Underground marble quarrying
The demand for decorative stones is growing constantly due to its utilization in modern architecture. Increased demand has led to an intensification of quarrying at existing marble quarries. A direct impact of these developments is the gradual exhaustion of surface deposits. In addition, strict new environmental restrictions have imposed the underground exploitation of decorative stone deposits.
Recognizing the problem, the European Union established a 36-month long research program, during the period 1999-2001, with the participation of academic institutions and mining corporations for the development of an integrated planning and programming methodology for underground marble quarrying.
The industry partners who participated in the program were:

• Dionyssomarboe Co. S.A. (Coordinator)

• Cooperativa Condomini Lavoratori dei Beni Sociali di Levigliani s.c.r.l. (CCLL) - Italy
• Lasa Marmo SpA - Italy

And the following academic partners:
• National Institute of Industrial Ecology and Hazards (INERIS) / Nancy University - France
• Turin Polytechnic, Dept. of Mineral Resources (POLITO) / Turin - Italy
• Technical University of Berlin (TU Berlin) / Berlin - Germany
• Centre for Rock Mechanics and Geotechnology (CNR) / Rome – Italy
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