ENGINEERING CLASSIFICATION OF ROCK MASSES FOR THE DESIGN OF TUNNEL SUPPORT

An analysis of some 200 tunnel case records has revealed a useful correlation between the amount and type of permanent support and the rock mass quality q, with respect to tunnel stability. The numerical value of q ranges from 0.001 (for exceptionally poor quality squeezing-ground) up to 1000 (for exceptionally good quality rock which is practically unjointed). The rock mass quality q is a function of six parameters, each of which has a rating of importance, which can be estimated from surface mapping and can be updated during subsequent excavation. The six parameters are as follows; the rqd index, the number of joint sets, the roughness of the weakest joints, the degree of alteration or filling along the weakest joints, and two further parameters which account for the rock load and water inflow. In combination these parameters represent the rock block-size, the inter-block shear strength, and the active stress. The proposed classification is illustrated by means of field examples and selected case records. Detailed analysis of the rock mass quality and corresponding support practice has shown that suitable permanent support can be estimated for the whole spectrum of rock qualities. This estimate is based on the rock mass quality q, the support pressure, and the dimensions and purpose of the excavation. The support pressure appears to be a function of q, the joint roughness, and the number of joint sets. The latter two determine the dilatency and the degree of freedom of the rock mass. Detailed recommendations for support measures include various combinations of shotcrete, bolting, and cast concrete arches together with the appropriate bolt spacings and lengths, and the requisite thickness of shotcrete or concrete. The boundary between self supporting tunnels and those requiring some form of permanent support can be determined from the rock mass quality q. /TRRL/

  • Corporate Authors:

    Springer Verlag

    175 5th Avenue
    New York, NY  United States  10010
  • Authors:
    • Barton, N
    • Lien, R
    • Lunde, J
  • Publication Date: 1974-12

Media Info

  • Features: Figures; Photos; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: p. 189-236
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00125198
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Transport and Road Research Laboratory (TRRL)
  • Files: ITRD, TRIS
  • Created Date: Nov 18 1975 12:00AM