New Initiative Modeled After Longstanding Bridge Program
WASHINGTON –The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) today published the final rule for national tunnel inspection standards that will serve as the foundation of the nation’s first standardized tunnel inspection program. It will be modeled after the FHWA’s successful bridge program established nearly a half-century ago to ensure the safety of the nation’s bridges.
“This important step to keep our nation’s tunnels safe for the traveling public is unprecedented,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “Establishing national standards will help us maintain a high level of quality and uniformity in tunnel inspections nationwide.”
[Editor] Read on for the rest of this press release from the US DOT. [/Editor]
After the 2011 Fukushima earthquake, the reactors at TEPCO's nuclear facility began leaking radioactive groundwater. The plan to contain the contamination is to use ground freezing to construct an "ice wall" to cutoff the flow. Acton, Massachusetts based Geocomp has been contracted by TEPCO to provide engineering services for the ground freezing. Geocomp has subcontracted specialty geotechnical contractor and GeoPrac sponsor Moretrench to provide their specialty ground freezing expertise as well. Moretrench is a world leader in the design and construction of ground freezing projects. The Geocomp newsletter (from a few months ago) noted that the report deliverables will need to be provided in English and Japanese.
The 2015 International Foundation Congress and Equipment Expo was held in San Antonio back in March of this year. The proceedings from IFCEE 2015 are now available online and for purchase at the ASCE Library. However, they are offering a selection of papers for free for a limited time, you just need to be registered with ASCE Library.You can register for free to get access if you haven’t already.
The Golder Foundation presented the first annual awards to six students in the fields of Ground Engineering and Contaminant Site Assessment and Cleanup. The cash awards, totaling $40,000 USD, are meant to encourage and recognize technical excellence in some of the areas that Golder practices in.
The Golder Foundation was created in 2013 and aims to further knowledge and learning by opening the technical archives of our founders and some senior staff; through sharing Golder's distinct ownership model and business legacy; and by granting these annual awards.
Hatch Mott MacDonald received the prestigious ACEC Grand Award at the 2015 Engineering Excellence Awards Gala on April 21. ACEC had this project description in their program:
More than six miles long and 43 feet in diameter, the new Niagara Tunnel is the largest renewable energy project in the world. Providing much-needed power for the city of Niagara Falls, it is located deep beneath the city and is more than one and a half times wider than the English Channel Tunnel.
Peter K. Robertson, Ph.D., P.Eng, Professor Emeritus, University of Alberta, Technical Advisor, Gregg Drilling & Testing Inc. is the 2015 recipient of the H. Bolton Seed Medal for outstanding contributions to teaching, research, or practice in geotechnical engineering. He presented his keynote lecture at the 2015 IFCEE Conference in San Antonio. The title of the presentation was Evaluation of Soil Liquefaction - How Far Have We Come in the Past 30 Years?
A professional river guide came under fire for a rafting trip through the site of the Oso landslide. Families of the victims issued a cease and desist order, but the trip happened anyway. Opponents of the trip likened it to taking a trip through a graveyard, that it was disrespectful to those that died in the tragedy. Others noted that places like the site of the Boston bombing and the World Trade Center did not get to become off limits after their tragedies. The guide said that it was his first and last trip to that site because of the low volume of water. [Source: Read more from Q13 FOX News. Image: Q13 Fox News]
NovoLIQ software by GeoPrac sponsor Novotech allows geotechnical engineers to perform soil liquefaction analysis. NovoLIQ covers several liquefaction triggering analysis including post liquefaction parameters and dry sand settlement. This program covers SPT, Vs and BPT and calculates factor of safety and many other analyses results. [Source: YouTube. Image: YouTube]
National Driller magazine had a nice article not to long ago interviewing Kord Wissman about his transition from consulting to contracting. Kord is the President of Geopier Foundation Company (owned by Tensar). He has some very interesting insights, it's worth the read. I admire Kord as well for his involvement with the Geo-Institute and the GBA, he is very generous with his time and talents, more of us should be like him! I think GBA members can listen to his 'Going to the Dark Side' presentation (which was the impetus for the interview) for free, check the GBA website. [Source: Read the interview at National Driller. Image: National Driller]