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You are here: Home / Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2018 / Upward surface movement above deep coal mines after closure and flooding of underground workings

André Vervoort and Pierre-Yves Declercq (2018)

Upward surface movement above deep coal mines after closure and flooding of underground workings

International Journal of Mining Science and Technology, 28(1):53 - 59.

After the mass closures of entire coal mine districts in Europe at the end of the last century, a new phenomenon of surface movement was observed—an upward movement. Although most surface movement (i.e., subsidence) occurs in the months and years after mining by the longwall method, surface movement still occurs many decades after mining is terminated. After the closure and flooding of underground excavations and surrounding rock, this movement was reversed. This paper focuses on quantifying the upward movement in two neighboring coal mines (Winterslag and Zwartberg, Belgium). The study is based on data from a remote sensing technique: interferometry with synthetic aperture radar (INSAR). The results of the study show that the rate of upward movement in the decade after closure is about 10 mm/year on average. The upward movements are not linked directly to the past exploitation directly underneath a location. The amounts of subsidence at specific locations are linked mainly to their positions relative to an inverse trough shape situated over the entire mined-out areas and their immediate surroundings. Local features, such as geological faults, can have a secondary effect on the local variation of the uplift. The processes of subsidence and uplift are based on completely different mechanisms. Subsidence is initiated by a caving process, while the process of uplift is clearly linked to flooding.

Peer Review, Open Access, Impact Factor
Radar-interferometry, Subsidence, Surface movement, Coal mining, Uplift
Special issue on ground control in mining in 2017
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