Open Pit Slope Design

Areas of Study: Geotechnics

Qualifies for CMS

Short Course Short Course
  • Audience Level: Professional Tool Tip
  • Dates: Unscheduled Tool Tip
  • Early Bird: Tool Tip
  • Enrollment: Included Tool Tip
  • Registration Fee: Tool Tip
  • Location: Lima, Peru Tool Tip
  • Duration: 2 days
  • CEUs: 1.6 (16 PDHs) Tool Tip

Course Summary

This course will be presented in English with simultaneous Spanish interpretation. For Spanish web pages for this course click here Spanish.

This course is one of a series of six Professional Development in Mining courses to be held in Lima between May 27 and June 1. Other courses in the series include the following.

These courses are presented by Edumine in collaboration with PUCP and made possible by the support of Compañía Minera Antamina S.A..

Pontifical Catholic University of Peru (PUCP) Antamina


This course presents an overview of the design process for open pit slopes. The first day of the course begins with a description and review of the fundamentals of slope design and then progresses from field data collection and QA/QC techniques through to the development of the individual component models that are used to define the geotechnical model. The second day of the course explores different slope design methods and considerations, and presents typical slope monitoring and management techniques to evaluate the behavior and performance of the applied slope designs, and finishes with a discussion on best practices for optimization of the slope designs.

Specific examples of the various processes, analyses, design assessments and interpretation of monitoring data will be presented and discussed throughout the course.

Pre-Course e-Learning

Prior to the course, registered delegates have access to the online e-learning material consisting of two introductory courses in English, titled Guidelines for Open Pit Slope Design 1 - Fundamentals and Data Collection and Guidelines for Open Pit Slope Design 2 - Modelling.

Certificate in Mining Studies

This course qualifies for two days of short course credit for the Certificate in Mining Studies (CMS), a continuing education program of accredited short courses, webcasts and online courses for lifelong learning in mining, supported by University of British Columbia, University of Arizona and University of Concepción. more details »

Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

Registered participants who attend the entire short course and complete an evaluation at the end of the course will receive a Certificate of Attendance, confirming the Professional Development Hours (PDH)/Continuing Education Units (CEU) earned. Please confirm with your employer and/or professional association that this course qualifies for CPD.

Who Should Attend?

This course is aimed at geologists, mining and geological engineers and technicians, and any other professionals involved in the process of data collection, design, monitoring and ongoing management of open pit slopes who wish to expand their understanding of the fundamentals and considerations in open pit slope design. This is not a detailed design course, but attendees should have a basic background in rock mechanics and experience in feasibility stage projects or operating open pit mines.

Michael Scholz

M. Scholz received a Bachelor of Applied Science (1997) and a Master of Engineering (2002) in geological engineering from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada. He joined Piteau Associates in Vancouver in 1997, and in 2010 relocated to Peru where he is currently the Engineering Manager for Piteau's Lima office. He has over 15 years of practical experience working on numerous soil and rock mechanics projects and groundwater studies in Canada, the USA, South America, Southeast Asia and South Africa. He has conducted a variety of geotechnical and hydrogeological studies, analyses, design investigations and modeling for open pit mining projects, waste dumps and earthworks stability, from scoping-level to detailed design and optimization. He specializes in the analysis of laboratory testing and geotechnical/geomechanical data, rock mass strength assessments, photogrammetric mapping, structural fabric model development, bench and interramp kinematic assessments, slope monitoring data analysis, rockfall and runout analyses, and detailed 2D/3D limit equilibrium and numerical modeling assessments of overall slope stability and deformation. Mr. Scholz is also involved in the development of in-house software and utilities related to kinematic analyses, slope deformation monitoring and numerical modeling.

