Case History: North Slope Alaska Hydraulic Dredging

by Craig C. LaVielle, Rittenhouse-Zeman & Associates, Bellevue, WA, USA,
Alvin R. Zeman, Rittenhouse-Zeman & Associates, Bellevue, WA, USA,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Dredging and Dredged Material Disposal


Alaska's North Slope Borough, with the aid of dredging machinery consultant Michael Weston, and geotechnical consultant Rittenhouse-Zeman & Associates, has pioneered a unique, large scale arctic dredging program during the last three years. The primary objective of this program has been the acquisition of quality, non-frost susceptible borrow material to be used in the construction of the basic roads and building pads needed in the Borough's eight Eskimo (Inupiaq) villages. This unprecedented program has pioneered the dredging and dredge material handling and placement techniques in the arctic. Specifically discussed are this program's experience with winter time (through the ice) borrow source exploration, geotechnical thermal evaluation of disposal sites and some of the unique logistical problems of dredging on the North Slope. The use of hydraulic suction dredges has proven to be an efficient, economical and environmentally sound means to mine, transport, process, and directly place large quantities of borrow material in areas of fragile tundra and ice-rich permafrost.

Subject Headings: Case studies | Dredging | Dredged materials | Slopes | Hydraulics | Construction materials | Ice | Soil suction | Alaska | United States | Arctic

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