Greg O'Rourke - Engenium - Integrating engineering geology into corridor earthworks to improve efficiency and productivity
 

Greg O'Rourke - Engenium - Integrating engineering geology into corridor earthworks to improve efficiency and productivity

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Greg O'Rourke delivered the presentation at the 2014 Heavy Haul Rail Conference. ...

Greg O'Rourke delivered the presentation at the 2014 Heavy Haul Rail Conference.

The 2014 Heavy Haul Rail Conference had a focus on driving efficiency with smarter technology. Australasia’s only heavy haul rail event is the annual meeting place for professionals interested in the latest projects, technologies and innovation in this dynamic sector.

For more information about the event, please visit: http://bit.ly/hhroz14

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Greg O'Rourke - Engenium - Integrating engineering geology into corridor earthworks to improve efficiency and productivity Greg O'Rourke - Engenium - Integrating engineering geology into corridor earthworks to improve efficiency and productivity Presentation Transcript

  • Integrating Engineering Geology Into Corridor Earthworks to Improve Efficiency & Productivity Greg O’Rourke, Executive Director - Rail
  • This presentation has been produced in cooperation with 4DGeotechnics
  • This presentation will:  Explain how using engineering geological techniques will add value to any corridor project  Provide examples of lost value opportunities  Explain why “hard information” often comes too late to impact positively on a project Introduction
  • Engineering geology is the application of the geologic sciences to engineering practice for the purpose of assuring that the geological factors affecting the location, design, construction, operation and maintenance of engineering works are recognised and adequately provided for. What is Engineering Geology?
  •  The below track component of the railway (earthworks) normally represents the most variable component of the fixed infrastructure.  It is normally built out of natural materials on and in a natural geological setting.  Because it is variable it often presents the most engineering risk.  Understanding the geology therefore allows us to predict likely issues and therefore manage this risk from an early stage of the project. Why is this important?
  • Conditions of a site are the product of the history of the site. Therefore understanding the geology allows early anticipation of site ground conditions and likely engineering performance. Total Geology Concepts
  • Typical Land Surface
  •  Anticipation of ground conditions leading to: – informed corridor selection – Locking in value – Less surprises – Targeted geotechnical investigation – Collected data on a corridor, not an alignment. What are the benefits of adopting this approach early?
  • Geological Knowledge Framework 100% 50% Desk Study Mapping Ground Breaking Investigations Supplementary Ground Breaking Investigations Construction Dependent on Approvals Biggest decisions on alignment are made before ground disturbance
  • Alternative Often Typical Approach… Designated by the Blue Line 100% 50% Desk Study Mapping Ground Breaking Investigations Supplementary Ground Breaking Investigations Construction Biggest decisions – little information Main information gathering commences here A lot of information gathering occurs here – Surprises!
  • Recommended approach is:  Introduce engineering geological principals early  Initially use available information for initial route selection  Then site inspection followed by detailed mapping Total Geology Approach (Typical)
  • Total Geology Approach (Typical)
  •  Identification of geohazards  Route optimisation and identification of construction materials  Corridor can be selected  Subsurface investigation Total Geology Approach (Typical)
  •  Develop reference conditions  Apply the observational method Total geology approach (continued)
  • An Example Looking for the line of least resistance
  • The same alignment using published data
  • Same alignment with aerial photography
  • Same alignment with geological mapping Cut through Rock requires drill and blast Likely poor foundation conditions Potential borrow areas Potential borrow areas
  • Use this information to reduce risk and cost Alignment moved to avoid poor foundations, reduce drill and blast and take advantage of an abundance of good borrow materials
  • Using Traditional method  Select alignment based on topography  When able to, approvals allowing, test pit or drill  Depending on where targets are chosen, may discover unfavourable conditions’  No real knowledge on where to move it. Findings
  • Lang Hancock Railway Train Loadout Bridge Site
  • Lang Hancock Railway Bridge replaced with culverts at design stage Void below surface discovered during construction
  •  Once hard investigatory information is available corridor is already locked in.  If problems are only discovered when drilling and testpitting occurs, often too late to do much about it.  Any changes are likely to require further investigation – expensive and time consuming – or gaps in information are presented to contractors, leading to potential latent conditions claims.  Generally more expensive than a total geology approach without really managing risk properly. Problems arising from not taking a total geology approach
  • Adopting total geology approach:  Provides the right information at the right time  Enables informed decision making (eg corridor selection)  Enables risk management to occur, including anticipation of geohazards and the like.  Provides information to enabling a cost effective site investigation to take place  Allows changes to be anticipated and modifications to be made with minimal disruption  Engineers and geologists working together to ensure beneficial outcomes for all. Conclusions
  • John Kennedy and Ian Lewis from 4DG Acknowledgements