Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

The dynamics of rocky inclines

22.11.2005


It is common to see banks or inclines on the roadside or at the side of railway cuttings. They are formed when a side of a mountain or other earth feature is cut through for the construction of various infrastructure. As they are unstable zones, many problems are created and, in the case of the Basque Country, the problems are aggravated by a number of factors: the complex orographic terrain, the high rainfall and the area being abundant in sedimentary material.



Risk and consequences

Instabilities arise on rocky banks due to the geomechanical features of the rocky mass, because of the state of conservation of the slope itself, and due to the conditions of water penetration.


Once the movement of rocks has started, the key factor in the movement is the inclination of the bank. Also, the size of the incline influences the probability of rock falls. Why? Because the higher and longer the slope, the greater the rock mass under risk of rock fall and, in the case of a landslide occurring, greater will be the damage done.

It should be taken into account that some locations have the material of the banks pointing directly towards the road or railway, due to the fact that it had this orientation originally within the rock mass. In other cases, the rocks are pointing in another direction and so do not present such a risk and any rock fall will probably not reach the road or the rail tracks.

Corrective measures

The aim of all these geotechnic measures is to identify, control and correct elements that might be unstable. To do this it is necessary to establish protocols or programmes of action. By means of these programmes, the improvements that may be obtained with corrective measures are evaluated and the problems registered thus resolved.

Concretely, the group of hydrogeology-geotechnics at the University of the Basque Country has developed a programme based on 10 parameters: classification of rocks (classification undertaken for the rock masses in the Basque Country), orientation of cracks, hydraulic conditions, facility of meteorisation of the rocks, history of the incline or bank, volume of the unstable blocks/mass, the height of the bank, the likelihood of the rocks reaching the road, the distance of vision vs. the distance of reaction and the importance of the road. Through these parameters, the stability of the rocky bank and the damage from a rock fall estimated. Thus, 8 classes of rock are differentiated and information provided on the features and behaviour of the bank.

Finally, corrective measures are proposed for each type of rock. Amongst these measures is the use of steel bars as tensors, covering the slope with concrete, placing dynamic nets to catch the rocks, etc. In the last analysis, the aim of all these studies is to propose suitable corrective measures for each case and, thus, to minimise risks.

Garazi Andonegi | alfa
Further information:
http://www.basqueresearch.com

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht New Study Will Help Find the Best Locations for Thermal Power Stations in Iceland
19.01.2017 | University of Gothenburg

nachricht Water - as the underlying driver of the Earth’s carbon cycle
17.01.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Biogeochemie

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Helmholtz International Fellow Award for Sarah Amalia Teichmann

20.01.2017 | Awards Funding

An innovative high-performance material: biofibers made from green lacewing silk

20.01.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ion treatments for cardiac arrhythmia — Non-invasive alternative to catheter-based surgery

20.01.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>