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Yielding bolt support for rock

burst prone workings
This paper was written by A Campoli & J Oldsen, Jennmar Corp, USA and R Wu, Barrick Gold
Corp, Canada, Germany and presented at Aachen 2012, Seventh International Symposium,
Rockbolting and Rock Mechanics in Mining. Mining World thanks the authors for their contribution
to this issue.

he Yield-Lok bolt (WIPO (2011)) was developed by Resin/cement grouted
Jennmar of Canada for ground support in rock prone The grout provides confinement to polymer and upset
to seismic burst conditions (Wu and Oldsen, 2010). Immediate support on installation
When exposed to high energy impact loading, Yielding from plowing the polymer with the upset
standard bolts fail in tension or pull through end
support plates. Previous yield bolt designs attempted to employ Low energy performance of the Yield-Lok bolt
either low strength grouts or metallic deformation to dissipate Under low energy (dead weight) loading conditions,
seismic energy. Weak grout systems are hampered by the Yield-Lok bolt performs similar to a point-anchored rebar
inherent difficulty in maintaining the required grout pullout bolt, providing stiff reinforcement and containment of the rock
resistance. If the grout is too strong, the bolt fails in tension. If mass. The wall of drill hole and resin provides confinement to
the grout is too weak, the bolts can be pulled out at a fraction of the polymer, producing anchorage against the upset. Figure
their tensile strength. Metallic deformation designs offer more 2 summarises results of a series of pull tests conducted
predicable yield, but are complicated and expensive. with Yield-Lok bolts installed in a 36mm borehole with fully
As illustrated in Figure 1, the Yield-Lok bolt is made of 17.2 encapsulated resin. The samples
mm diameter, grade 75 round steel bar. The typical yield and consistently yielded at the nominal steel yielding strength
ultimate tensile strength of the bolt is 14t and 19t, respectively. of 14t.
The steel bar is upset to specified dimensions at one end When conducting short and full encapsulation pull tests,
and partially or fully encapsulated in an engineered polymer the bond strength of a resin bonded bolt is a fundamental
coating to achieve designed yielding performance under high parameter in determining the effectiveness of installation. The
energy loading. The end profile of polymer coating is angled stronger the bond, the shorter the anchorage zone of the bolt
to aid insertion of the bolt. Also mixing/centering paddles, and the longer the full resistance zone over which the full bolt
longitudinally spaced over the length of the coating, provide strength is available to resist roof movement.
shredding of the resin cartridge packaging and aid in the With resin anchored systems, the anchorage provided
centering of the bolt in the borehole. The other end of the bar is by the resin is related to the length of the bond and the bond
threaded for tensioning with a nut. A dome plate and spherical
washer are used for angle compensation and to load the bolt
axially. The bolt is tensioned and provides immediate primary
support on installation. Under high energy loading conditions,
the upset transfers the impact load on the surrounding polymer
coating, resulting in confined compression, thermal softening,
and flow of the polymer around the upset, which creates the
desired plowing effect. The energy is therefore dissipated by
pulling or plowing the upset through the polymer. Part of the
dynamic energy is also consumed in the friction between the
smooth bar and the polymer coating.
The Jennmar bolts features include:

Figure 2: Series of pull tests conducted with Yield-Lok bolts

Figure 1: Yield-Lok bolt installed in a 36 mm borehole with fully encapsulated resin

