Document Type : Original Research Paper


1 Shahrood University of Technology

2 MSc Student, Department of Mining, Geophysics, and Petroleum Engineering, Shahrood University of Technology, Shahrood, Iran

3 PhD Candidate, Department of Mining Engineering, Isfahan University of Technology, Isfahan, Iran.

4 Olum Tahghighat Azaz University



The stratified-sedimentary rock mass, as the typical host ground of coal mine tunnels, is characterized by highly non-isotropic deformation due to the very persistent discontinuity of bedding planes. This study evaluates the effect of tunnel location relative to the host ground strata on the excavation-induced displacements around a coal mine tunnel driven along the inclined coal seam. To achieve this goal, a calibrated finite element method (FEM) numerical model based on field monitoring displacements was developed for the coal mine tunnel at a depth of 300 m. This calibrated numerical model was then utilized to investigate the effect of the horizontal location of the tunnel on the induced displacement field through sensitivity analysis. Finally, the sensitivity analysis results were compared in terms of displacement components around the tunnel. The results of this study demonstrate a reasonable level of accuracy (for practical demands) of the calibrated numerical model, with an average error of about 8% for maximum displacements at measured points. The numerical models show an asymmetric spatial distribution of displacements around the tunnel due to the anisotropy of the rock mass, especially in the case of inclined layers. The arrangement of weak-strength coal and intercalary stone layers relative to the excavation line of the tunnel plays a key role in this issue. The critical state of displacements (maximum displacement in sensitivity analysis) occurs where the intersection line of the coal-intercalary stone is tangent to the tunnel excavation line. Additionally, the excavation-induced displacement decreases as the distance between the coal-intercalary stone interface and the tunnel increases, with a distance of about 1.5 m suggested for practical applications.


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