Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Geologists’ model reveals foundation flaws in bedrock under new urban centers

13.11.2002


Before developers decide to make the desert bloom, they better take a look at what’s under the surface of the Earth.



That’s the conclusion of research by Texas A&M University geologist Mohamed Aly, who’s using GIS (geographic information systems) techniques to conduct engineering geomorphology assessments of some of Egypt’s newest urban developments to predict - and thus avoid - foundation problems stemming from instabilities in the underlying bedrock.

The resulting GIS model may also be used to study similar new developments worldwide.


"For the past 50 years, the Egyptian government has encouraged the building of new cities in the desert, away from the Nile valley and its delta, where 96 percent of the Egyptian population lives," said Aly, a doctoral student in the Department of Geology and Geophysics of the College of Geosciences. "New Minia City is one of 16 developments being built in the desert over the last few years. It is still close to the Nile, from which it gets its drinking water and to Old Minia City, which supplies surface necessities.

"While New Minia City is in the early stages of construction, its planners wanted an assessment of any geo-environmental problems that might occur," he continued. "Our study revealed that some areas of proposed development were underlain by soft highly fractured and jointed limestone, which is prone to dissolution by acidic rainfall, creating sink holes and caves in the heterogeneous bedrock."

Other new Egyptian cities had not investigated their bedrock foundations before building, creating later problems and leading authorities to seek the advice of geologists like Aly, who, along with being a student in Texas, holds an assistant lecturer appointment at Zagazig University, Egypt.

Aly and advisers John Giardino, dean of graduate studies and professor of geology and geophysics, and Andrew Klein, professor in the geography department, developed a GIS model to assess New Minia City’s site risk, urban development suitability and land use potentials. Aly presented a paper on their model at this month’s annual meeting of the Geological Society of America.

GIS produces a digitally registered geographic database from data layers obtained from different sources, such as satellite remote sensing and seismic ground testing. Aly’s model system used data layers including geology, land use/cover, soil types, karst distribution, fracture density, slope, stream ordering, roads and administrative boundaries.

"Our GIS model, which was found to be effective at revealing the foundation bedrock problems, was adopted locally to assess the area’s main geo-environmental problems threatening urban development of New Minia City," Aly said.

"We hope the model will provide a good base for informed decision-making in support of integrated sustainable development for New Minia City, allowing more geologically unstable areas to be used for agriculture or parks, instead of for housing or other structures. Finally, we recommend our GIS model be used not only for this city, but also for new cities with similar geologic and geomorphologic settings across the world."


###
Contact: Judith White, 979-845-4664, jw@univrel.tamu.edu; Mohamed Aly, 979-862-9153, aly@tamu.edu.


Judith White | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.tamu.edu/

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht "Flight recorder" of rocks within the Earth’s crust
16.04.2019 | Universität Bern

nachricht More than 90% of glacier volume in the Alps could be lost by 2100
09.04.2019 | European Geosciences Union

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Explosion on Jupiter-sized star 10 times more powerful than ever seen on our sun

A stellar flare 10 times more powerful than anything seen on our sun has burst from an ultracool star almost the same size as Jupiter

  • Coolest and smallest star to produce a superflare found
  • Star is a tenth of the radius of our Sun
  • Researchers led by University of Warwick could only see...

Im Focus: Quantum simulation more stable than expected

A localization phenomenon boosts the accuracy of solving quantum many-body problems with quantum computers which are otherwise challenging for conventional computers. This brings such digital quantum simulation within reach on quantum devices available today.

Quantum computers promise to solve certain computational problems exponentially faster than any classical machine. “A particularly promising application is the...

Im Focus: Largest, fastest array of microscopic 'traffic cops' for optical communications

The technology could revolutionize how information travels through data centers and artificial intelligence networks

Engineers at the University of California, Berkeley have built a new photonic switch that can control the direction of light passing through optical fibers...

Im Focus: A long-distance relationship in femtoseconds

Physicists observe how electron-hole pairs drift apart at ultrafast speed, but still remain strongly bound.

Modern electronics relies on ultrafast charge motion on ever shorter length scales. Physicists from Regensburg and Gothenburg have now succeeded in resolving a...

Im Focus: Researchers 3D print metamaterials with novel optical properties

Engineers create novel optical devices, including a moth eye-inspired omnidirectional microwave antenna

A team of engineers at Tufts University has developed a series of 3D printed metamaterials with unique microwave or optical properties that go beyond what is...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Revered mathematicians and computer scientists converge with 200 young researchers in Heidelberg!

17.04.2019 | Event News

First dust conference in the Central Asian part of the earth’s dust belt

15.04.2019 | Event News

Fraunhofer FHR at the IEEE Radar Conference 2019 in Boston, USA

09.04.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

New automated biological-sample analysis systems to accelerate disease detection

18.04.2019 | Life Sciences

Explosion on Jupiter-sized star 10 times more powerful than ever seen on our sun

18.04.2019 | Physics and Astronomy

New eDNA technology used to quickly assess coral reefs

18.04.2019 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>