Principles of the NATM and Other Uses of the Geologic Monitoring Techniques

by J. D. Jenkins, ILF Consultants Inc, Washington, United States,
H. J. Sander, ILF Consultants Inc, Washington, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: High Level Radioactive Waste Management 1991


The NATM (New Austrian Tunneling Method) differs in several respects from other construction methods. Also referred to as the 'sequential support method' or the 'observational tunneling method,' NATM offers outstanding flexibility by extending the design into the construction phase. Geologic monitoring of the underground opening (tunnel, shaft or cavern) on an on-going basis provides the means by which the precise support measures and tunnel advance sequence may be matched to varying rock conditions. The pragmatic principles, developed and perfected by NATM Engineers, depend upon sophisticated in situ monitoring of rock conditions on an ongoing basis. These same monitoring techniques, born of the need to determine safe, efficient ground support, are also utilized in the long term checking of existing tunnels. In addition, the instrumentation and program systems of NATM can provide accurate measurements to meet many of the site characterization requirements of underground nuclear repositories even when employed in combination with mechanical excavation.

Subject Headings: Geology | Rocks | Construction methods | Shafts | Field tests | Professional societies | Safety | Radioactive wastes

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