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About is a community of practitioners of geotechnical engineering, geological engineering, engineering geology, geophysics, hydrogeology and related disciplines. We offer members and visitors the foremost collection of geo-related articles, news, and online resources to keep those geo-professionals in practice at the forefront of their respective fields.

Nicholson Completes Emergency Work on Indiana's I-65
GeoNews - Press Releases
Written by Randy Post   
Monday, 23 November 2015 05:25

Nicholson Construction stabilizes pier on I-65 using micropiles and low-mobility groutingPITTSBURGH, PA – Nicholson Construction recently completed emergency repair work to an unstable pier supporting a bridge on INDOT’s Interstate 65. These repairs enabled a 37-mile section of the highway’s northbound lanes to be reopened after a four-week closure.

The highway was in the process of being rehabilitated and widened when the pier was damaged by steel piles driven into the water tight ground below it. The pier began to settle and eventually rotated ten inches.

Nicholson developed a design-build solution that used micropiles to transfer the loads to more stable soils and low-mobility grouting to fill voids and densify the upper subsurface layer.

[Editor] Read on to hear more about Nicholson’s fix of this unstable bridge pier. [/Editor]

Last Updated on Monday, 23 November 2015 05:43
Kleinfelder CEO Resigns, Interim CEO Kevin Pottmeyer Takes Reigns as Company Looks to Accelerate 2020 Strategic Direction Initiatives
GeoNews - Press Releases
Written by Randy Post   
Monday, 23 November 2015 05:38

Kevin Pottmeyer, new interim CEO of KleinfelderSAN DIEGO, California – Kleinfelder announced that President and Chief Executive Officer Bill Siegel has resigned, effective immediately, to pursue other interests. The Board of Directors has appointed Kevin Pottmeyer as interim CEO while the Board of Director’s conducts a search for a new Chief Executive Officer.

“Bill has accomplished a great deal for our company in his time with us,” says Rodger Johnson chair of Kleinfelder’s Board of Directors. “We thank him for his commitment, service and leadership.”

Siegel adds, “I’m proud of the progress we’ve made in the last 7 years to transform our business. We are at a point in the lifecycle of the company to take our business to the next level and deliver on our 2020 objectives. I greatly value the relationships and experiences realized over my nearly 30 years with the firm and look forward to applying this experience to the next chapters in my professional career and life.”

In the interim, Kevin Pottmeyer, Senior Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer, will lead the company during the transition. Pottmeyer says, “We are financially strong and leading the engineering consulting market in many areas of our business. As we work through this transition, I will continue our focus on meeting current year goals, work with the executive team to prepare our FY17 plan and help lead the search committee for our next Kleinfelder CEO. We will begin immediately to identify CEO candidates and expects to hire a new leader as soon as practically possible.

[Editor] Click through for more about Kleinfelder [/Editor]

Last Updated on Monday, 23 November 2015 05:42
Terracon Acquires NORCAL, Strengthens West Coast Presence
GeoNews - Press Releases
Written by Randy Post   
Monday, 23 November 2015 05:29

Terracon acquires NORCAL Geophysical ConsultantsOLATHE, Kan. – Terracon, a leading provider of environmental, facilities, geotechnical, and materials engineering services, is pleased to announce the acquisition of NORCAL Geophysical Consultants, Inc. of Sonoma County, Calif. Terracon is retaining NORCAL’s 11 employees.

Founded in 1983, NORCAL offers geophysical technologies in support of geologic, groundwater, environmental, and engineering investigations. NORCAL’s capabilities, including their unique geophysical expertise, complement Terracon’s existing services and broaden the service offerings for clients across the country.

[Editor] Click through for the rest of the press release from Terracon [/Editor]

Last Updated on Monday, 23 November 2015 05:41
Moretrench President Arthur B. Corwin, P.E. to Receive Moles Member Award
GeoNews - Press Releases
Written by Randy Post   
Wednesday, 18 November 2015 07:22

Moretrench President and CEO Arthur B. CorwinMoretrench is very pleased to announce that company President and CEO Arthur B. Corwin, P.E. has been recognized by his fellow Moles with the 2016 Member Award for Outstanding Achievement in Construction, the organization’s top honor. The presentation will take place at the annual awards dinner to be held on January 27, 2016 at the New York Hilton.

Mr. Corwin joined specialty geotechnical contractor Moretrench in 1978 and has dedicated his entire career to the growth of the company, serving in various engineering and executive capacities including Chief Engineer, Executive Vice President, and Chief Operating Officer. He was elected to the Board of Directors in 1988, appointed President and Chief Operating Officer in 2003, Chief Executive Officer in 2007, and Chairman of the Board in 2010.

In addition to providing the dynamic leadership that has placed Moretrench in the forefront of the industry, Mr. Corwin is Treasurer of the General Contractors Association of New York , serves on the Board of Associated Construction Contractors of New Jersey, and sits on the Industrial Advisory Committee at Columbia University.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 18 November 2015 07:24
Tetra Tech to buy Australian Geotechnical Engineering firm Coffey
GeoNews - Comings and Goings
Written by Randy Post   
Thursday, 12 November 2015 23:03

Tetra Tech

Tetra Tech will buy Australia-based geotechnical engineering firm Coffey Geotechnics for $0.31 per share. The move is expected to strengthen Tetra Tech's presence in Australia. Tetra Tech currently employs 13,000 staff globally, and Coffey a reported 3,300 globally. [Source: Image: Tetra Tech]

Last Updated on Wednesday, 18 November 2015 07:23
Bertha Tunneling to Resume 1 Month Later Than Planned
GeoNews - Project Related
Written by Randy Post   
Thursday, 12 November 2015 22:47
The Bertha TBM after most of the repairs were completed