Felipe Capdeville-Perez

Felipe Capdeville-Perez obtained a bachelor's degree in Engineering Sciences in 2004 and a Mining Engineer degree in 2007 from the Universidad de Santiago de Chile. He has seven years' experience in rock mechanics and mining geomechanics. Following graduation, he worked on several underground and open pit projects in Chile, including Codelco's Andina and Chuquicamata Divisions and BHP Billiton's Cerro Colorado mine, and provided photogrammetry training for several mines in Chile. He moved to Vancouver, Canada in 2007 to join Golder Associates Ltd., where he carried out geotechnical field programs and geotechnical slope design studies for several projects located in Canada and the USA, including the Highland Valley Copper, Endako, Gibraltar, Mc Clean Lake and Red Dog mines, and the Carmacks Copper Project. In 2009, he joined Piteau Associates becoming involved in a wide variety of mining projects, including Teck's Highland Valley Copper mine in Canada, Barrick's Goldstrike mine in Nevada and Pascua Lama project in Chile, Ecuacorriente's Mirador project in Ecuador, the Collahuasi mine in Chile, and Southern Copper's Toquepala mine in Peru.

Provisional Schedule

Instruction will take place from 9:00am to 5:30pm each day, with a lunch break from 12.30pm to 1:30pm and 30 minute snack breaks in mid-morning and mid-afternoon.

The course includes the following topics:

Fundamentals of Slope Design

  • Introduction
  • Terminology of Slope Design
  • Slope Design Process
  • Design Implementation
  • Performance Evaluation and Monitoring

Data Collection and QA/QC

  • Introduction
  • Mapping Techniques
  • Core Drilling and Logging
  • Sample Collection and Testing
  • Quality Assurance and Quality Control (QA/QC)
  • Data Management

Modeling, Techniques and Calibration

  • Introduction
  • Geological Model
  • Structural Model
  • Rock Mass Model
  • Hydrogeological Model
  • Geotechnical Model

Slope Design Methods

  • Introduction
  • Slope Design Considerations
  • Design Sectors
  • Empirical Design
  • Kinematic Analysis
  • Limit Equilibrium
  • Numerical Modeling
  • Stability / Acceptance Criteria

Monitoring Techniques

  • Introduction
  • Types of Monitoring Systems
  • Monitoring Program
  • Results and Presentation
  • Interpretation
  • Survey Error
  • Imprism (Piteau System)

Optimization of Slope Design - Best Practices

  • Introduction
  • Data Collection and Models Update
  • Monitoring
  • Documentation and Back-Analysis

How to Register

Complete and return the registration form by fax: 604 681 4166 or email: [email protected].

If you have any questions you can contact Edumine by phone at +1 604 683 2037 or send an email to [email protected].


The full fee for the two day program is USD 1,600 + 18% tax. The fee covers the lecture in English with simultaneous Spanish translation, a comprehensive set of course notes, access to pre-course e-learning, a certificate of attendance, and buffet lunches including light refreshments. The fee does not cover accommodation.

Early Bird: there is a 10% discount if you register and submit payment at least 30 days before the course start date.


The course will be held at Hotel Novotel Lima. Detailed arrival instructions, including a map, will be sent to all participants 10-14 days prior to the commencement of the course.

Hotel Accommodation

If you need to make hotel reservations, we recommend the Hotel Novotel Lima. Strategically located in San Isidro, adjacent to the city's largest business district, the hotel offers a complete package of accommodation, food and drink, events and entertainment. For more details, see the Hotel Novotel Lima website.

For further information about hotels in Lima, see

Terms and Conditions

By submitting a short course registration form, you agree to pay the associated fees in full before the course start date.


Notice of cancellation must be given in writing by letter, fax or email and action will be taken to recover, from the delegates or their employers, that portion of the fee owing at the time of cancellation.

A 10% administration fee will be levied for cancellations made 4 or more weeks prior to the first day of the course. Thereafter, the following cancellation refund schedule will apply.

  • Cancellation made more than 3 weeks prior to the first day of the short course: 70% of the registration fee is reimbursed.
  • Cancellation made more than 2 weeks prior to the first day of the short course: 50% of the registration fee is reimbursed.
  • Cancellation made less than 2 weeks prior to the first day of the short course: no reimbursement of registration fees.

Edumine reserves the right to cancel an advertised course on short notice. It will endeavour to provide participants with as much notice as possible, but will not accept liability for costs incurred by participants or their organisations as a result of the course being cancelled or postponed. If a course is cancelled, fees will be refunded in full. Edumine also reserves the right to postpone or make such alterations to the content of a course as may be necessary.