Saprolite Slope Design at the Rosebel Gold Mine

Author(s): 
Greg Abrahams and Mark Raynor
Date: 
Wednesday, September 16, 2015
First presented: 
SAIMM Slope Stability 2015
Type: 
Published paper
Category: 
Geotechnical

The Rosebel Gold Mine, located in Suriname, is comprised of eight open pits which have been developed to varying depths. Due to their origin and tropical climate setting, the rocks throughout the site are deeply weathered with Saprolite and Transition (sap-rock) extending to depths greater than 70m. Existing interim Saprolite and Transition slopes have been excavated in several of the operating pits. The performance of these slopes is extremely variable due to the impact of relict structures, groundwater, intense rainfall and protolith.

A detailed geotechnical investigation program was undertaken during 2013 through 2014 to provide slope design configurations which could be practically implemented in this high rainfall tropical environment using the capabilities of the equipment on site. This paper documents the methodology used to generate the Saprolite and Transition slope designs and the implementation requirements.

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