthoftherock,theshockwavebecomesaseismicwavethatradiatesoutwardatthesonic
velocityofthematerialthroughwhichitpasses.
Atthispoint,itisnolongercontributingtothefragmentationprocess.
Importantpointslearnedthroughexperience:
Withintherangeofconventionalblasting,thephysicalcharacteristicsoftherockaremore
importantthanthecharacteristicsoftheexplosivesusedandcanhaveagreaterimpactonthe
successorfailureofablast.
Finalsizefragmentationisusuallyobtainedbeforeanyappreciablerockmovementorthrow
occurs.
Rockcanabsorbonlysomuchenergyandonlyatacertainmaximumratebeforeitwillfail.
Thenaldisplacementofthebulkoftherockismoreafunctionofthedurationofthegas
pressurethanitsintensity.
2.ContemplationofBlastDesign:Blastdesigningisnotascience,butknowledge,experience,
studyingandanalyzingpastpracticesinrelationtorockstrata&geologyetc.,makesblasterto
achieveperfection.Thus,forablaster,valuabletoolistheleofblastreportsthathebuildsashe
gainsexperience.Notonlydotheseprovideevidenceofthequalityofhiswork,buttheyalso
provideawealthofinformationuponwhichhecandrawasfutureblastingsituationsdevelop.

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BlastDesign:Thisismeanttobeatoolboxforblastdesigninconventionalrockquarryingand
openpitmines.Thiswriteupisnotmeanttogivestraightanswerstotheblastdesignparameters,
aseverysinglequarryisunique.However,thegeneralrelationsbetweenthemainblasting
parameters;geology,blastabilityandexplosives,willbeapplicable,andtheestimationmodelisa
verygoodtoolforplanningtestblastsandexperiments,andalsoforadjustmentsoftheblast
designwhenthisisnecessaryforoptimisingthequarryproductionlineastimeprogresses.High
accuracythroughoutthewholeblastingprocessisfundamentalforachievingaproperblastresult.
Variouspointsassuccesscriteriaareshownbelow:
Planning
Surveyingandmarkingofholes
Adjustmentofdrillingpa ern
Adjustmentofspeciccharge
Delaytimesandinitiationpa ern
Accuratedrilling
Properlyselectedstemmingmaterial
Control,documentationandsupervisionofthework
Whenoptimisingquarryoperations,itisoftendiculttoaccomplishseveralelementsof
improvementsimultaneously.Itisveryimportanttotryoneeortatatimeandbesureofthe
conclusionsfromeachsinglespecicadjustmentbeforeintroducingnewadjustments.Elementsof
improvementmustbeeectuatedaccordingtoamutualsuperiorstrategy.
Itisimportanttocontinuouslykeepuptheprocessofimprovementandalwaysbeinterestedin
increasingtheworkersknowledgeandskillsabouttheprocess.Thismustbedonetogain
competenceandeectuatethepotentiallongtermoutlook.Itisimportanttodocumenttheresults
toavoidlossofinformationifkeypersonnelquit.Thesumofimprovementswillmostoftenbe
visualisedintheformofhighereciencyandlowerrepairandmaintenancecosts.Understanding
themeaningoftheblastingprocessasacontinuouscycle,howthevariousparameterscanbe
changedtooptimizewantedblastingresultandhowtoevaluatetheresult,isessentialwhen
optimizingthequarryprocesses.
Beforeablastercandesignablast,thereareanumberofsitespecicthingsthathemusttakeinto
considerationthatwillhaveanimpactonhisdesign.Blastershoulddeneatleastthefollowing
itemsbeforeheundertakestodesignablast:
A.Fragmentationdesired:
Sizeofdigging/handlingequipment.
Sizeofcrushingequipment(ifrequired).
Riprapordimensionalstonedesired?
Sizelimitationsinprojectspecications?
B.Rockquality/character:
Hard?Soft?Porous?
Holeswet?Dry?Variable?
Jointsandslipplanes?Beddingplanes?
Voidsorotherincompetentzones?
C.Sitelimitations:
Structuresorotherpropertytoprotect?Atwhatdistance?
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Utilitiesnearby(undergroundoraboveground)?

