The following four short courses will be taught by Prof. Pinnaduwa Kulatilake in Tucson, Arizona in May 2016 as given below. Dr. Kulatilake was one of my professors at the University of Arizona during my geological engineering program. If you have always been meaning to learn some rock mechanics to add to your geotechnical skill set, these courses would be a very good option.
The Redi-Rock Design Resource Manual or DRM has everything you would need to design a Redi-Rock retaining wall, including block sizes, design charts, construction details, and setback options. The manual also includes case studies and an installation guide and more. Watch the video below for more info. Download the updated manual or request a printed version at http://www.redi-rock.com/drm/ .
This is some very interesting first-person video of a landslide near Elk City, Idaho, complete with expletives. :) I can't say I blame the videographer, it's not every day you see a slope like that come down. Must have been quite an experience to be there! [Source: YouTube. Image: YouTube]
Taiwanese investigators have arrested the developer of a 17-story apartment building that collapsed in an earthquake at the beginning of the month. Approximately 40 people were killed when the building collapsed, there were only two other deaths in the entire city. The charges are suspicion of criminal business misconduct resulting in fatalities. Mainland China has been notorious for shoddy construction practices, and those practices have been blamed for the death of thousands in Sichuan Province during the 2008 earthquake. [Source: The New York Times via Geoengineer.org. Image: Anthony Wallace/Agence France-Presse â€” Getty Images via NY Times]
Fugro released their 2015 Fiscal Year results, and the headline is 'Strong cash flow in continuing challenging oil and gas market'. The Dutch company's biggest market sector is oil and gas, and they are forecasting continued challenges this year with over-supply. The numbers show a drop in revenue of 17 percent from 2014 to 2015. Among the ways they managed the downturn is to sell or lease back two of their geotechnical drilling vessels, but they are also focusing on growing other market sectors and opportunities in all geographic regions. [Source: Read the rest of the Fugro press release. Image: Fugro]
The New York DOT has been working on a geotechnical design manual (GDM) since at least 2012. It is a very detailed document that covers pretty much every possible geotechnical aspect of a transportation project. It would be a valuable resource for any geotechnical engineer. Some chapters are still marked draft, but I like their transparency about what has been officially approved by the DOT and what is still under review. [Source: Check out the GDM of the New York DOT. Image: NYDOT]
Keynetix is preparing to restart their popular free webinar series. The theme for 2016 is “Transforming Your Geotechnical Data Journey in Small Steps.” The webinars will be every Friday at 12 pm EST for North American Customers and those using ASTM standards, and Friday at 13:00 GMT for other customers using BS/AGS standards.
This Friday, February 12th, the webinar title will be “Maximize the Value of your Geotechnical Data Archive Using HoleBASE SI”. The format of the webinars will be 20 minutes with another 10 minutes of Q&A. Follow this link to register for the webinar. Keynetix is a sponsor of GeoPrac.net.
The folks at LogItEasy.com have put together a very useful, free online tool for converting Munsell color codes that you might use in the field into the actual color names. This functionality is also built into their interface for electronic field logging and log creation. [Source: Go check out the free Munsell Soil Color tool at LogItEasy.com. Image: Munsell.com]
This is my colleague Dimitrios Zekkos, Associate Professor at the University of Michigan, and the founder of Geoengineer.org. He's talking about his group's research involving utilizing drones after natural disasters. Cool stuff! [Source: University of Michigan MichEpedia YouTube Channel. Image: YouTube]
I saw this video a few weeks back on The Landslide Blog, and it's also been posted on GeoEngineer.org. It's well worth the watch. It's one of the scariest debris flow videos I've seen. Some hikers are crossing a channel cut naturally through old debris flow deposits, like a hiker bowling alley. Fortunately the guides hear it coming and everyone manages to get out of the channel before the latest debris flow roars through! [Source: YouTube via Dave's Landslide Blog. Image: YouTube]
The GAP rail-trail is 150 miles of hiking and biking between Cumberland, Md, and Pittsburgh, Pa. created along the former railway line. In Cumberland, the GAP joins the C&O Canal Towpath, creating a continuous 335-mile long trail experience all the way to Washington, DC. It’s become a favorite biking destination for people from around the Mid-Atlantic states. One of its main tunnels, the Pinkerton Tunnel, an 849-foot former Western Maryland Railway tunnel, has been closed since 1975 due to erosion and unstable conditions. The Allegheny Trail Alliance, the organization that built and now maintains the 150-mile GAP, and the Somerset County Rails-to-Trails Association (SCRTA), wanted the tunnel reopened and helped fund the project.
[Editor] Click through for the rest of the press release from GeoPrac sponsor, NCFI Polyurethanes (makers of TerraThane). [/Editor]
The New York MTA's East Side Access Tunnel Project is what I would refer to as a 'Mega Project'. Any time you're in the Billions of dollars range, I'd say that qualifies, and this one sits at $10.2 Billion! When completed, this project will at long last bring Long Island Rail Road trains to Grand Central Terminal. The photos by The Gothamist are worth spending a few minutes looking at. [Source: Check out the Photos at The Gothamist via @GannettFleming. Image: Jake Dobkin / Gothamist]