Estimation of mining time-span to improve the solution time in long-term production planning

Document Type : Research Paper


1 School of Mining Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Mining Engineering, Amirkabir University of Technology, Tehran, Iran


Long-term production planning in open-pit mines is a precedence-constraint knapsack problem. A spatial representation of the mining region (called the block-model) is the primary input of mine planning models. One should note that as the number of blocks and periods to be planned increases, the number of decision variables increases. This paper presents a fast yet straightforward algorithm to reduce binary variables in open-pit mine production planning models. The algorithm considers mining capacity, processing capacity, and pit deepening rate to estimate the time span within which a block is mineable. This paper applies the algorithm in 12 different cases. The number of blocks varies from 1000 to 240000, and the mining periods range from 6 to 30 years. According to the results, this algorithm is helpful for problem size reduction.


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