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Case Study of the Effects of Longwall Mining Induced Subsidence on Shallow Ground Water Sources in the Northern Appalachian Coalfield
  • Published Date:
    1/1/1988
Filetype[PDF-936.20 KB]


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  • Description:
    The Bureau of Mines monitored surface subsidence and water level fluctuations in 10 shallow observation wells above a series of four adjacent longwall panels in southwestern Pennsylvania, for about 4 yr. This study attempted to correlate the changes in the water levels within the observation wells to the measured vertical and horizontal ground movements associated with subsidence. Results of this study indicate that the fluctuation of the water levels appears to be a function of the well location relative to the mine layout and the proximity of mining. Wells are generally unaffected by mining of a preceding panel unless they are located within the angle of draw for that panel. Wells located at the centerline of a longwall panel exhibit the greatest fluctuation and head loss. This relationship may be related to the strain developed by the advancing longwall face. The water levels in the wells monitored fell at the greatest rate when the ground surrounding the well was in tension. The rate of the decline decreased as the dynamic development of the strains was changing from tension to compression. The water levels were found to be near the premining level before the ground was subject to maximum compressive strain. Nine of the ten wells investigated recovered to their premining water level after mining was completed.

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