The Seattle Tunnel Partners JV announced last month that tunneling on the Alaska Way Viaduct Replacement project will resume a month later than originally planned. The Bertha TBM will resume mining on December 23 after a unique repair operation involving an access shaft. The tunnel boring machine is currently undergoing testing, and a jet grouting operation to tighten up the ground in advance of the TBM was undertaken last month. [Source: More at WSDOT Alaskan Way Viaduct Page. Image: WSDOT Flickr]

Golder Innovates for Subway Line in Stockholm
GeoNews - Project Related
Written by Randy Post   
Monday, 02 November 2015 23:31
Braced excavation for Stockholm's City Line project

Golder was the geotechnical designer for two of the most challenging segments of the Stockholm City Line in Sweden. Their work included foundation improvements for a tunnel beneath a historic portion of Stockholm, 3D modeling of rock mass deformations, and development of a specialty software for City officials to monitor the large data sets being gathered for the project, including settlements, ground water levels, vibrations, and more. [Source: Read more about this interesting project from Golder Associates. Image: Nicklas Wijkmark]

Movie About Dramatic Drilling and Rescue of 33 Chilean Miners
GeoNews - Miscellaneous
Written by Randy Post   
Thursday, 29 October 2015 01:34

This is pretty cool! It's not every day that you have a major Hollywood motion picture that features drillers as the unlikely heroes! The movie 'The 33" stars some big names like Antonio Banderas, Lou Diamond Phillips, and James Brolin as the driller extraordinaire, Jeff Hart. If you missed this story, check out the GeoPrac article I wrote about the Drillers, Rigs, Rock and Hart of the Chile Mine Rescue. [Source: YouTube. Image: YouTube]

Last Updated on Thursday, 29 October 2015 08:36
How Could a Pile of Dirt Cause a Major Interstate Bridge To Tilt?
Articles - Forensics and Failures
Written by Dennis M. O'Shea   
Tuesday, 20 October 2015 07:25

On June 2, 2014, the Delaware Department of Transportation closed a bridge on I–495 that was leaning and out of plumb.[Editor] The Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT) had a major problem on their hands after a bridge on I-495 was leaning…one side of the bridge was 18 inches higher than the other.  The culprit?  A pile of fill adjacent to the bridge was loading soft soils beneath.  So what do you do about it?  In this contributed article by Dennis M. O’Shea, bridge engineer in the FHWA Delaware Division Office, he describes the problems faced by DelDOT, the causes, and how they fixed it.  The article originally appeared in Public Roads Magazine, and is republished here with permission. [/Editor]

Last Updated on Wednesday, 21 October 2015 05:47
Protestors Cause Geotechnical Work to Shutdown for Sydney WestConnex Project
GeoNews - Project Related
Written by Randy Post   
Monday, 05 October 2015 23:34
Protestors of the proposed WestConnex project

Police were called out to one geotechnical investigation site in metro Sydney, Australia last week after residents unhappy with the proposed WestConnex project entered the work site. The crew abandoned drilling tools and equipment on the site, an apartment complex. WestConnex geotechnical contractors canceled another planned investigation as well based on the public reaction. Residents of the apartments were notified in advance of the work, and WestConnex indicated that the proper permission for drilling had been obtained from property owners and/or apartment complex management. But there is clearly a very vocal group of opponents to the project that would link the congested M4 motorway to Sydney Airport and Botany Bay. [Source: Read more about the protests in the Daily Telegraph. Image: Daily Telegraph]

Site Characterization Services: Step 3 Field Exploration
GeoNews - Available Resources
Written by Randy Post   
Monday, 05 October 2015 23:32

Another in the series of excellent videos by Terracon. This video addresses the field exploration techniques they use. [Source: Terracon YouTube Channel. Image: YouTube]

Last Updated on Tuesday, 06 October 2015 06:34
Terzaghi's Birthday 2015 and Growing Pains of a New Profession
GeoNews - Available Resources
Written by Randy Post   
Friday, 02 October 2015 05:44

Happy Karl Terzaghi's Birthday!Today is the anniversary of Karl Terzaghi's birthday. I have a tradition of marking the anniversary by sharing a quote or some other piece of info I've learned about the man we commonly refer to as the father of soil mechanics and geotechnical engineering. This year I marked the occasion a day early by arranging for geotechnical engineers in my office of Golder Associates to watch a video over our lunch hour by The GBA from 1988 of a presentation given by Ralph Peck entitled "Growing Pains of a New Profession - Soil Mechanics 1925-1940".

It's always remarkable to me to think that we are only one generation, or at most two, removed from the men like Terzaghi that developed the theories and practices that form the foundation for our profession. Although Peck's presentation did not focus on Terzaghi entirely, he did note that in his opinion, there were three factors that marked the transition to what we know as modern soil mechanics in the United States.


The first of these was Terzaghi's establishment of the principles of the new science: the mathematical theory of consolidation and the acompanying recognition of effective stress, the deformation conditions controlling earth pressure, and the determination of numerical values for the pertinent physical properties of earth materials.


Peck discusses the contributions of many other names, some that I had heard of, a number that I wasn't as familiar with, and talks about some of the controversies, personality clashes and egos in the early soil mechanics community.  I recommend the video, or at least Peck's paper, to anyone interested in geotechnical engineering.  If your firm is a GBA member, you can get either for free (just create a free login at the GBA homepage, instructions for getting the video for free on Vimeo are listed in the description of the video).  Happy KTB everyone!

Last Updated on Friday, 02 October 2015 06:09
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