Robust planning for an open-pit mining problem under ore-grade uncertainty

Guido Lagos, Daniel Espinoza, Eduardo Moreno, Jorge Amaya

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Open-pit mining production planning is a risky problem: operation costs are considerable, many parameters are inherently subject to uncertainty and, moreover, the mining operation can only be done once. In this work we address uncertainty in the ore-grade, where we only assume the availability of an i.i.d. sample of the joint distribution of ore-grade in the blocks of the mining site. We consider an open-pit mining problem involving extraction and processing decisions under capacity constraints. We apply and compare the risk-hedging performance of three approaches for optimization under uncertainty: Value-at-Risk, Conditional Value-at-Risk and a proposed robust optimization approach. The latter is shown to have desirable risk-averse properties. Computational results on one small size vein-type mine are shown.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15-20
Number of pages6
JournalElectronic Notes in Discrete Mathematics
Issue numberC
StatePublished - 1 Aug 2011


  • Open-pit mining
  • Risk-averse optimization
  • Robust Optimization


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