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Utilitiesnearby(undergroundoraboveground)?
Vibrationandairblastconsiderations?
Integrityofrocktobeleftinplace.
Onsiteorositevehicletrac?
Anyotherprojectspecicationlimitations?
D.Safetylimitations:
Adequateprotectionfromyrock?
Weatherislightningapossibility?
Anynearbyelectricalhazards?
AnynearbyRF(radio)hazards?
Impacthazardsfromrockfall?
Ventilationneeded?
Traccontrolrequired?
Theimpactofpotentialmisres.(Howisolatedisthesite?
Isdoubleprimingadvisabletominimizemisres?)
E.Equipment/materialslimitations:
Drillingequipmentsize,condition.
Steellengthsavailabledepthofblast.
Explosives(includingdetonators)Type,size,quantityavailable.
Adequatemagazinesitenearby?
Blastingmatsavailableifneeded?
Otherblastingaccessories?
Apart,investigatetheareathoroughlyandidentifythoseitemsthatwillaectyourblastorbe
aectedbyyourblastanddesignaccordingly.
3.BlastdesignCalculationsandempiricalformulas:Indesigningablast,followingprinciples
shouldbekeptinmind:
Explosiveforcefunctionsbestwhentherockbeingblastedhasafreefacetowardwhichitcan
break.
Theremustbeanadequatevoidoropenspaceintowhichthebrokenrockcanmoveandexpand
(orswell).
Toproperlyutilizetheenergyavailable,theexplosiveproductshouldbewellconnedwithinthe
rock.
Ifablastislackinginoneormoreoftheseaboveprinciples,theresultswillgenerallybelessthan
desired.
EmpiricalformulasdevelopedbyAshwithfewmodicationsarediscussedhere.Followingsymbols
anddenitionsaregiveninrelationtotheequationsdiscussed:
D=Diameter(ininches)oftheexplosiveintheborehole.
B=Burden,thedistance(infeet)fromachargetothenearestfreefaceinthedirectionthat
displacementwillmostlikelyoccur.
S=Spacing,thedistance(infeet)betweentwoholes,measuredperpendiculartothe
correspondingburden.
L=Holelengthordepth(infeet).
J=Subdrillinglength(infeet),thedepththattheholeextendsbelowtheanticipatedgradeor
oor.
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T=Stemmingheightorcollardistance(infeet).Thetopportionoftheholecontaininginert

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T=Stemmingheightorcollardistance(infeet).Thetopportionoftheholecontaininginert
materialsintendedtopreventprematureejectionofgasses.
H=Benchorfaceheight(infeet).
Note:Intheserelationships,theBurdenandSpacingdimensionsaretheshotburdenandspacing,
whichmayormaynotbethedrilledburdenandspacing.Changesintheinitiationtimingscheme
willdeterminethedierence(seeFig.4).Moreover,itisimportanttounderstandthattheblast
parameterslistedareinterrelatedandthatchangingoneparameterwillhaveanimpactonothers.

(h ps://miningandblasting.les.wordpress.com/2012/10/g4.jpg)
Fig4
Discussion:
Theburdenthatcanbesuccessfullyblasteddependslargelyuponthestrengthoftherockandthe
amountofenergythatisplacedbehindit.
Theamountofenergythatcanbeloadedisdependentupontheholevolume,ordiameter;hence,
theholediameterandrockstrengthlargelydeterminetheburdendistance.
Often,theholediameterhasalreadybeenestablishedbythedrillingequipmentonhand.
Ifithasnt,theoptimumholediametershouldbeselectedbaseduponconsiderationssuchas
fragmentationdesired,benchheight,rockquality,etc.
Inselectingholesize,smallerholediametersandtighterpa ernswillresultinbe er
fragmentation,butwillincreasedrilling,loadingandproductcosts.
Tallerbenchheightswillallowlargerholediametersandlargerburdensandlessdrillingand
blastingcost.
Also,ifthematerialtobeblastedisblocky,itisquitelikelythatsomeblocksmayemergeintact
unlesssmallerholediametersandtighterpa ernsplaceexplosiveswithinthem.
Oncetheholediameterhasbeenestablished,burdendistancecanbeselected.
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Thefollowingratioscanbeusedasrstapproximationsindesigningblasts.Bearinmindthatthe 7/30

