Rock strength, brittleness and blast fragmentation

Neville Fowkes, G.C. Hocking, David Mason

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference paperConference paperpeer-review


    The problem considered by the MISG was that of rock sizes obtained
    during targeted blasting. The goal is to determine the average size distribution
    of rocks given the conditions and explosives used. The Kuz-Ram model is an
    empirical model that has been used over the past 25 years for estimating
    the mean fragment size and distribution. The model is inadequate because it
    contains an unknown factor that may vary by an order of magnitude. However,
    we also believe it is conceptually awed because important rock properties such as rock brittleness and yield strength are not accounted for `at rst order' and the model result is dimensionally inconsistent. During the MISG a dimensional analysis was performed in an attempt to redress this error. In addition, two new models of the dynamic fracturing process were derived; a `breaking spring model' and a continuum model. The breaking spring model is shown to display the `correct' stress/strain behavior for ductile rock types, but needs modication to handle hard rocks. Initial work on the continuum model seems to give some promise of explaining the rock behaviour during blasting.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationProceedings of the Mathematics in Industry Study Group South Africa MISGSA 2016
    EditorsD.P. Mason
    PublisherUniversity of the Witwatersrand
    Number of pages22
    ISBN (Print)9780987033666
    Publication statusPublished - 2016
    Event2016 Mathematics in Industry Study Group - University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa
    Duration: 1 Feb 20165 Feb 2016


    Conference2016 Mathematics in Industry Study Group
    Abbreviated titleMISG 2016
    Country/TerritorySouth Africa
    Internet address


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