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Underground Mine Design, Planning and Engineering

Ensuring technical viability and economic realism


We have years of first-hand underground mining experience in most countries and across multiple commodities using all common mining methods. As a global SRK group, we have specialist underground mining expertise to provide solutions for the unique features of each project. Based on this extensive experience, we utilise an innovative and rigorous mining method selection and planning methodology that maximises the economic benefit of the project. The methodology focuses on understanding the complete mining context or characteristics of the deposit. This understanding is fundamental to select the appropriate mining method and establish a robust mine plan. The design of stoping blocks using the appropriate cut-off grades and minimum mining widths is followed by optimised production and development scheduling. All mine design and schedule opportunities are left open until an optimised plan is defined. We recognise the constant need to match changing commodity prices and capital costs with appropriate responses from mining operations: reduction in operating and/or capital costs when prices fall, and increasing capacity when prices rise. We also understand the socio-economic implications of mining operations and address these in our strategic planning. We are focused on producing mine designs and schedules that make the most effective use of mine capital, in both short and longer term time frames. We can assist companies optimise the transition from open pit to underground mining by offering a thorough analysis of the appropriate cross-over depth as well as presenting highly mechanised and often automated solutions. Whether optimising an existing operation or deciding how to extract a new deposit, SRK can help to ensure that appropriate solutions are understood and implemented.


  • Mining context definition
  • Mining methods selection
  • Complete mine design
  • Development and production scheduling including sequence optimisation
  • Geotechnical characterisation
  • Ground support system design
  • Equipment selection
  • Engineering studies (from scoping to feasibility)
  • Drill and blast design
  • Strategic planning: cut-off grade and production rate analysis
  • Fragmentation analysis and draw control for caving operations
  • Backfill system design
  • Risk analysis and management
  • Due diligence
  • Ventilation system design
  • Operational review and assistance
SRK China