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Thefollowingratioscanbeusedasrstapproximationsindesigningblasts.Bearinmindthatthe
ratioswillusuallyhavetobeadjustedasonelearnsmoreabouthowtheparticularrockreactswhen
blasted:
Burden=roughly24to36timestheexplosivediameter.
1.UsingAN/FOataspecicgravityof0.82g/cc:
i)lightrock(2.2g/ccdensity)=28xdiameter
ii)mediumrock(2.7g/ccdensity)=25xdiameter
iii)denserock(3.2g/ccdensity)=23xdiameter
1.UsingSlurries,Emulsions,etcataspecicgravityof1.20g/cc:
i)lightrock(2.2g/ccdensity)=33xdiameter
ii)mediumrock(2.7g/ccdensity)=30xdiameter
iii)denserock(3.2g/ccdensity)=27xdiameter
Spacing=1.0to2.0timestheburden
i)holesshotinstantlybyrow=1.82.0xburden
ii)largediameterholesshotsequentially=1.21.5xburden
iii)smalldiameterholesshotsequentially=1.51.8xburden
Benchheight=1.5to4timestheburden,orpossiblyhigher
Benchheightisusuallylimitedonthelowendbytheheightofthestemmingcolumnrequiredandits
limitingeectontheamountofexplosivethatcanbeloaded,andlimitedonthehighendbythe
heightofthediggingequipment(forsafetyreasons).
Subdrilling=0.1to0.5timestheburden
i)atbeddingplaneattoe=0.00.1xburden
ii)relativelyeasytoe=0.10.2xburden
III)mediumtoe=0.20.4xburden
IV)diculttoe(verticalbedding)=0.5xburden
Stemmingcolumnlength=0.5to1.3timestheburden
I)Increasedmultiplierifdrillcu ingsareusedforstemmingand/orholesarewet.
II)Decreasedmultiplierifstonechipsareusedforstemmingand/orholesaredry.
III)Forverycautiousblasting(nothroworyrockallowed):
IV)Stemming=upto36timestheholediameter,possiblymore
V)Stemminglengthbetweendeckstoberedonseparatedelays:
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VI)Decklength:dryhole=6timestheholediameter

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VI)Decklength:dryhole=6timestheholediameter
VII)Decklength:wethole=12timestheholediameter
Note:
Acertainamountofcautionmustbeexercisedwhenselectingvalues.Forexample,toosmalla
burdenwouldresultinexcessiveforwardthrow,whiletoolargeaburdenwouldprobablyyield
inadequatefragmentationwithpossibleexcessiveupwardthrow.Inasimilarmanner,toowidea
spacingwouldresultinlossofinteractionbetweendetonatingcharges,whiletooli lespacingcould
causepartialcancellationofexplosiveforcesandcouldcontributetoexcessivevibration.
Thetypeofstemmingmaterialplaysanimportantpartinconningthegasgeneratedfrom
explosivesdetonatinginthehole.Angularcrushedstonechipsarepreferred.Roundpebbles,dirt
andwaterarenotandshouldbeavoided.Mostofthetime,drillcu ingsareused,buttheycanbe
marginal.
Ifsubdrillingisnotsucientlydeep,theresultwillbehighbo om.Excessivesubdrilling,however,
iswastefulofdrillinglaborandexplosiveenergy.
Otherfactorssuchasinitiationtiminganddirectionhaveanimpactandwillhavetobeconsidered.
POWDERFACTOR.Inconstructionblasting,powderfactor(PF)isexpressedasquantity(unitmass)
ofexplosiveperunitvolumeofmaterialblasted.Formining,itisusuallyexpressedasquantityof
explosivepertonofmaterial(orsometimestonsofmaterialperunitmassofexplosive).

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(h ps://miningandblasting.les.wordpress.com/2012/10/g5.jpg)
Fig5
DELAYTIMING:Veryseldomisaconventionalblastsetowhereallchargesaredetonatedinthe
sameinstant.Usuallythereisaspecictimeintervalanddirectionordirectionsfordelayingthe
charges.
Fortunnels,driftsandshaftswherethereisnofreefaceparalleltotheaxisoftheholes,longerdelay
periodsareutilized.Theseareintendedtoprovidesucienttimedelayforthefracturedrockfrom
theinitialholestobeexpelledsothatthereisroomfortherockblastedbythefollowingholesto
expand.
Inconstructionandinsurfacemining,milliseconddelaysareusedbetweenchargesinablast.There
areseveralbasicreasonsfordoingso:
Toassurethatoneormorefreefacesprogressthroughtheshot,providingaconsistentburden.
Toenhancefragmentationbetweenadjacentholes.
Toreducegroundvibrationandairblast.
Toprovideameansofdirectingtheheaveordisplacementoftheblastedmaterial.

