Document Type : Original Research Paper


Department of Mining Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran , Iran


Waste rock dumping is very important in the production planning of open-pit mines. This subject is more crucial when there is a potential of acid-forming (PAF) by waste rocks. In such a type of mines, to protect the environment, the PAF materials should be encapsulated by non-harmful rocks. Therefore, block sequencing of the mined materials should be in such a way that both the environmental and economic considerations are considered. If non-acid forming (NAF) rocks are not mined in a proper time, then a stockpile is required for the NAF materials, which later on would be re-handled for encapsulation of PAF rocks. In the available models, the focus is on either block sequencing or waste dumping strategy. In this work, an attempt has been made to develop an integrated mathematical model for simultaneous optimization of block sequencing and waste rock dumping. The developed model not only maximizes the net present value (NPV) but also decreases the destructive environmental effects of inappropriate waste dumping. The proposed model, which is solved by a CPLEX engine, is applied to two different iron deposits. Also the performance of the proposed model is cross-checked by applying the available (traditional) models in a two-step manner. According to the results obtained, it can be considered that utilizing the developed model, because of extensive re-handling cost reduction, the NPV improvement is significant, especially when the overall stripping ratio is higher (deposit case A).


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