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What are the advantages of open-pit mining?

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Quick Answer

Advantages of open-pit mining include a lower cost compared with other methods and a higher safety level. Open-pit mining is also better suited to quarries containing smaller amounts of the substance being mined.

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Full Answer

One of the main advantages of open-pit mining is that it is safer compared to alternatives, since the walls of a quarry created during the mining process are usually stable. Hence, they don't require extra support and are unlikely to slide or fall inwards, creating a safety hazard. The open pit also allows workers and machinery to access the site easily.

Open-pit mining doesn't require as much mechanical machinery as other mining methods. This reduces the overall cost of the mining process, and makes it financially viable to mine small deposits. More machine-intensive methods are often too costly to use on small deposits while still allowing the mine to make a profit.

Another advantage of open-pit mining is that it allows miners to get rid of low-quality materials quickly and easily. This is known in the industry as high selectivity, and it is one of the most important advantages of open-pit mining. Other methods, which have a lower selectivity, make it more difficult to filter out the low-quality materials.

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