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(h ps://miningandblasting.les.wordpress.com/2012/10/f91.jpg)

V,V1,V2Patterns:ThesePatternarefarsuperior,torowdelays.
Theseresultinsuperiorfragmentationduetoreducehole
burdensandincreasedspacingatthetimeofholeinitiationand
alsoduetoinflightcollisionofbrokenrockduringitsmovement.
Thedelayedactionofholesinthebackrowreducesoverbreak
ensuringincreasedwallstability.

Thebestavailablepatternisonewheretheholesaredrilled
(staggered)onaequilateraltrianglepattern.Thisinadrilled
spacingtoburdenratioofapproximately1.16.Ithasbeen
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observedthataneffectivespacing(Se)toBurden(Be),ratioof
about3.5isachievedwithholesdrilledonanequilateraltriangle
gridandfiredusingaV1initiationsequence.
Drilling(staggered)equilateraltriangularpa ernrequiremoreoperatorskillandsupervisionas
comparedtoinlinepa erns.Clearmarkingoftheholepositionsinadvancebyaresponsible
personwouldhelpthedrillersimmensely.Fig.givesvariousdelaypa ernsdiscussedabove.

(https://miningandblasting.files.wordpress.com/2012/10/fig6.jpg)

Fig.6
Theoretically,itispossibletonetunethetimingofablasttoachieveidealresults.Although
rathersophisticatedelectronicdetonatorsareavailable,standardmillisecond(ms)delaysystemscan
beobtainedthatwillgenerallyprovideenoughexibilityandasucientrangeoftimingformost
applications.Theremaybespecicapplicationswhereextremelyaccuratedelaydetonatorsare
necessary,butformostconventionalblastingsituations,thestandardunitsaresatisfactory.Inmany
cases,asmallamountofsca erinthetimescanactuallybebenecialinreducingvibration,aslong
astheaccuracyisadequatetopreventoverlap,ornearoverlap,ofdetonationtimes.
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1.A.Thedelaytimebetweenindividualholesinarow:

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1.A.Thedelaytimebetweenindividualholesinarow:
i)Thedelaytimebetweenholesinarowshouldbebetween1msand5msperfootofburden,
with3msyieldinggoodresultsinmostinstances.
ii)Whereairblastisaproblemorpotentialproblem,thedelaytimebetweenholesinarowshould
beatleast2msperfootofspacing.
iii)Thiswillresultinablastprogressionalongthefaceoralongarowofholesthatis
approximatelyhalfthespeedofsound(orless)andreducesthelowfrequencyairblastgeneratedby
faceareamovementorbysurfaceareamounding.
iv)Wherepossible,cornerholesattheendofrowsshouldbegivenextradelaytimebecauseofthe
greaterdegreeofxationoftherockinthoselocationsrequiresmoretimefortherockblastedby
previouslyredadjacentholestomoveaway.
1.B.Delayintervalbetweenrows:
i)Thedelayintervalbetweenrowsshouldbefromtwotothreetimeslongerthanthedelay
intervalbetweenholesinarow.
ii)Thelastrowintheshotshouldoftenbedelayedslightlymorethanprecedingrows.
iii)Thisservestoallowrockinpreviouslyredrowstimetomoveoutandtendstoreduceback
breakintherockbehindtheblast.
Note:Regardlessofthedelaytimesselectedforholesinthesameroworforthedelaytimebetween
rows,itisabsolutelyessentialthatthedelayintervalsbesucientlyshortthatthereisabuerzone
betweenadetonatingholeanddetonatorsthathaveyettoseetheirinitiatingsignal.Thisisusually
accomplishedbyusinglongerdownholedelays.
Anadditionalhazardcanexistwheredelaytimes(comparedtoburdenandspacing)areexcessively
long,causingcutosoftheinitiationsystemorpowdercolumnsduetogroundshift.Again,this
needstobeanalyzedonacasebycasebasisandaccountedforduringblastdesign.
Directionofheaveorthrow:Itisgenerallypossibletocontrolthedirectionofheaveofthematerial
fromablastthroughapplicationoftheinitiationsystemtimingsequence.Ing5,anarrowshows
thedirectionsofmostlogicalheavewhenthevariousdelaysequencesshownareused.Thenumbers
inthevariousguresrepresenttheinitiationsequence.Shootingrowbyrowwillgenerallylaythe
muckoutinfrontoftheshot.ShootingwithaVcuttimingpa ernwillusuallyresultinamuckpile
thattendstomoundupinthecenterinfrontoftheshot.
Themethodofdiggingouttheshotwillusuallydeterminewhichispreferable.
Thedirectionofmaximumvibration(allotherthingsbeingequal)willtheoreticallybeinthe
directionoppositefromthedirectionofheave.
LocationandOrientationofPrimer:Inmostinstancestheprimingchargewillbelocatedatthe
bo omofthehole.Iftheprimingchargewaslocatedatthetopofthepowdercolumn,theenergy
wouldbreakthroughthesurfaceearlierintheexplosionprocess,gasseswouldventsoonerand
muchoftheircontributiontothefragmentationprocesswouldbelost.
Theorientationofthedetonatorintheprimingchargeshouldbesuchthatthedetonatorispointing
inthedirectionoftheexplosivescolumn.I.e.thedetonatorwouldbepointingupwardinabo om
primingchargeanddownwardinatopprimingcharge.
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FRAGMENTATION:Primaryfragmentationoccursduringthedetonationphase.Theshockwaves13/30

