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Benefits of MINEDW Code for Mine Dewatering Projects in Complex Hydrogeological Settings

Vladimir Ugorets
Monday, March 9, 2015
First presented: 
4th Itasca Symposium on Applied Numerical Modeling
Published paper
Water Management
Numerical modeling of mine-dewatering projects requires specialized features that are not present in mass-use groundwater-flow codes such as MODFLOW and FEFLOW. Many features critical to modeling groundwater flow in mine settings can be found in Itasca’s MINEDW finite-element groundwater flow code. The critical features include the ability to remove elements/nodes to simulate excavation of a pit; pinch-out capability to simulate in greater detail underground mines or specific areas of hydrogeological interests; simulation of non-Darcian flow and the transition to Darcian flow as heads and hydraulic gradients decrease; calculation of seepage faces in highwalls; and changes in hydraulic parameters in time to simulate block cave mining, longwall coal operation, or relaxation around a deep, open pit. Other features of MINEDW that enhance or simplify the modeling of mine dewatering projects include the use of specified-flux or specified-head boundary conditions, which when coupled with the fault-linking routine can simulate pumping from multiple levels in a well, variable-flux boundary conditions along external model boundaries, simulation of multiple faults without adding discretization with a fault-link subroutine, the use of a collapsing or rigid grid, pit-lake infilling simulations for both passive and active scenarios, and effective coupling of large, regional groundwater models with detailed window models.

Feature Author

Dr. Vladimir Ugorets

Dr. Vladimir Ugorets, Principal Hydrogeologist, has more than 35 years of professional experience in hydrogeology, developing and implementing groundwater flow and solute-transport models related to mine dewatering, groundwater contamination, and water resource development.  Dr. Ugorets’ areas of expertise are in design and optimization of extraction-injection wellfields, development of conceptual and numerical groundwater flow and solute-transport models, and dewatering optimization for open-pit, underground and ISR mines.

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