Rockfall Barrier Behavior Under Multiple Impact Events

When a barrier is impacted by rocks, multiple components of the barrier are engaged to absorb the energy generated by the falling rocks. More often than not, rockfall events generate multiple rockfalls, that impact the barrier at different intervals. Rockfall barriers are generally very difficult to design considering that most information comes from few case histories, rigorous statistical analysis, and a knowledge of mechanical behavior of the barrier structure. With regard to the behavior of the barrier, the primary information available to the designer is provided by standard testing procedures like the ETAG 27, that defines a Maximum Energy Level (MEL) and Service Energy Level (SEL) capacity for the structure. The main question for the designer is: how does one correctly synthesize the data derived from geological and topographic surveys, the probabilistic analysis of the trajectories, and knowledge of barrier characteristics into the design? This paper outlines some practical recommendations, that help overcome the main uncertainties affecting design reliability, to foresee and compensate for installation problems, and reduce maintenance costs. The goal is optimization of rockfall barrier designs considering their Service Energy Level (SEL) and Maximum Energy Level (MEL), as well as their behavior in cases where multiple impacts occur. The selection of a Rockfall Fence Kit, designed in accordance with full scale crash tests (ETAG 027), is recommended in order to understand and incorporate the values of loads and deformations acting on and through the fence kit during impacts.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: Figures; Photos; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: pp 331-348
  • Monograph Title: Proceedings of the 64th Highway Geology Symposium (HGS 2013)

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01644038
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Aug 24 2017 9:46AM