Last modified on July 13, 2016, at 19:56

Surface mine

Surface mines are mines for material which is near the surface. There are two major types of surface mines; these are contour mines and open pit mines.

Contour mining is conducted on hillsides where layers of the desired material are accessible. The overburden (material on top) is removed and the wanted material mined, then the overburden material is replaced.
Open pit mining is simply the excavation of the overburden, and removal of the wanted material. The result is a large open pit. In some parts of the world, including the United Kingdom, this method is known as open cast mining.

In recent times the mining companies are required to replace excess materials and replant vegetation so little trace of the mining remains.

One material which is surface mined is coal.

See also


  •, by Charles Kubach [1]