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FRAGMENTATION:Primaryfragmentationoccursduringthedetonationphase.Theshockwaves
exceedthecompressiveandthetensilestrengthcapacityoftherock,andtherockiscrushedand
pulverizedclosetothedrillhole,andradialcrackswillbecreatedoutfromtheholetoacertain
extent(equalto45timestheholeradius).Thegaspressurewillpenetratenewcracksandexisting
ssuresandjoints,looseningtherockmassandthrowingitoutandoverthebenchoor.
Secondaryfragmentationbreakagestartswiththethrowwhenfragmentedmaterialacceleratesout
fromthebench.Thesecondarybreakageisa ributedto:
Collisionsbetweenfragmentsintheairandbetweenfragmentsandthebenchoor.
Highcompressivestresslevelsandconservedelasticenergyintherockarereleasedwhenthe
fragmentsareloosenedfromthebench.
Thefragmentationvariesthroughtherockpile.SeeFig.7.Thecoarserfragmentsoriginatefromthe
rstrowandfromtheunchargedzoneintheupperpartoftheblast.
Controllablefactorswhichinuenceprimaryfragmentation:
Drillholediameter
Massofexplosivecharge
Stresswavespeakvalues
Chargedistributioninthebench
Secondaryfragmentationmaybeincreasedbyaploughshapedringpa ern.Fragmentationisalso
inuencedbytheoriginalfracturingoftherock.Thisappliesbothduringthedetonationandinthe
followingoperations,suchasloading,transportation,crushingandplacingoftherock.

(h ps://miningandblasting.les.wordpress.com/2012/10/f10.jpg)
Fig.7
Studiesoftherockpileshowthat:
Thecoarsestfractionsintherockpileoriginatesfromtheshoulder/edgesectionoftheblast,and
fromtheunchargedvolume.
Thecoarserfractionsformaskirtwhichcoversthetopofthepile.Increasedunchargedlength
rapidlyincreasesthedepthofthistoplayer.
Fragmentationoftheshouldersectionishighlydependentuponthebenchtopconditions.Terrain
blastsnormallyproducemoreblocksthanpreviouslysubdrilledbenchoorconditionswhich
originatefromanoverlyingblast.Decreasingthestemminglengthtoreducetheamountof
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oversizedblockwillnotnecessarilybeasuccess.Mostlikely,gasventingwillappearresultingin

