Full 3D modelling for effects of tunnelling on existing support systems in the Sydney region
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Liu, H and Small, JC and Carter, JP, Full 3D modelling for effects of tunnelling on existing support systems in the Sydney region, Tunnelling and Underground Space Technology, 23, (4) pp. 399-420. ISSN 0886-7798 (2008) [Refereed Article]
The assessment of the interaction between a new tunnel and existing structures is an important issue in urban areas. In this study, the effect of tunnelling on the existing support system (i.e. shotcrete lining and rock bolts) of an adjacent tunnel is firstly investigated using ABAQUS and TUNNEL3D through full three-dimensional (3D) finite element calculations coupled with elasto-plastic material models, which takes into account the tunnelling procedure, the interaction between the shotcrete lining and rock mass, the interaction between the rock bolts and rock mass, and the elasto-plastic behaviour of the rock mass, the shotcrete lining and the rock bolts. Then, on the basis of the calculated results, it is concluded that the driving of the new tunnel significantly affects the existing support system when the advancing tunnel face passes the existing support system and is minor when the face is far from it. Moreover, the support system in the side of the existing tunnel closest to the new tunnel is more significantly affected than that on the side opposite to the new tunnel. It is also found that in a region such as Sydney with relatively high horizontal regional stresses, the driving of the new tunnel will not cause considerable adverse effects on the existing support system, if the new tunnel is driven horizontally parallel to the existing tunnel with a sufficient separation, since both the tensile stress in the existing shotcrete lining in the lateral sides of the preceding tunnel and the compressive stress at the crown decrease although noticeable tensile stress increments are observed on some parts of the existing rock bolts. Finally, it is pointed out that the effects of tunnelling on the existing support system strongly depend on the position between the original and new tunnels. In terms of the stress increments on the existing support system, especially the maximum tensile stress increments on the existing shotcrete lining, the driving of the new tunnel causes increasingly adverse effects on the existing support system in a sequence of: (i) horizontally parallel tunnels with a separation of 30 m; (ii) horizontally parallel tunnels with a separation of 20 m; (iii) staggered tunnels with a separation of 30 m; (iv) vertically alignment tunnels; and (v) staggered tunnels with a separation of 20 m in the cases investigated in this study. For the relatively high regional stresses in the Sydney region, the obtained results qualitatively agree with other's published observations from the construction of closely parallel subway tunnels. © 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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