Terrain Analysis for the Trans-Alaska Pipeline

by Raymond A. Kreig, Engr.; R & M Consultants, Inc., Fairbanks, Alaska,

Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1977, Vol. 47, Issue 7, Pg. 61-65

Document Type: Feature article


Airphoto interpretation and field reconnaissance were combined with a computer-based data bank to evaluate the diverse terrain conditions along the Trans-Alaska Pipeline because acquisition of ground-truth was limited by high costs and difficult access. Terrain unit maps at a scale of 1:12,000 showing landforms and soils along the route were used as a basis for design, materials source location and many other applications where geotechnical input was required. The data bank was used for storage, rapid retrieval and analysis of information from extensive field investigations and laboratory tests. From it, quantitative assessments of the natural variation of critical soil properties along the route were prepared by comparing conditions in different landforms. This approach was very useful for allocating exploration efforts more efficiently and planning pipeline construction.

Subject Headings: Terrain | Pipelines

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