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oversizedblockwillnotnecessarilybeasuccess.Mostlikely,gasventingwillappearresultingin
excessiveyrocks.
Thepartoftherockpilewhichoriginatesfromthechargedpartoftheblastgivesthemost
fragmentedrock.
ROCKMASSFRACTURING:Thediscontinuitiesorweaknessplanesoftherockmassinuencethe
blastability.Theweaknessplanesarerecognisedbyli leornoshearstrengthalongtheplanes.
Typicaldiscontinuityfeaturesare:
Systematicallyfracturedrockmass
i)parallelorientedjointsandssures
ii)foliationplanesorbeddingplanes
Markedsinglejoints
Filledjoints
Crushedzonesandzoneswithmineralorclayll
Fracturingischaracterisedbyrateoffracturing(typeandfrequency)aswellasorientation(angle
betweenblastdirectionandweaknessplanes).Variousrockclassicationsystemscanbeusedto
characterizethefracturingoftherockmass.HerewementionRQD,RMRandRMi.Theymoreor
lessmeasurethesamerockparameters.
Thedierentfracturingparameterscanbedescribedasfollows:
Jointsmeancontinuousplanesofweakness.Thesejointscanbeopen,e.g.beddingjointsin
granite,orlledwithclayorweakminerals,e.g.calcite,chloriteorsimilarminerals.
Fissuresareplanesofweaknesswhichcanonlybefollowedoverpartsoftheface.Itcanbe
lledjointswithlowshearstrengthandbeddingplanessures(partings)e.g.asinmicaschist
andmicagneiss.
Homogeneousrockmassmeansmassiverockwithoutjointsorssuresandmayoccurin
intrusivedikes,sills,batholithsetc.
Increasedssurejointdegreegivesbe erblastability.Thisistypicalinregionalmetamorphicrock
types.
Systematicallyorientedjointsetsmaketherockmorediculttoblast.Largeblocksareisolatedin
thethrowwithoutbeingcrushed.Fracturedconditionsarecharacteristicforrocksinsurfaceblasting.
BLASTINGDIRECTION:Normallytheblastingdirectionisperpendiculartothefaceofbenchface,
anditshouldbeadjustedaccordingtothedirectionofthefracturing.Inspecialcases,thebenchface
directionmaybexedinanonfavourabledirectionduetotopography,quarrybordersorstrict
geometricaldemands,asinroadcu ingsorbuildingsites.Inthesecases,theringpa erncanbe
usedtocontroltheblastdirectioninamorefavourabledirectionandimprovetheblastingresult.
Beforedrilling,theblastdirectionshouldbesetaccordingtotheorientationofthemainjointing
systems.Fragmentation,backbreakandtoeproblemsarealldependentupontheblastingdirection.
Eventhoughoptimalfragmentationusuallyisthemostimportantcriterion,considerationofback
wall,toeandbenchoormustbeconsideredtogetanoptimaltotalresult.Orientationoftheback
wallmaybealongaweaknessplaneandtheblastdirectionturnedcloseuptotheoptimalangle.

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Quarrymanagementshouldprovidedocumentationofthemaindiscontinuitysystemsinoperational

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Quarrymanagementshouldprovidedocumentationofthemaindiscontinuitysystemsinoperational
maps.Theblastingresultsshouldbefollowedupaccordingtoblastingdirectionsandmainfracture
systems.Theresultsfromthesestudieswillbethefoundationforfurtherblastplanningandoptimal
quarrymanagement.
Someofthemostcommoncombinationsofrocktype,fracturingandconventionalquarryingblasting
resultsarediscussed.Theseare:
Anisotropicrockmasswithapproximatelyverticalfracturing.
Anisotropicrockmasswithinclinedfracturing.
Rockmasswithverticalfracturingandli leanisotropy.
Rockmasswithinclinedfracturingandli leanisotropy.
Anisotropyoftherockgivesdirectionaldependentrockstrengthanddirectionaldependentblasting
eects.Theanglebetweenweaknessplanesandblastdirectionisgivenbytheangle.Blastdirection
isdenedtobeperpendiculartothebenchwallface.BenchwalldirectionisdescribedbyA,B,Cor
D.
Anisotropicrockmasswithapproximatelyverticalfracturing:

