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The Arizona DOT and their contractor have begun blasting and earthwork to realign a portion of US 89 in northern Arizona near Page that was cut off by a large landslide in February of 2013. The massive blasting and excavation operation to push back the slope above the road will generate around 1 million cubic yards of material which will be used to construct a massive buttress at the toe of the slide. Check out the video below. [Source: ADOT YouTube Channel. Image: YouTube]
Scientists from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, CA used their Uninhabited Aerial Vehicle Synthetic Aperture Radar (UAVSAR) technology to collect repeat measurements of the Napa Valley area to accurately map ground deformations from the August 24, 2014 earthquake. The special autopilot developed by NASA allows the C-20A aircraft to fly within 30 feet of its previous flight line surveys to collect high-resolution radar data. The data can be processed using interferrometric techniques to generate INSAR images that will tell geologists, engineers, seismologists, and planners how much movement occurred, including in soft sediment areas near the North Bay Aqueduct. [Source: NASA. Image: NASA Armstrong]
Providing geotechnical drilling parameters such as thrust, rotation, rate of penetration, and flush pressure will soon be incorporated into European Standard EN22574-15 and is already in BS5930. Having these parameters available gives geotechnical engineers another tool in the toolbox to characterize the subsurface. But I am not familiar with any drilling companies here in the US that can record and report this type of data. Does anyone use this technology in their practice? What kind of equipment is required on the drill rig to collect this data? Leave a comment, or tweet @geoprac. [Source: New Civil Engineer Ground Engineering news via Geotechnical Data Hub on LinkedIn. Image: ocarc.ca]
Hawthorne, NJ (August 21, 2014): S. Scot Litke, D.GE (Hon.) is the recipient of DFI’s highest award to an individual, the Distinguished Service Award. He is the 34th recipient of the award, honoring individuals chosen by their peers for exceptionally valuable contributions to the advancement of the deep foundations industry. The award will be presented on October 23, 2014, during DFI’s 39th Annual Conference in Atlanta.
Since 1982, Litke has been the editor of the ADSC’s (International Association of Foundation Drilling) Foundation Drilling magazine. He also held the position of Executive Director of the ADSC from 1982 to 2009. During this time, Litke managed over 25 drilled foundation and anchored earth retention research projects funded by the ADSC and FHWA. Litke was inducted into ADSC’s Hall of Fame in 2012.
[Editor] Click through for the rest of the press release from DFI [/Editor]
Hayward Baker (HB) recently began work on a $9.1 million ground improvement contract for the K-10 South Lawrence Trafficway (SLT) Project located in Lawrence, Kan. as a subcontractor to Emery Sapp & Sons, Inc. The project provides a significantly improved transportation infrastructure for the state, making it a top priority for the Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT).
Current construction will complete the southern K-10 bypass from its intersection with US 59 to the existing K-10 east of Lawrence. Construction affects 58 acres of wetlands. However, mitigation agreements between KDOT, local government agencies, and the public will create and restore 317 acres of wetlands as well as restore, preserve, and create over 50 acres of habitats.
[Editor] Click through for the rest of the press release from GeoPrac sponsor Hayward Baker. [/Editor]
Norcross, GA – August, 2014 – Dataforensics proud to announce a major update to its Rapid CPT Software.
The new version of Rapid CPT (version 4.2) drastically improves performance. Depending on the dataset, the processing time is typically reduced by 80-95%. This is particularly important for customers with large datasets consisting of a hundred or more soundings where processing time previously took 3-4 hours which has been reduced to 10-15 minutes. Additionally, a new Cloud based licensing process eliminates the previous dongle based licensing which not only helps improve performance but makes it easier to deploy RAPID CPT across an organization. Lastly, Dataforensics has added an importer to support the Stratigraphics CPT format. This provides users who obtain data in the Stratigraphics format a simple single step import (like all other RAPID CPT importers) instead of manually manipulating the Stratigraphics Excel format to get it loaded into the system.
