Frozen Core Tailings Dam: Part 2, Long-Term Creep Deformation

Author(s): 
Maritz Rykaart, A. Barrero, Arcesio Lizcano
Date: 
Monday, October 1, 2018
First presented: 
Tailings and Mine Waste
Type: 
Published paper
Category: 
Mine Waste

Tailings management at the Hope Bay Project in Nunavut, Canada, includes reliance on an innovative frozen core dam. This dam does not have a tailings beach against it, and has been designed as a water retaining dam with a 30-year design life. The dam foundation is subject to significant long-term creep deformation. This paper, which is the second in a two-part series, describe the dam performance six years post construction, and compares modelled creep deformation with field performance data collected from shallow and deep settlement monitors, and inclinometers. The data and modelling confirm that creep deformation is less than originally anticipated during the design stage, and that continued long-term creep deformation of the dam will not result in excessive long-term strains that could impact the structure’s performance. The first paper in this series describes the thermal performance of the dam, which is a key parameter driving creep deformation.

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