- Cutting roadways “headings” in the form of tunnels out into the area to be mined.
- These tunnels or roadways are driven in pairs which are joined every 130m by roadways between them called cut-through’s.
- These roadways in the underground workings fill several requirements including:
- Transport roads for machine access in and out of the mine
- Conveyor roadways that contain the conveyors that transport the coal to the surface after it has been mined.
- These roadways also provide access for power, services and most importantly, ventilation which provides clean, breathable air to coal mine workers while they work at the coal face.
The development mining is the process of building these roadways for the future development of the mine; it is a critical task as it allows for the infrastructure and services to be installed for the extraction of the coal seam by Longwall.