Publication Abstract

Proceedings-DFI/EFFC 11th International Conference on Piling and Deep Foundations, 2014, Stockholm, Sweden, (DFI)

New Possibilities for Quality Assurance of Diaphragm Wall Joints
Ernst Niederleithinger, BAM Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing, Germany; Nikolaus Schneider, GuD Geotechnik und Dynamik Consult GmbH, Germany; Joram M. Amir, Ltd.; Israel

Diaphragm walls are used to provide a stable and watertight confinement for the construction of tunnels, underground railway stations, deep basements and other structures requiring deep excavations. Water seepage and soil loss through the joints have occurred on several occasions, causing extensive damage. This may have been due to uncontrolled concrete flow between the joints, unexpected geologic conditions or just poor workmanship. Different ways of quality assurance are applied on construction sites. Most of them rely on recording parameters of the construction equipment and conventional concrete quality control. In the frame of the EUREKA/ZIM project DiWaQ we have looked at several ways to perform non-destructive quality control. Some methods are to be applied after excavation before concreting (phase 1); others after the wall is completed (phase 2). For phase 1 we have used two different principles for checking the shape of the excavation, especially the joint to existing panels. A mechanical device which can be adapted to the excavating equipment was developed; field tested and validated on test and construction sites. It is described in detail in another paper in the same volume. A sonar-based device with a 10 mm resolution has shown good performance in the lab, but is still under development. For phase 2 different temperature sensors have been lowered into access holes to monitor the hydration heat developed during concrete curing. The same tubes can also be used to perform electromagnetic and ultrasonic crosshole measurements across or along joints to detect flaws. Especially the ultrasonic method has shown promising results on validation specimen at the BAM test site at Horstwalde, but limitations as well. Success substantially depended on the joint type, flaw size and distance of the sensors to the joint.

 article #1962; publication #100 (IC-2014)