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Damage assessment of basaltic rock mass due to repeated blasting in a railway tunnelling project - A case study

Ramulu, M and Chakraborty, AK and Sitharam, TG (2009) Damage assessment of basaltic rock mass due to repeated blasting in a railway tunnelling project - A case study. In: Tunnelling and Underground Space Technology, 24 (2). pp. 208-221.

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The demand for tunnelling and underground space creation is rapidly growing due to the requirement of civil infrastructure projects and urbanisation. Blasting remains the most inexpensive method of underground excavations in hard rock. Unfortunately, there are no specific safety guidelines available for the blasted tunnels with regards to the threshold limits of vibrations caused by repeated blasting activity in the close proximity. This paper presents the results of a comprehensive study conducted to find out the effect of repeated blast loading on the damage experienced by jointed basaltic rock mass during tunnelling works. Conducting of multiple rounds of blasts for various civil excavations in a railway tunnel imparted repeated loading on rock mass of sidewall and roof of the tunnel. The blast induced damage was assessed by using vibration attenuation equations of charge weight scaling law and measured by borehole extensometers and borehole camera. Ground vibrations of each blasting round were also monitored by triaxial geophones installed near the borehole extensometers. The peak particle velocity (V-max) observations and plastic deformations from borehole extensometers were used to develop a site specific damage model. The study reveals that repeated dynamic loading imparted on the exposed tunnel from subsequent blasts, in the vicinity, resulted in rock mass damage at lesser vibration levels than the critical peak particle velocity (V-cr). It was found that, the repeated blast loading resulted in the near-field damage due to high frequency waves and far-field damage due to low frequency waves. The far field damage, after 45-50 occurrences of blast loading, was up to 55% of the near-field damage in basaltic rock mass. The findings of the study clearly indicate that the phenomena of repeated blasting with respect to number of cycles of loading should be taken into consideration for proper assessment of blast induced damage in underground excavations.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publication: Tunnelling and Underground Space Technology
Publisher: Elsevier Science
Additional Information: Copyright of this article belongs to Elsevier Science.
Keywords: Tunnelling; Repeated blasting; Rock mass damage; Peak particle velocity
Department/Centre: Division of Mechanical Sciences > Civil Engineering
Date Deposited: 30 Apr 2009 04:29
Last Modified: 20 Apr 2012 09:22
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/19459

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