An investigation of trenchless technologies and their interaction with native Iowa soils

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2008-01-01
Authors
Conway, William
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Abstract

Trenchless technologies are methods used for the construction and rehabilitation of underground utility pipes. These methods are growing increasingly popular due to their versatility and their potential to lower project costs. The use of trenchless technologies in Iowa and their effects on surrounding soil and nearby structures has not been adequately documented, however.

Surveys and interviews of professionals working in trenchless related industries in Iowa were carried out and the results are analyzed and compared to survey results from the United States as a whole. The surveys focused on method familiarity, pavement distress observed, reliability of trenchless methods, and future improvements. Results indicate that the frequency of pavement distress or other trenchless related problems is an ongoing problem in the industry. Inadequate soils information and QC/QA are partially to blame.

Field work involving the observation of trenchless construction projects was undertaken with the purpose of documenting current practices and applications of trenchless technology in the United States and Iowa. Field testing was performed in which push-in pressure cells were used to measure the soil stresses induced by trenchless construction methods. A program of laboratory soil testing was run in conjunction with the field testing.

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