A new model for open-pit production and waste-dump scheduling

Zhao Fu, Mohammad Waqar Ali Asad, Erkan Topal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


An open-pit mine schedule defines the optimal sequence of mining valuable (ore) and waste material with the objective of maximizing the value of the project. Given this production schedule, a waste-dump schedule is then developed to determine the optimal waste-rock allocation in waste dumps. Thus, production and waste-dump schedules are managed separately, which leads to an inappropriate consideration of the material haulage cost, suboptimal schedules generating less value, and the incorrect classification of ore and waste. This article proposes a mixed-integer programming-based model that determines the optimal production and waste-rock dumping schedule concurrently with the objective of maximizing the discounted cash flow [net present value (NPV)] of the project. An implementation of the proposed model on a gold-mining operation outperforms the two existing methods [traditional and two-step mixed-integer programming (TSMIP) model] in the context of project NPV as well as its practicality.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
JournalEngineering Optimization
Publication statusAccepted/In press - Jun 8 2018


  • mine waste management
  • mixed-integer programming
  • open-pit mining
  • Operations Research in natural resources
  • production scheduling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Management Science and Operations Research
  • Control and Optimization
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
  • Applied Mathematics

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