Geotechnical and Geological Engineering

, Volume 26, Issue 2, pp 133–146 | Cite as

Fragmentation Energy in Rock Blasting

  • Essaïeb HamdiEmail author
  • Najla Bouden Romdhane
  • Jean du Mouza
  • Jean Michel Le Cleac’h
Original Paper


The theoretical explosive energy used in blasting is a common issue in many recent research works (Spathis 1999; Sanchidrian 2003). It is currently admitted that the theoretical available energy of the explosives is split into several parts during a blast: seismic, kinetic, backbreaks, heave, heat and fragmentation energies. Concerning this last one, the energy devoted to the breakage and to the creation of blocks within the muckpile can be separated from the microcracking energy which is devoted to developing new and/or extending existing micro cracks within the blocks (Hamdi et al. 2001; López et al. 2002). In order to investigate these two types of energy, a first and important task is to precisely study the main parameters characterising the two constitutive elements of the rock mass (rock matrix and discontinuity system). This should provide useful guidelines for the choice of the blasting parameters (type of explosive, blasting pattern, etc.), in order to finally control the comminution process. Within the frame of the EU LESS FINES research project, devoted to the control of fines production, the methodology was developed in order to: (1) characterize the in situ rock mass, by evaluating the density, anisotropy, interconnectivity and fractal dimension of the discontinuity system and (2) evaluate fragmentation (both micro and macro) energy spent during the blasting operation. The methodology was applied to three production blasts performed in the Klinthagen quarry (Sweden) allowing to estimate the part of the fragmentation energy devoted to the formation of muck pile blocks on one side and to the muckpile blocks microcracking on the other side.


Rock mass Explosive energy Fragmentation energy Sweden Microcracks 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Essaïeb Hamdi
    • 1
    Email author
  • Najla Bouden Romdhane
    • 1
  • Jean du Mouza
    • 2
  • Jean Michel Le Cleac’h
    • 2
  1. 1.Unité de Recherche en Ingénierie GéotechniqueEcole Nationale d’Ingénieurs de TunisTunisTunisia
  2. 2.Centre des GéosciencesÉcole Nationale Supérieure des Mines de ParisParis Cedex 06France

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