Examination of the Effect of Time Delay on Fragmentation
Gkikizas Lampropoulos, Nikolaos
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The main objective of blasting is to produce optimum fragmentation for downstream processing. Fragmentation is usually considered optimum when the average fragment size is minimum and the fragmentation distribution as uniform as possible. One of the parameters affecting blasting fragmentation is believed to be time delay between holes of the same row. Although one can find a significant number of studies in the literature, which examine the relationship between time delay and fragmentation, their results have been often controversial. The purpose of this work is to increase the level of understanding of how time delay between holes of the same row affects fragmentation. Two series of experiments were conducted for this purpose. The first series involved tests on small scale grout and granite blocks to determine the moment of burden detachment. The instrumentation used for these experiments consisted mainly of strain gauges and piezoelectric sensors. Some experiments were also recorded with a high speed camera. It was concluded that the time of detachment for this specific setup is between 300 and 600 μs. The second series of experiments involved blasting of a 2 meter high granite bench and its purpose was the determination of the hole-to-hole delay that provides optimum fragmentation. The fragmentation results were assessed with image analysis software. Moreover, vibration was measured close to the blast and the experiments were recorded with high speed cameras. The results suggest that fragmentation was optimum when delays between 4 and 6 ms were used for this specific setup. Also, it was found that the moment at which gases first appear to be venting from the face was consistently around 6 ms after detonation.