Engineering Geology - Principles and Practice
460 pág.

Engineering Geology - Principles and Practice

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David George Price
Engineering Geology
Principles and Practice
With 182 Figures and 54 Tables
Principles and Practice
Engineering Geology
David George Price
Edited and Compiled
by M. H. de Freitas
Dr. Michael H. de Freitas
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Imperial College London
South Kensington
London SW7 2AZ, United Kingdom
Dr. Michael H. de Freitas (Imperial College London, United Kingdom)
Dr. H. Robert G. K. Hack (ITC, The Netherlands)
Ian E. Higginbottom (Wimpey Laboratories London, United Kingdom)
Prof. Sir John L. Knill (deceased) (Imperial College London, United Kingdom)
Dr. Michiel Maurenbrecher (TU Delft, The Netherlands)
David George Price (deceased)
ISBN: 978-3-540-29249-4
Library of Congress Control Number: 2008937486
© 2009 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg
This work is subject to copyright. All rights are reserved, whether the whole or part of the material
is concerned, specifically the rights of translation, reprinting, reuse of illustrations, recitations, broadcasting,
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Typesetting: Uwe Imbrock, Stasch · Verlagsservice, Bayreuth (
Production: Agata Oelschläger
Printed on acid-free paper 30/2132/AO \u2013 5 4 3 2 1 0
To Valerie
Cover Picture
Here we see the front end, or head, of a tunnel boring machine stripped down to its essentials and
awaiting these before assembly to its tail. Its design and construction illustrates the need for engi-
neering geology. To the left is the cutting head, carrying discs to match and overcome the strength of
the rock to be encountered \u2013 in this case strong rock is the anticipated material, hence the discs. They
are mounted on a strong cutting head designed to both rotate and carry the thrust required to load
the discs against the rock, so they may grind and crush the rock to bore the tunnel. That head is largely
unprotected for the hole it will bore will not collapse; it is predicted that the rock mass will be self
supporting. Thus no tunnel lining segments will need to be placed behind the head and so there will
be no structure against which the cutting head can react to generate its forward thrust. For this rea-
son the machine has been given lateral pads (one is facing the viewer) to extend and press against
the tunnel wall, so anchoring the head whilst its forward facing jacks press the cutter and its discs
against the tunnel face. The rock mass is predicted to be stiff, deforming little under these lateral loads;
it could not anchor the machine if it were not so. No lining also implies no ground water; this is pre-
dicted to be a dry tunnel. Space has been left in the lower third of the head; this will be occupied by a
conveyor that will carry the debris from the cutting head up through the machine where it will dis-
charge into a transporting system (another conveyor or train or trucks) to be carried out of the tun-
nel; a stable range of fragment sizes is predicted from the comminution at the tunnel face. At some
stage in the design of this machine an engineering geologist has had to advise on the geology of the
materials to be encountered, the structure, stiffness and stability of the mass in which they are con-
tained, the presence of ground water and the likelihood of it draining to the tunnel, the response of
the ground to loading by disc cutters, the response of the ground to unloading as the bore proceeds,
the disposal of the cuttings and the danger to personnel that rock dust from the tunnel face, and gas-
ses from the surrounding ground, may generate. Insurers and Health and Safety legislation may re-
quire these variables to be the subject of risk analyses. If the tunnel is to pass under urban areas then
noise and vibration of tunnelling must also be predicted for the loads and advance rates that are re-
quired. Radiation of acoustic waves, the sort when strong enough that will be heard and felt at ground
level, is usually anisotropic and requires ground structure to be understood. Hundreds of thousands
of tons of broken rock may come from the excavation, some may be suitable for concrete aggregate
and used elsewhere in the project, the bulk may be used for embankments leading to and from the
tunnel itself, or for reclaiming land elsewhere; all these decisions involve input from engineering ge-
ology. Finally, the road on which the machine is parked is a small cutting; that cutting will get larger
as the hillside into which the tunnel will bore is approached until a rock face is exposed into which
the tunnel may start boring. This is the tunnel portal and invariably it has to penetrate landslides
that cloak the surface of the slope through which it cuts without disturbing the slope or the develop-
ments that may be founded upon it. All this and more is engineering geology.
David Price had written the greater part of this book by the time he died; it has been
completed by his colleagues as a tribute to the many contributions he made to the
subject of engineering geology through his professional and academic life.
David graduated from the University of Wales in 1954 with the degree of Geology
with Mathematics and Physics, joined the Overseas Division of the Geological Survey
and was despatched to what was then British Guiana, to map economic mineral reserves
and construction materials. He returned to the UK in 1958 to join the construction
company George Wimpey. The post-war boom was beginning and David was engaged
as an engineering geologist. In those days industry appreciated the need for research,
as little was known for the tasks that had to be completed, and David joined a remarkable
group of scientists and engineers at Wimpey\u2019s Central Laboratory at Hayes; the young
reader can best visualise this as an \u201dindustrial university\u201d. At that time formal education
and training in engineering geology did not exist and as David recalled \u201d\u2026 no one really
knew what they were doing; we followed the principles of our subject, used common sense,
learnt from what happened on site and talked to those who seemed to know more than
we on the subject in hand.\u201d It was David\u2019s generation that established \u201dEngineering
Geology\u201d, as we now know it, in the UK and he played a full part in its foundation.
In 1975 David was appointed to the Chair of Engineering Geology at the Technical
University of Delft. There he witnessed both the academic growth of the subject and
the portents of its demise, for by the time he retired, in 1993, David could see that
university funding would threaten the teaching of his subject. It was time to write the
book that had long been his intention; a text that set out simply and clearly \u201d\u2026 what
engineering geology is about and how it\u2019s done\u201d and to do so uncluttered by theory and
equation, which were to be used only to illustrate the information required from the
field for design and analyses; a book for those new to the subject, based on his lifetime\u2019s
experience as a practicing engineering geologist, and on his view of the priorities for
its practice.
David started writing the work in the summer of 1995 but died shortly before his
text was finished. He agreed it should be completed by his colleagues