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ArticleName Energy intensity of rock destruction at the diamond deposits of Yakutia after freezing and thawing cycles
DOI 10.17580/or.2018.05.02
ArticleAuthor Zakharov E. V., Kurilko A. S.

Institute of Mining of the North of the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences (Yakutsk, Russia):

Zakharov E. V., Senior Researcher, Candidate of Engineering Sciences,
Kurilko A. S., Deputy Director, Doctor of Engineering Sciences,


The article provides the results of experimental studies of changes in the specific energy consumption for the destruction of carbonate rocks at the diamond deposits of Yakutia under the action of cyclic freezing and thawing. Kimberlite samples of the Internatsionalnaya and Mir diamond pipes, as well as limestone samples of the Udachnaya and Aikhal pipes of ALROSA were studied. A methodology was developed enabling highly accurate comparative tests with the destruction of rocks after various types of effects, in particular after alternating temperature effects. Using the methodology developed, it was established that the first three to five freezing and thawing cycles in an aquatic environment lead to a decrease in the energy intensity of destruction by three to five times for kimberlite and by two to three times for limestone. Studies on the disintegration of rocks have shown that approximately 70 % of the initial fraction of kimberlites of the Internatsionalnaya and Mir pipes, as well as 50 % of the limestones of the Udachnaya and Aikhal pits disintegrate spontaneously (without mechanical impacts) into finer size classes after the first three cycles of freezing and thawing in an aquatic environment. The disintegration of the samples studied and the reduction in the energy intensity of their destruction are explained by the development and accumulation of damage in the rock under the action of cyclic freezing and thawing. This damage is caused primarily by the freezing and by the migration of moisture in the rock pores, as well as by the thermal stresses associated with the related changes in the volume of mineral grains composing the rock and corresponding to their coefficients of thermal expansion.

keywords Energy intensity of destruction, freeze-thaw cycles, disintegration, frost weathering, porosity, salinity, kimberlite, carbonate rocks, cryolithozone

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