Service of Mining geotechnics

Geotechnical design of enbankments for tailings deposits

A tailings deposit is any work structured in a safe way to contain tailings from a wet concentration plant of mineral species. Depending on how they are processed, transported, discharged and stored, the resulting tailings deposits can be divided into two types: non-conventional tailings deposits (thickened, or paste and filtered) and conventional tailings dams. In this case, we work with the latter, which have retaining enbankments made of the thickest soils, which are hydraulically discharged and distributed.

Regarding the geotechnical design of the enbankments for these tailings deposits, the dimensions of the deposit must be taken into consideration; height, slopes, tailings slopes and width of the crest of the enbankments. In addition to knowing the information of possible adjacent deposits within a radius of 500 m, with their respective geometric dimensions.

However, special characteristics are also examined, such as:

– The type of transport from the concentrate to the deposit (pipeline, channel or other).

– Tailings classification method (if required by the project).

– Tailings mass balance.

– Sand and slat deposition system.

– Drainage systems and collection of percolated water from the enbankments.



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