For over five years, Itasca Chile SpA (Itasca) has developed and continuously updated, the 3D numerical groundwater flow model for this open pit mine in Chile. The model is primarily used to estimate pore pressure distributions for past, present, and predictive stages of the pit excavation. These are subsequently used for 3D slope stability analysis. With the new and updated model, new predictions for future stages were made, and new mining and drainage plans were evaluated from a hydrogeological point of view.
Better highways through applied geology.
Miguel Fuenzalida (M.A.Sc., B.Eng.) is a senior geomechanics engineer at Itasca Consulting Group, a consulting and software firm across the mining, civil engineering, and energy industries. He holds a Bachelor’s degree and a Master of Science in Mining Engineering from the University of Chile. He has received the “Juan Bruggen” Best Graduate of the Class of 2010 Mining Engineering Award by the Mining Engineering Institute of Chile (IIMCh). Based in Minneapolis, USA, Miguel provides consulting services to underground mining by applying numerical modeling to sequencing, stability, ground support, and mining-induced seismicity. Miguel has extensive experience in sublevel, block and panel caving projects—from concept to feasibility level—and cave mines in North America, South America, Africa, Eastern Europe, Southeast Asia, and Australia where he has specialized in undercut and extraction level design, draw scheduling, forecasting of caveability, fragmentation, recovery, infrastructure stability, and surface subsidence. He has participated in several mining and rock mechanics conferences and has been part of international collaborative research consortiums such as Mass Mining Technology (MMT) and Caving2040, focused on critical reviews of conventional caving design approaches, collation of common caving practices, and advancing the understanding of caving fundamentals. He is currently a member of the American Rock Mechanics Association (ARMA) and the Society of Mining Engineering (SME).
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