Mechanical Excavator Performance in Yucca Mountain Tuffs

by Levent Ozdemir, Colorado Sch of Mines, Golden, United States,
F. D. Hansen, Colorado Sch of Mines, Golden, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: High Level Radioactive Waste Management 1991


A research effort of four phases is in progress at the Colorado School of Mines. The overall program will evaluate the cutability of welded tuff and other lithologies likely to be excavated at Yucca Mountain in the site characterization process. Several mechanical systems are considered with emphasis given to the tunnel boring machine. The research comprises laboratory testing, linear drag bit and disc cutter tests, and potentially large-scale laboratory demonstrations to support potential use of a tunnel boring machine in welded tuff. Preliminary estimates of mechanical excavator performance in Yucca Mountain tuff are presented here. As phases of the research project are completed, well-quantified estimates will be made of performance of mechanical excavators in the Yucca Mountain tuffs.

Subject Headings: Radioactive wastes | Excavation | Construction equipment | Tunnels | Boring | Laboratory tests | Welding | United States | Colorado | Nevada

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