GeoPrac.net 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.
Imagine the scene 4,800 years ago when a rock avalanche nearly 2 km long buried much of the Zion Valley in a matter of 90 seconds, creating a dam on the Virgin River that flooded essentially the entire floor of the canyon that millions of visitors enjoy every year. The researchers that analyzed this event are in the Geohazards group of the University of Utah led by Dr. Jeff Moore. Dr. Moore happens to be an old classmate of mine from the geological engineering program at the University of Arizona. I didn't dig up the publication where this Zion Canyon research was written before it went viral, but there are some great figures posted on his website and I'm sure you can click around and find the citation if you are interested. [Source: YouTube via Geoengineer.org. Image: YouTube]
Roger Chandler of Keynetix was the State of the Practice lecturer at this year's Sowers Symposium at Georgia Tech to commemorate the life of George F. Sowers. Roger's lecture was titled 'Transforming Geotechnical Data' discussed the way different countries value geotechnical data. Keynetix is a sponsor of GeoPrac.net. [Source: Read more about the evening on the Keynetix website. Image: Keynetix]
The Swiss and many other European dignitaries celebrated the opening of the World's longest and deepest tunnel last week, the Gotthard Base Tunnel, after 17 years of construction. The tunnel beneath the Swiss Alps is 57-kilometers long (35-miles long) reaching a depth of 2,300 meters (7,545 feet, almost 1.5 miles). The tunnel will create a high-speed rail link between northern and southern Europe. Trains will travel the tunnel, which runs between the towns of Erstfeld in the north and Bodio in the south, in only 20 minutes, reaching speeds of up to 250 kilometers an hour (155 mph), according to CNN. [Source: CNN via AGC SmartBrief. Image: Global Rail News]
GeoPrac sponsor Nicholson Construction has started a chemical grouting project in Los Angeles at the Woodrow Wilson Classical High School to treat potentially liquefiable soils beneath the building. This $2 million project is part of a larger $21.1 million project to upgrade the infrastructure in the auditorium and adjacent areas. Nicholson will drill vertical, horizontal and inclined holes at depths of 14 to 24 feet beneath the structure and inject the chemical grout using a Tube-a-Manchette piping system. [Source: Read more about the project from Nicholson Construction. Image: Nicholson Construction]
,[Editor] From their video description: [/Editor] DeWind One-Pass Trenchers can install complete DEEP Groundwater Collection Trench Systems in a Single Pass Under the Groundwater Table! No Open Excavations-No Dewatering - No Pumping- No Treating discharge water- No Sheeting or Shoring- minimal spoils....Fast and Safe installs up to 50 below grade. [Source: YouTube. Image: YouTube]
Redditch, UK 17th May 2016 - Keynetix, developers of geotechnical BIM software, have appointed PacifiCAD as a Specialist Partner in the USA covering the North West. PacifiCAD are a leading Autodesk reseller. They have a wide wealth of industry knowledge, including specialisms in civil infrastructure utilising a team of seasoned Autodesk Certified Technical Professionals.
They supply their customers with unmatched technical support, implementation, data management and training to help them become more productive and competitive.
“PacifiCAD has been an Autodesk Gold Partner for 25 years, and is specialized in Infrastructure Solutions. We are very pleased to extend our solutions portfolio to include Keynetix’s HoleBASE SI for our geotechnical customers. This product provides a superior alternative to gINT and is fully integrated with AutoCAD Civil 3D” Bill Inman, President, PacifiCAD.
[Editor] Click through for the rest of the press release from GeoPrac.net sponsor Keynetix. [/Editor]
There is a new player in the ground engineering and specialty geotechnical construction market in North America...well, sort of. Quanta Subsurface is a collection of (at present) 9 specialty contractors all owned by Quanta Services, a publicly traded EPC company specializing in the Electric Power and Oil and Gas industries. Many of these companies have been around for some time in their various markets, firms like Crux Subsurface. With the formation of Quanta Subsurface, it appears that they are looking to grow their footprint in transmission line sector in particular. The company is being run by several Crux Subsurface executives, including Crux President Nick Salisbury. [Source: Read more at QuantaSubsurface. Image: Crux/Quanta Subsurface]
This is a pretty remarkable 4-year time-lapse video of the construction of a new spillway as part of the Calaveras Dam replacement project. [Source: SFWater Power and Sewer YouTube Channel via Hat tip to my buddy Wayne Harrison. Thanks, Wayne!. Image: YouTube]
ENR's annual top 500 design firms list is out. These rankings are based on revenue for design services in the previous calendar year. I was curious how the various firms that are strong in geotechnical / geological related services rank. I included firms that self-identified as geotechnical firms, as well as engineering firms that I know to have a strong geo emphasis. I'm sure there are some that I missed. I also included some of the major A&E firms that provide these types of services. I even included a few environmental firms. So in summary, it's still a bit subjective on who is included. Without further ado, here is the list (along with their change in ranking relative to 2015):
1 - AECOM, Los Angeles, Calif. (No change from 2015)
3 - CH2M, Englewood, Colo. (+1)
5 - AMEC FOSTER WHEELER, Tucker, Ga. (+1)
7 - TETRA TECH INC., Pasadena, Calif. (No change from 2015)
9 - HDR, Omaha, Neb. (No change from 2015)
11 - WSP | PARSONS BRINCKERHOFF, New York, N.Y. (+5)
12 - ARCADIS NORTH AMERICA/CALLISONRTKL, Highlands Ranch, Colo. (+1)
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After nearly a week of tunneling under the Alaskan Way Viaduct, crews are steadily continuing Bertha's underground drive towards downtown Seattle. This video gives you a behind-the-scenes glimpse into how the new tunnel is being built, showcasing the complex operations involved in this project. Massive concrete ring segments are transported to Bertha's segment erector where they are lifted into place, allowing the machine to push forward while the excavated soil is transported along a network of conveyer belts and into a barge moored at Elliott Bayâ€™s Pier 46.
The Deep Foundations Institute is accepting scholarships for undergraduate and graduate students in geotechnical engineering or foundation engineering at a U.S. college or university. The at-large scholarships range from 2,000 to 5,000. For more information and to apply, visit dfitrust.org. Hurry, the deadline is May 16! [Source: Deep Foundations Institute. Image: DFI]