The current state of the problem of predicting spontaneous combustion and explosiveness of sulfide ores and host rocks at a depth of more than 1500 m.

Ufatova Z.G.
Norilsk State Industrial Institute, Norilsk, Russian Federation
Russian Mining Industry №2 / 2021 р. 77-80

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Abstract: The mining factors of ore fire hazard during mining of the lower horizons of the Oktyabrskiy and Talnakhskiy northern deposits are considered. It is noted that the probability of self-heating of sulfide ores and the sulfide dust’s tendency to spontaneous combustion and explosiveness in certain sections of rich sulfide copper-nickel ores are quite high. The oxidation of sulfide ores occurs continuously due to the absorption of oxygen from the mine atmosphere and is accompanied by the release of heat. The oxidation can be accompanied by intense heating of the ore in mining conditions, with the accumulation of large volumes of broken rock mass for a long time in treatment and preparation workings and with free access of air to the bulk of the ore mass. The processes of ore and rock oxidation are especially intense when their moisture content is 1–4%. When the ore is heated above 35 °C, sulfurous gas (SO2) may be released. The main signs of the above-mentioned oxidative processes’ development and signs of the initial phase of a possible underground endogenous fire are indicated along with a constant increase in the temperature of the air coming from the bottom of the face. It is noted that in case of detecting at least one of the signs of a possible underground endogenous fire’s initial phase, urgent measures are taken to improve the ventilation of this working face, to ensure maximum intensity of shipped ore from the fresh stream and the content of sulfurous gas and hydrogen sulfide and mine air temperature are determined every 4 hours. If after two days on the outgoing stream there is no decrease in the content of sulfur dioxide and air temperature, then it should be considered that an endogenous fire has occurred. Measures for the prevention, localization and elimination of foci of spontaneous combustion are given. As an additional safety measure, it is recommended to moisten the dust, since sulfide dust becomes non-explosive at a moisture content of 9–9,5%, and at a humidity of 10% the dust does not transmit an explosive impulse.

Keywords: oxidative processes, fire hazard, spontaneous combustion, sulfide ores, sulfurous gas, mine air, rock, ore mass, sulfide dust explosiveness

For citation: Ufatova Z.G. The current state of the problem of predicting spontaneous combustion and explosiveness of sulfide ores and host rocks at a depth of more than 1500 m. Gornaya promyshlennost = Russian Mining Industry. 2021;(2):77–80. (In Russ.) DOI: 10.30686/1609-9192-2021-2-77-80.

Article info

Received: 30.03.2021

Revised: 03.04.2021

Accepted: 05.04.2021

Information about the author

Zinaida G. Ufatova – Associate Professor at the Mining Department, Norilsk State Industrial Institute, Norilsk, Russian Federation; e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


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