Funded by the Victorian Government (through the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources, GHERG focuses on the key issues affecting open-cut mines in the Latrobe Valley, including slope stability, groundwater impacts, environmental rehabilitation and the long-term sustainability of mine sites.
GHERG's key roles are to:
- Provide broad range geotechnical and hydro-geological research and development support to the Latrobe Valley coal mines, roads and other geotechnical infrastructures;
- Foster research and innovation in coal geotechnical and hydro-geological engineering, particularly in the areas of mine stability, mine monitoring systems and interpretation, ground subsidence, effect on rigid structure such as infrastructure, ground and surface water control in mine road pavement design, ground improvement, and evaluation of models used in practice;
- Provide support to the Technical Review Board which reviews all Victorian mining operations and their potential impacts; and
- Develop training programs through short courses presented by members of the group, as well as local or international academic and industrial experts.
Our goal is to be a Centre of Excellence in Mining Geotechnical Engineering and Geohydrology.
New soil and water research laboratories and a workshop have been established. Our state of the art geotechnical and geomechanical laboratory testing facilities, combined with our recent developments of new measurement sensors, ensure we can undertake precision testing of complex geotechnical materials for static analysis of engineering problems such as complex stress-strain behaviour in excavations, surface mining and tunnelling, or dynamic analysis of engineering problems such as road, railway and wind turbine foundations.
These facilities are being used to undertake a range of research projects into the geotechnical and hydrogeological properties of brown coal
In support of its work on expanding the hydrogeological and geotechnical knowledge in the Latrobe Valley, a research database is in development to collate the extensive historical data gathered by the State Electricity Commission for Victoria, in addition to more recent data gathered by the ongoing field programs of the three brown coal mines.