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Tuesday, 22 April 2014

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Bertha TBM Won't Resume Drilling Until March 2015 [2014-04-22 08:52:14]  recommend  recommend this post  (8 visits) info

Seattle Tunnel Partners released a new schedule this week for the repair of the damaged seals on the Bertha Tunnel Boring Machine. This revised schedule shows that the TBM won't be digging again until March of 2015. The excavation of the pit to access the TBM will begin at the end of May, a delay caused by additional archaeological work. By October they hope to have the cutterhead removed to conduct the repairs, and the machine will undergo testing in February of 2015 with tunneling resuming in [...]

Repair of Earthquake Damaged Concrete Bridge Piers with PileMedic [2014-04-22 08:49:07]  recommend  recommend this post  (5 visits) info
[Source: YouTube. Image:

Two Geoprofessional Among 2014 Recipients of Grade of Distinguished Member of ASCE [2014-04-22 08:34:17]  recommend  recommend this post  (5 visits) info

Two well-known geoprofessionals were among the eleven given ASCE's highest honor this year, the title of Distinguished Member. Jean-Louis Briaud and Thomas D. O'Rourke were both in this year's class. There is a link to their bios in the ASCE blog post. Congratulations to both gentlemen, very well deserved. [Source: ASCE Roundup. Image: Texas

Conceptual Plan for Excavation to Repair Bertha TBM [2014-04-10 08:28:59]  recommend  recommend this post  (8 visits) info
Seattle Tunnel Partners has released a conceptual plan showing what the excavation of the pit will look like to repair the damaged Bertha Tunnel Boring Machine. See below. A pit 120 feet deep and 83 feet in diameter will be excavated so that the TBM can be driven into the pit and the cutterhead removed. Crews will then repair the seal system around the main bearing. [Source: WSDOT, Image Credit: Seattle Tunnel Partners and Brierly Associates by way of

Developer To Pay Building Owner $3.2 Million For Damage Related to Shoring [2014-04-10 08:12:18]  recommend  recommend this post  (3 visits) info

A developer will pay $3.2 million in damages plus $3.9 million in legal fees and expenses to the owner of a property that sustained structural damage related to the shoring of the developer's adjacent 17 story apartment building in Bethesda, Maryland. Apparently the developer settled with the owner regarding the damages 4 days before trial in December of 2013. The details of the settlement were released in a court order last week that was associated with a hard-fought battle over the legal [...]

Foundation Drilling Starts for Deck to Be Built Over NY Rail Yard [2014-04-10 07:56:34]  recommend  recommend this post  (3 visits) info

I love how the Atlantic Cities article starts, they use the phrase "only in New York", which is very appropriate in this case! Foundation drilling has commenced for a project that will create 26 acres of developable space by creating a deck over the top of a Long Island Rail Yard serving America's busiest train station, Penn Station. Over 300 drilled shafts extending 90 feet down to bedrock will be constructed to support a continuous concrete deck that will span over the entire rail [...]

Oso Landslide Update [2014-04-03 15:36:35]  recommend  recommend this post  (40 visits) info

The Oso Landslide death toll is now up to 29. This is one of the worst natural hazard disasters I can remember in recent times. First and foremost I think should be the memories of the victims. There are so many heart-wrenching stories of the people that lost their lives in this giant landslide. I think those stories underscore the importance of the jobs of geologists and engineers. We have a responsibility to protect life and property in the work that we do. I'm not saying this landslide or [...]

8.2 Magnitude Earthquake off Coast of Chile, Triggers Tsunami Warnings [2014-04-02 08:25:58]  recommend  recommend this post  (21 visits) info

A magnitude 8.2 earthquake struck off the coast of Chile late Tuesday. The damage estimates will probably begin rolling in today, but early indications are that it could have been much worse. Some 5 people have been killed in the early figures. There have been reports of landslides and disruption of communication facilities. A tsunami warning was triggered, and there are warnings of high water levels and strong currents impacting Hawaii, but so far no reports of a major tsunami along the [...]

Tragic mudslide in Washington kills at least 8 [2014-03-24 08:25:40]  recommend  recommend this post  (12 visits) info

A massive mudslide occurred on Saturday in Snohomish County, about 30 miles north northeast of Seattle, east of Arlington in the town of Oso. It has killed 8 people and at least 12 are still missing. 30 homes were destroyed and a mile long stretch of HIghway 530 is buried under approximately 20 feet of mud and debris. Rescuers initially heard voices of survivors, but have not heard any voices since Saturday night. My heart goes out to the families of the victims. We will have more details as [...]

Hayward Baker working on sinkhole problem at Corvette Museum [2014-03-20 22:45:33]  recommend  recommend this post  (38 visits) info
I heard that Hayward Baker was working on the Corvette Museum sinkhole at GeoCongress, but I finally got official confirmation via this Civil Engineering Magazine article. It's a great article if you are interested in the engineering that's been going on since the sinkhole collapsed and swallowed 8 Corvettes. So far, Hayward Baker has installed 23 micropiles around the structure to depths of 75 to 220 feet depth according to the article. They are still trying to recover the remaining cars [...]