32 Mining World | Volume 10 | Issue 2 | April 2013


strength can easily exceed the strength of the steel. Normally High energy performance of Yield-Lok bolt
for this reason, a specifically installed bolt with a short length A number of dynamic drop tests were conducted at the
of resin encapsulation is required to measure the anchorage CANMET test facility in Ottawa, Canada to test the high energy
properties of the resin anchor or rock shear strength rather performance of the Yield-Lok bolts.
than the strength of the bolt. Due to the nature of the Yield- The drop test method simulated a high energy load
Lok bolt design, the fundamental parameter is the yielding condition similar in amplitude and velocity to a rock burst
mechanisms response in dynamic and static testing. The event. This test protocol has been established as a bench
bond length of the Yield-Lok bolt is 750 mm, which is the mark test used in the development of other types of yielding
length of the yielding mechanism. The remaining 1550mm supports (ASTM D7401-08 (2008)). Boreholes were simulated
of the bolt encapsulation will provide limited to no effect in by 12 mm thick steel tubes with an internal diameter of 34.5
bonding the Yield-Lok bolt to the mixed resin. mm. The steel tube preparation included a slight roughening
In short encapsulation pull testing, the grip factor (bond of the inside surface over approximately the last metre. This
strength) and the system stiffness of the Yield-Lok bolt roughened section was referred to as the top of the tube where
yielding polymer coating mechanism can be calculated as the bolt is grouted with resin.
follows. Similar to rebar installation on site, the tube was first loaded
By modifying the upset diameter, the load versus with resin cartridges. A bolt of 1.8m length was then slowly
displacement can be adjusted to accommodate significant spun into the tube at a steady advancement rate. Once the bolt
movement in deforming ground. This can be utilised in potash reached the bottom, the advancement was stopped and the
or salt deposits which typically have large deformation values bolt was rotated at full speed (220 to 350 rpm) for an extra five
over relatively short periods. seconds to fully mix the resin.
Drop tests were conducted in the drop test rig of 3t capacity
and 2m height (Figure 3). As recommended in the ASTM
standard for dynamic tests (ASTM D7401-08 (2008)), a drop
weight of 1,115 kg and drop height of 1.5m were used to
produce the loading speed of 5.4 m/s and an input energy of
16.4 kJ. To study the maximum energy absorption capacity,
a weight of 2t and 1.5m drop height were tested to simulate
the energy input of 29.5 kJ and a weight of 3t and 1.5m drop
height were tested to simulate the input energy of 42.6 kJ.
Test results from standard energy input and various energy
inputs are summarised in Figure 4. As indicated, the bolts
consistently yield at around 200 mm displacement at 8t to 10t.
Most of the input dynamic energy (96%) is consumed when
the upset plows through the polymer, while only 3% to 4% of
the energy is consumed in steel elongation.

Yield-Lok bolt grip factor

Tonnes Force Encapsulation Grip factor
(kN) length (mm) (kN/mm)
14.5 142 750 .19
15 147 750 .20
15.5 152 750 .20
16 157 750 .21
16.5 162 750 .22
17 167 750 .22

Yield-Lok bolt system stiffness

kN start kN end Change in Change System
deformation in stiffness
(mm) force (kN/
(kN) mm)
Bolt 1 20 137 9.2 117 12.7
Bolt 2 20 137 7.9 117 14.8
Bolt 3 20 137 8.1 117 14.4
Bolt 4 20 137 9.6 117 12.2
Bolt 5 20 137 9.9 117 11.8
Bolt 6 20 137 7.4 117 15.8
Bolt 7 20 137 7.1 117 16.5
Bolt 8 20 137 9.6 117 12.2
Bolt 9 20 137 7.5 117 15.6

Bolt 10 20 137 10.0 117 11.7 Figure 3: Drop tests

Mining World | Volume 10 | Issue 2 | April 2013 33


Typical test results are presented in Figure 5. On the left is

the autopsy of polymer encapsulation after testing, while the
right is the load versus displacement curve of the bolt from
each drop test. As can be seen, the vibration frequency of the
curve is very consistent with the plough markings left in the
polymer after pulling the upset though it, which suggests the
yielding mechanism of the Yield-Lok bolt.

Current Yield-Lok projects

Mining companies currently evaluating Yield-Lok bolts
include Barrick Gold, Vale, Xstrata, Perilya and lightening
Nickel. Figure 6 shows encouraging Yield-Lok performance,
adjacent to rebar bolts that failed in tension.

Figure 4: Test results [1] ASTM D7401-08 (2008) Standard Test Methods for
Laboratory Determination Of Rock Anchor Capacities
By Pull And Drop Tests.
[2] WIPO (2011) World Intellectual Property Organization,
Patent Publication No. WO201102879 on Yielding Bolt
and Assembly, viewed 24 November 2011, http://www patentscope/search/en/WO2011028790.
[3] Wu, Y. and Oldsen, J. (2010) Development of a new
yielding rock support Yield-Lok bolt, 44th U.S. Rock
Mechanics Symposium, June 2730, 2010, Salt Lake
City, Utah.

Jennmar overview
Jennmar is a global, family-owned company,
and since 1972 it has focused on developing
and manufacturing ground control products
and technology for the mining, tunnelling and
civil construction industries. Today it makes a
broad range of products, from bolts and beams,
to channels and trusses, resin and rebar. The
company says were proud to make products
that make the industries we serve safer and more
efficient. And with more than 20 manufacturing
plants around the world, we are uniquely
positioned to react to ground control needs
anywhere, anytime.
Figure 5: Typical test results The companys network of affiliates includes
engineering services, resin and rolled steel
manufacturing, custom steel fabrication, chemical
roof support and sealing products, and even
includes its own trucking company. This ability
to provide a complete range of complementary
products and services ensures efficiency and
availability resulting in reduced costs and lead
Jennmar says its focus is on its customers; it
sums the foundation of the business up with three
words: safety, service and innovation.

Figure 6: Yield-Lok performance

34 Mining World | Volume 10 | Issue 2 | April 2013