Analyses and Design of the Highly Jointed Slopes on the Abutments of the World’s Highest Railway Bridge Across the Chenab River in Jammu and Kashmir State, India
Indian Railways have embarked on the construction of world’s highest railway bridge as a part of Udhampur–Srinagar–Baramulla Rail Link Project, a major infrastructure project in India. The bridge is being constructed across the river Chenab. The bridge consists of a main span of 467 m arch bridge on the steep slopes on the banks of the river Chenab. The bridge is about 359 m above the high flood level of the Chenab River. The bridge is located in highly seismic area characterized with maximum credible earthquake with a peak horizontal acceleration of 0.36 g. Considering the iconic nature of the bridge and highly jointed rock mass, a variety of tests were conducted to assess bearing capacity of the foundations and stability of the slopes. Continuum analyses using Slide and FLAC softwares were carried out. The slopes were also checked for wedge failure and toppling failure considering the joint characteristics. The slope stabilization measures against wedge failure consist of using passive rock bolts and active prestressed rock anchors. The methodology for the design of these rock bolts and prestressed rock anchors for wedge failures is described briefly. The slopes have been successfully stabilized using the methodology discussed in this paper.