Plan for Bertha Repair Submitted, Archaeological Surveys Underway [2014-03-20 22:20:06]  recommend  recommend this post  (38 visits) info
Seattle Tunnel Partners and WSDOT are moving forward with the plans to excavate a 120 foot deep shaft to repair the Bertha Tunnel Boring Machine. Unfortunately, there are archaeological issues since the project team did not clear the area where the shaft will be excavated. A series of 4-inch boreholes 20 to 40 feet deep (I wonder what drilling method, sonic?) will be performed under the supervision of the archaeologists to look for culturally significant items. The top of Bertha sits [...]

Changes in Management for Geobrugg North America, LLC [2014-03-16 22:28:11]  recommend  recommend this post  (159 visits) info

GEOBRUGG NORTH AMERICA, LLC: ERIK J. ROREM assumes new position of Business Development Manager; PIERCE RUNNELS, PE takes over as General Manager Algodones, New Mexico USA – March 3, 2014. Geobrugg AG, Switzerland, the world leader in natural hazard protection systems, is pleased to announce the appointment of Erik J. Rorem as new Business Development Manager for North America. His current position of General Manager, Geobrugg North America, LLC will be assumed by Pierce Runnels, PE. [...]

Keynetix Looking for Beta Partners for Civil 3D Extension [2014-03-16 16:21:36]  recommend  recommend this post  (7 visits) info
Keynetix is looking for beta partners to help with ideas for visualizing geotechnical data in the HoleBASE SI Extension for AutoCad Civil 3D. They want to be able to graphically display down hole XYZ information such as CPT plots, sample locations, contamination levels, water levels, etc. Follow the link for more information and to contact Keynetix. [Source: Click for more info from Keynetix. Image:

Mizzou Memorial Union Gets Lift from TerraThane Geotechnical Foam [2014-03-12 06:31:45]  recommend  recommend this post  (228 visits) info

Univ. of Missouri’s Historic Memorial Union, Built to Honor WWI Dead, Gets New Life with TerraThane Geotechnical Foam MOUNT AIRY, NC—The Univ. of Missouri’s iconic Memorial Union, with its Gothic architecture and central bell tower, was built to commemorate the 117 Mizzou alumni who lost their lives in WWI, and has been under silent attack. Like all buildings built atop the ancient dry riverbeds of the tributary valleys of the Missouri River, the soil beneath is a mixture of [...]

Upcoming Keynetix Webinars On Geotechnical, Environmental and GIS Data [2014-03-11 23:32:31]  recommend  recommend this post  (8 visits) info
Keynetix had over 350 people tune in to webinars offered in January of this year. And they have recently announced 4 more webinars coming up in the next several weeks. The topics of the webinars include: Mar 14th - Only do it once! - Your guide to efficient geotechnical data entry Mar 21st - Triggering Vision - Making best use of your environmental data in HoleBASE SI Mar 28th - Avoiding AGS data errors - The 5 most important things you need to know Apr 4th - Creating [...]

5 of 8 Corvettes Rescued from Sinkhole [2014-03-11 23:31:57]  recommend  recommend this post  (15 visits) info
Here is an update on the Corvette Museum Sinkhole. A contractor has been busy trying to extract some of the priceless Corvettes from the sinkhole that opened up under the museum floor. If you missed the videos of this sinkhole, you have to check it out.They have successfully removed 5 of the cars. They have been put on display in another part of the museum, with sinkhole mud still on them. But it sounds as if General Motors will be stepping in to help restore them. A video below gives more [...]

Radar survey of Egypt's Valley of the Kings opens up new possibilities for lost tomb finds [2014-03-10 07:33:51]  recommend  recommend this post  (28 visits) info

A radar survey of Egypt's Valley of the Kings hopes to find some of the missing tombs of Egyptian Queens and Pharaohs that have so far eluded archaeologists. Distinguishing natural faults and other geologic features from potential tombs is one challenge. The article also describes how some other interesting discoveries have been made, including an ancient flood control system that prevented the tombs from being flooded, but rapidly fell into disrepair. [Source: Livescience. Image:

APE Pile Driving and Helical Pile Introduction Video [2014-03-10 07:14:38]  recommend  recommend this post  (30 visits) info

I met a gentleman from American Pile driving Equipment, or APE, on the plane on my way to the GeoCongress conference. We spent some time chatting, and we visited at the trade show at the conference too. I've mentioned APE on GeoPrac before, you might remember the 'Octakong' pile driving hammer, made of of 8 individual but synchronized hammers used to drive 72' diameter piles for the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Seaway project. I was impressed with a helical pile system they have developed that can be [...]

Video: The Opposite of Safety On a Drill Rig [2014-03-07 11:14:44]  recommend  recommend this post  (18 visits) info
Ok, this video has so many safety issues going on, you can't even count them all. But it is darn funny! Just know that this public video on Facebook lets anyone comment on it, so be warned. [Source: Facebook. Image:

Additional Tests Boost KeyLAB’s Appeal [2014-03-06 14:20:21]  recommend  recommend this post  (39 visits) info
Over the last 18 months Peter Keeton has been heading up a team at Keynetix to write British Standard and ASTM Standard compliant test definitions, laboratory worksheets and reports for KeyLAB. This work has now been included free of charge with the latest installer of KeyLAB and enables new users of the software to be operational much quicker than ever before. Peter Keeton has over 40 years of experience working in and managing geotechnical laboratories for Soil Mechanics and was an [...] | Impressum