“Cone Penetration Testing (CPT) provides engineers with large amounts of data for analysis. Converting the raw data (usually a text file) to something useful that can be analyzed and reported is a tedious and cumbersome process. It requires significant amounts of manual data manipulation (moving, copying and pasting) and is prone to human error. Furthermore, the engineer must then manually calculate numerous parameters and correlations for follow-on design and analysis. Dataforensics CPT interpretation software, Rapid CPT, eliminates all manual data manipulation, providing a more complete and accurate interpretation of results, faster and easier than ever before.”
Dataforensics is a leader in deploying software applications that serve as core components for data and personnel management within geotechnical and geoenvironmental engineering. Our solutions enable efficient, timely and accurate assessments. The resulting assessments are used to support analysis and design activities by the engineering and construction industries, as well as federal, state and local government organizations. For more information, please visit www.dataforensics.net
The giant straddle cranes that load and unload cargo from the container ships at the Port of Oakland apply a fairly concentrated load along their wheel path. Over time, the wheel path area has settled, creating a hazard to crane operators, cargo, and all port workers. URETEK ICR and their affiliate EagleLIFT were called in to use their patented geopolymer technology to stabilize and lift the subgrade, restoring the wheel path to it's original elevation. Check out the video! URETEK ICR is a sponsor of GeoPrac.
What are the top geotechnical engineering schools in the United States? I don't know how accurate or scientific this list is, but a quick glance tells me they definitely got many of the most well-known programs. Their list was based on the top Civil Engineering Programs (according to US News and World Report) that also offer geotechnical engineering programs. I doubt the person who compiled this knows much about geotech. But if you are a student researching where to go get a MS in geotech, this list is a good place to start. Anyone care to comment? [Source: Read the List of Top Geotechnical Engineeering Programs at Education Portal via @URETEKHoldings. Image: University of Wyoming (not on the list, sorry Cowboys)]
Early Sunday morning, a 6.0 Magnitude earthquake struck near Napa California lasting 10 to 20 seconds, sending 120 people to the hospital and damaging buildings, breaking water mains, disrupting power distribution, and breaking gas lines and causing fires. The earthquake was the largest to strike the Bay Area since the 1989 Loma Prieta Earthquake. I will provide more info relevant to geoengineers in the coming days. If you find any interesting info, leave a comment, or email or tweet it to me (@geoprac). [Source: Read more at the LA Times. Image: Rick Loomis / Los Angeles Times]
There hasn’t been much to report recently for the Alaskan Way Viaduct Tunnel Project in Seattle. As you probably know, Bertha has not advanced since about December of 2013 after drilling through an abandoned steel well casing left over from engineering studies. Whether it was the casing or boulders, or something else that damaged the seals around the giant TBM’s cutterhead, they have some major repair planned. If you like, feel free to read more about what happened with Bertha.
WSDOT and Seattle Tunnel Partners JV (STP) announced a conceptual repair plan back in April. It involves creating a vertical access shaft approximately 80 feet in diameter, and 120 feet deep. STP member Malcolm Drilling is currently working on constructing I believe 5-ft diameter secant shafts to form the perimeter of the access shaft. The work is progressing a little slower than expected. The initial schedule issued by STP had the secant shaft wall complete at the end of July. It is now supposed to be the end of August, although they have said this won’t affect the overall repair schedule. You can watch a time lapse video of the access pit construction…pretty cool.
Another interesting item I found recently is a discussion of the cranes that will be needed to repair the bertha cutterhead. If you read my post on the tour I took of Bertha at her launch pit, you might have noticed a huge gantry crane in my photos that lifted components of the TBM into the launch pit for assembly. They will be constructing something similar at the repair site. However, first they need to assemble a 300-ton crawler crane beginning in September. The 300-ton crane will help assemble a 600-ton crawler crane. The 600-ton crawler crane will then help assemble the 2,000-ton modular lift tower (what looks like a gantry crane to my untrained eye). Talk about a heavy equipment ballet!