Unsaturated Soils and Ground Movement Control in Deep Excavations and Tunnelling

Published 10 May 2010
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Unsaturated Soils and Ground Movement Control in Deep Excavations and Tunnelling

This short course comprises two topics.

Unsaturated Soils

The course presents a summary of modern unsaturated soil mechanics. It introduces the fundamental concepts required for describing the behaviour of unsaturated soils followed by an account of the main features of their mechanical and hydraulic behaviour. A conceptual framework for a more integrated understanding of unsaturated soil behaviour is then presented. A number of case histories are described to illustrate the applications to engineering practice.

Ground movement control in deep excavations and tunnelling

The course reviews the generation of ground movements arising in deep excavations and in tunnelling as well as the methods available for their control and mitigation. The different control measures are described with emphasis on their range of applicability and on their limitations. In addition, the potential relationship between large ground movements and stability is examined. The lecture is organized around a number of case histories involving both deep excavations and tunnelling works.


Antonio Gens graduated from the Technical University of Madrid and he obtained a M.Sc. and a Ph.D. degree from Imperial College in London. He is a professor of Geotechnical Engineering at the Technical University of Catalonia in Barcelona where he has been Head of the Department of Geotechnical Engineering and Geosciences and member of the Governing Council of the University. He has been involved in geotechnical research, consulting and education for more than 25 years. His main research topics have been in the fi elds of numerical analysis of geotechnical problems, constitutive modelling of soils, study of soil behaviour by laboratory testing and behaviour of partially saturated soils. He has consulted widely in projects involving deep excavations, tunnels, harbour quays and breakwaters, ground improvement techniques, dams, power stations, foundations, slope stability, site investigations and radioactive waste disposal. He has been awarded, by the UK Institution of Civil Engineers, the Telford Medal (twice) and the George Stephenson Medal and the R.M. Quigley award by the Canadian Geotechnical Society. He is a member of the Royal Academy of Doctors of Spain and in 2007 he delivered the 47th Rankine Lecture.

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