Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 32131
Determination of the Optimum Size of Building Stone Blocks: Case Study of Delichai Travertine Mine

Authors: Hesam Sedaghat Nejad, Navid Hosseini, Arash Nikvar Hassani


Determination of the optimum block size with high profitability is one of the significant parameters in designation of the building stone mines. The aim of this study was to determine the optimum dimensions of building stone blocks in Delichai travertine mine of Damavand in Tehran province through combining the effective parameters proven in determination of the optimum dimensions in building stones such as the spacing of joints and gaps, extraction tools constraints with the help of modeling by Gemcom software. To this end, following simulation of the topography of the mine, the block model was prepared and then in order to use spacing joints and discontinuities as a limiting factor, the existing joints set was added to the model. Since only one almost horizontal joint set with a slope of 5 degrees was available, this factor was effective only in determining the optimum height of the block, and thus to determine the longitudinal and transverse optimum dimensions of the extracted block, the power of available loader in the mine was considered as the secondary limiting factor. According to the aforementioned factors, the optimal block size in this mine was measured as 3.4×4×7 meter.

Keywords: Building stone, optimum block size, Delichai Travertine Mine, loader power.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI):

Procedia APA BibTeX Chicago EndNote Harvard JSON MLA RIS XML ISO 690 PDF Downloads 1093


[1] M.A. Garcia-del-Cura, M.E. Sanz-Montero, D. Benavente, J. Martinez-Martine, A. Bernabeu, N. Cueto, “Sistemas travertinicos de Alhama de Almeria”: caracteristicas petrograficas y petrofisicas. Geo-Temas. 2008, vol. 10, pp. 1555–8 (in Spanish).
[2] S. Mosch, D. Nikolayew, O. Ewiak, “Optimized extraction of dimension stone blocks”. Environ Earth Sci, 2011, vol. 63, pp. 1911–1924.
[3] A. Pentecost, 2005. Travertine. Berlin, Springer-Verlag.
[4] B. Soler Huertas, El travertino Rojo de Mula (Murcia), Definición de un mármol local. 2005, Verdolay. 9, pp. 141–164 (in Spanish).
[5] O. Solohen, H. Luodes, C. Ehlers, “Exploration for dimensional stone – implication and examples from the Precembrian of southern Finland”. Eng Geol, 1999, vol. 56 (3), pp. 275–291.
[6] K. Goshtasbi, D. Khodadadi, “Determination of Optimum Block Size in the Mining of Ornamental Stones by Diamond Wire”. Geoscience, 2005, vol. 57, pp. 120-125.
[7] National brick pavers, committed to quality since, 1989. Available at
[8] A. Török, Hungarian travertine: weathering forms and durability. In: Fort, R., Alvarez de Buergo, M., Gómez-Heras, M., Vazquez-Calvo, C. (Eds.), Heritage, weathering and conservation. London, Taylor & Francis Group, 2006, pp. 199–204.
[9] I. Sidraba, K.C. Normandin, G. Cultrone, M.J. Scheffler, Climatological and regional weathering of Roman travertine. In: Prˇikryl, R., Siegl, P. (Eds), 2004. Architectural and sculptural stone in man-cultivated landscape. Prague, The Karolinum Press, pp. 165–181.
[10] H. Sönmez, H.A. Nefeslioglu, C. Gökçeoğlu. “Effects of the number and spacing of discontinuities on weighted joint density (wJd)”. Rock Mech Rock Ent, 2004, vol. 37 (5), pp. 403–413.
[11] M. Pedley, “Tufas and travertines of the Mediterranean region: a testing ground for freshwater carbonate concepts and developments. Sedimentology”. 2009, vol. 56, pp. 221–246.
[12] A. Török, “Influence of fabric on the physical properties of limestones”, In: Kourkoulis, S.K. (editor), Fracture and failure of natural building stones. Dordrecht, Springer, 2006, pp. 487–495.
[13] R.E. Goodman, “Block theory and its application”. Geotechnique. 1995, 45 (3), pp. 383–423.
[14] E. Hakan, T. Necdet, “Rock mass block quality designation for marble production”. International Journal of Rock Mechanics & Mining Sciences, 2014, vol. 69, pp. 26–30.
[15] K.S. Kalenchuck, M.S. Diederichs, S. McKinnon, “Characterizing block geometry in jointed rock masses”. Int J Rock Mech Min Sci, 2006, vol. 43(8), pp. 1212–1225.
[16] Industries and Business Organization, 2013. report of Delichai travertine mine, Tehran, Iran.
[17] S. Muller, “Estimation of the Maximum Tire-Road Friction Coefficient”. Journal of Dynamic Systems Measurement and Control, 2003, vol. 125, pp. 607-617.
[18] M. Mutlutürk, “Determining the amount of marketable blocks of dimensional stone before actual extraction”. 2007, J Min Sci, vol. 43, pp. 67–72.
[19] Komatsu mining system company, 1998. Komatsu WA 800-2 manual. Available at
[20] M.D. Jackson, F. Marra, R.L. Hay, C. Cawood, E.M. Winkler, “The judicious selection and preservation of tuff and travertine building stone in ancient Rome”. Archaeometry. 2005, vol. 47, pp. 485–510.