Transport & Infrastructure
Transport groundworks are heavily reliant on Geotechnical Engineers. These engineers can affect the design, maintenance, and construction of important infrastructures such as roads, highways, and railways. It takes a great deal of skill and knowledge to properly assess and plan for future maintenance and longevity. When building transport gateways, Geotechnical Engineers needs to consider how to protect these constructions further from landslides, foundations, or bridges, flooding, and more.
Dams have a dramatic effect on ecosystems of the surrounding area, and it is important to correctly assess how they will change the environment for preservation and conservation. These are a large-scale construction and require an assessment of everything connecting to its function, such as lake and riverbeds, shorelines, and surrounding ecosystems.
Landfills are dangerous areas both for the public and the environment and must be developed appropriately to minimise risk and contamination. Landfills contain many different types of solid waste, such as industrial agriculture, and household waste. As these can be accessed by the public to remove household waste, regulation of accepted materials is harder to uphold. This waste can contain harmful chemicals, pesticides, and biological compounds, which without the proper infrastructure to contain them, can damage environmental and public health. Geotechnical Engineers design specialist systems for separating these elements that ensure they are disposed of responsibly.
Contamination occurs when harmful or foreign substances penetrate the site’s environment. A Geotechnical Engineer will be called to advise on the best course of action. There are multiple methods at their disposal to remove contaminated soil, such as soil stabilisation and chemical oxidation. These processes convert contaminated soils into non-hazardous soils to make the earth suitable for development.
Deep excavations may be the automatic assumption when considering the role of Geotechnical Engineers. They are vital in ensuring the stability of digging sites and deep excavations. These operations are vital to the construction of underground railways, roads, and drainage and processes have been developed to make it easier to allow deep excavation in urban places.
Landslides threaten public safety and are a risk to infrastructure and transport routes. These are particularly dangerous in busy areas and on major roads. Geotechnical Engineers can assess and provide reports on the likelihood of risks and what can be done to ensure public safety.
All buildings have foundations that ensure they can stand properly and safely on the ground without the risk of sinkage. As the earth moves consistently, the buildings need to be able to withstand the tectonic and environmental shifts, this is particularly important for high rises.
There are many large and famous underground structures across the world and Geotechnical Engineers are heavily involved in the design and construction of these, such as tunnels, subways, and underground facilities. These are imperative constructions for the infrastructure and efficient running of urban areas, railways, waterways, and waste storage.
Ground Improvement & Soil Stabilisation
Soil is not just soil but contains many different elements and properties depending on where it is in the world, and often these properties make the substance unsuitable for construction. Physics and chemistry are used to modify this subsurface so it can support civil infrastructure.
Scour and Erosion
Weather, sea, and other factors contribute to the erosion of the natural landscape, threatening civil infrastructure. Dramatic weather can quickly change the landscape beyond that of as little as the previous generation. Construction is often implemented to reduce the effects of erosion and is commonly seen in coastal areas.