(h ps://miningandblasting.les.wordpress.com/2012/10/1.jpg)
FACE
DIRECTION

FRAGMENTATION

BACKBREAKANDTOE
PROBLEMS

BENCH
FLOORUNDERBREAK

Medium(1)

small

medium

Poor(2)

large

large

mediumtogood(3)

small

medium

Medium(1)

small

medium

1.Connedholesintheblastgivepoorbreakagewithbenchoorunderbreaksasaresult.
2.Gasventingalongschistosityinthewalls.Flyrockandblocksisnormal,particularlyintherst
row.Spacingmustbereducedintherstrowtoreducetheseproblems.
3.BlastdirectionCismostfavourable.Thebestresultwillappearwithblastdirectionperpendicular
toCandbackwallalongD.Insuchrocktypes,thebenchoorconditionsoftenwillbethemain
parameterwhendesigningthedrillingpa ern.
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Inclinedfracturing:

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Inclinedfracturing:

(h ps://miningandblasting.les.wordpress.com/2012/10/2.jpg)
FACE
DIRECTION

FRAGMENTATION

BACKBREAKANDTOE
PROBLEMS

BENCH
FLOORUNDERBREAK

Poor(1)

Large(2)

large

good

some

medium

good

some

Medium(3)

Good(1)

some

mediumtolarge

1.Themainproblemwithinclinedschistosityisthefactthatthemostfavourableblastdirection(B)is
paralleltothestrikedirection.Whenringrowbyrow,thefacedoesnotbecomestienoughandit
willhaveexcessivebuckling.
Thisproblemcanbesolvedbyusingreducedbenchheightorsmalldiameterdrillholes.
2.Somebackbreakandbackslidesonssuresalongtheschistosity.
3.Inssurefracturedrock,Cisthemostfavourableorientationwhenitcomestoblastdirectionand
thebackwall.
Independentuponblastingdirection,holedeectionmaybeaconsiderableproblemininclined
schistoserock,resultinginzoneswithpoorfragmentationandbenchoorproblems.
Approximatelyverticalfracturingandli leanisotropy(Typicalrocktypesarequar iteand
granitegneiss):

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(h ps://miningandblasting.les.wordpress.com/2012/10/3.jpg)
FACE
DIRECTION

FRAGMENTATION

BACKBREAKANDTOE
PROBLEMS

BENCH
FLOORUNDERBREAK

good

li le

medium

slightlypoor

Some(2)

Varying(4)

good

Much(3)

Li le(5)

good

Li le(1)

medium

1.Li lebackbreak,eventhoughincorrectalignmentofdrillholesaccordingtothefracturing
directionwillgivelargefalloutsalongtheweaknessplanes,evenfor<10.
2.Roughandunevenbackwall.Thefacegetsmoreunevenwithhigherfracturingdegree,increased
drillholediameteranddrillholepressure.Thisresultsinmoreblocksinfrontoftherockpile.
3.Maximumbackbreakfor=45,somelargerblockswilloccuratthebackoftherockpiledueto
fallouts.Backbreakcanbereducedbyincreasingtheunchargedlengthinthebackrow.
4.Gaspressureleakagesinthefaceresultinginyrock,poorfragmentation(especiallyalongthe
benchoor)andgeneralbenchoorproblems.Especiallyinjointfracturedrock.
5.Benchoorproblemsmayoccuriftherstrowbreakspoorly.Apossiblewaytomakethisbe eris
todrillalongDandrealongC.
Rockwithinclinedfracturingandli leanisotropy:

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(h ps://miningandblasting.les.wordpress.com/2012/10/4.jpg)
FACE
DIRECTION

FRAGMENTATION

BACKBREAKANDTOE
PROBLEMS

BENCH
FLOORUNDERBREAK

Poor(1)

verylarge(2)

large

good

Some

medium

verygood

li le

Medium(3)

good

li le

mediumtolarge(4)

1.Alargeamountofblockfromtheunchargedlengthinexfoliated,jointsheetedrock.Ifblastingon
terrainbench,thetopshoulddipbackwards,otherwisemanyblockswillmixintothechargedpartof
therockpile.Thisisdenitivelytheleastfavourableblastdirectioninjointfracturedrock.
2.Extrasubdrillingisnecessarytoavoidbenchoorproblems.
3.Cisthemostfavourableorientationifthebackwallandtherstrowbreaksproperly.Ifnot,less
specicchargeinthebackrowandsmallerholespacingintherstrowwillimprovetheresult.
4.Benchoorproblemsarereducedwithincreasedsubdrilling.Necessarysubdrillingdependson
dipangle.
Tosomeextent,holedeectionmayreducethefragmentationdegreeandincreasethebenchoor
problems.
Additionalinformation:

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