Characterising and Structural Review of the Rock Mass and Its Geological Structures at Open Pit Mine in Queensland-Australia

  • Maged Al MandalawiEmail author
  • Manar Sabry
  • Greg You
  • Mohannad Sabry
Conference paper
Part of the Sustainable Civil Infrastructures book series (SUCI)


Rock characterisation is important to the feasibility of the Handlebar Hill open cut mine at Mt Isa, Queensland-Australia, because of the complex structural geology and the diversity of slope formations. The different rocks are affected by complete and moderate oxidisations coupled with mining works, giving rise to potential slope instability. Through the characterisation of these rocks, there is more confidence in the prediction of their behaviors in terms of failure mechanisms and slope stability. The objective of this research was to evaluate the properties of the pit rock masses. The geotechnical engineering practice approach was based on defining the parameters of the Hoek-Brown, Barton-Bandis and Mohr-Coulomb failure criteria. A program involving investigation that included field measurements, laboratory tests, hydrogeological settings, empirical indices and findings using the RocLab program was applied. The inputs help to analysis of pit slope stability and to understand the effects of different pit configurations on slope performance to allow safe and economic mining operations.


Geological structures Orebody deposits Lithological domains Intact rock 



The authors would like to thank Glencore Zinc for providing permission to carry out this research and publish this paper. In addition, the authors would like to acknowledge Dr. Ahmed Soliman Principal Geotechnical Advisor, for his support.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Maged Al Mandalawi
    • 1
    Email author
  • Manar Sabry
    • 1
  • Greg You
    • 1
  • Mohannad Sabry
    • 2
  1. 1.Faculty of Science and TechnologyFederation UniversityMt. HelenAustralia
  2. 2.School of Computing, Engineering and MathematicsWestern Sydney UniversitySydneyAustralia

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