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Compressed air tunnelling - determination of air requirement

  • Stephan Semprich
  • Yannick Scheid
  • Jens Gattermann
Chapter

Abstract

In shallow tunnelling below the groundwater table compressed air can be used for preventing water inflow into the tunnel. When using this method air loss takes place through both the unsupported tunnel face and shrinkage cracks of the shotcrete lining. Until today it has been very difficult to correctly estimate the amount of air loss during the design phase of a project, although it could be a significant factor concerning the total costs of the tunnel construction. For solving this problem the multi-phase flow in the soil above the tunnel has to be considered. The aim of the project was to develop a new approach, based on existing design principles and unsaturated soil constitutive models. At the Institute for Soil Mechanics and Foundation Engineering in Graz, large scale laboratory tests were conducted to simulate the air-permeability of the shotcrete lining and the soil. Additionally, the experimental data are compared with results of numerical models. The models are based on existing constitutive laws to describe the mechanical behaviour of unsaturated soils. In this contribution results of the tests are discussed and a methodology is presented to estimate the amount of air loss during tunnel advance.

Keywords

Capillary Pressure Water Saturation Crack Width Unsaturated Soil Tunnel Face 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stephan Semprich
    • 1
  • Yannick Scheid
    • 1
  • Jens Gattermann
    • 2
  1. 1.Institute for Soil Mechanics and Foundation EngineeringGraz University of TechnologyAustria
  2. 2.Ed. Züblin AGChina

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