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The use of physical modelling in urban civil engineering design work


Complex situations of interaction between soil and the many structures, which encompass "Urban Civil Engineering" need to be modelled to investigate the behaviour of the whole system and to ensure a safe design. These investigations may include e.g. calculations of the soil deformation due to either new construction or to a construction process carried out on neighbouring buildings, the interaction between the new structure and the soil, or environmental influences. Numerical modelling is appropriate for most investigations if the behaviour of the soil and the influence of the structure can be idealised sufficiently. However, physical modelling of the whole system, or at least of some idealised aspects of the soil structure interaction (SSI), is essential for some investigations. In this paper, some examples will be given to demonstrate the necessity of physical modelling of the SSI. The importance of the boundary conditions selected and the interaction between physical modelling and numerical modelling will be described and discussed. Developments in the use of the physical modelling will be presented, concerning shallow foundations, bridge abutments, and excavations for deep basements and tunnels.


Laue, Jan and Springman, Sarah M.

Index Terms:

Soil; SoilGroup

Further Information:

Date published: 2002