Application of a Three-Dimensional Coupled Finite Element?Boundary Element Method

by Ronald S. Ushijima, MIT, Cambridge, MA, USA,
Herbert H. Einstein, MIT, Cambridge, MA, USA,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Rock Masses: Modeling of Underground Openings/Probability of Slope Failure/Fracture of Intact Rock


Three-dimensional conditions in underground construction occur at the face of a tunnel, at intersections of underground openings and around roughly equidimensional openings. As long as the shapes are simple, two-dimensional approximations are often adequate. Such approximations consider intersecting openings through intersecting cross-sectional planes, while for the conditions of the advancing tunnel face a number of solutions exist in which the displacements ahead of the face are simulated. The development of reliable numerical techniques has led to their applications in this field including some 3-dimensional finite element and boundary element computer codes specifically aimed at underground openings. A relatively recent survey on the state of the art of numerical modelling, which also discusses applications to underground openings, can be found in the Report of the U. S. National Committee on Rock Mechanics (1981). Refs.

Subject Headings: Finite element method | Boundary element method | Underground structures | Underground construction | Tunnels | Structural members | Structural behavior

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