Flexible Rockfall Barrier Post Support Performance: Deflection as a Positive Attribute

by Avid J. Scarpato, P.E., (M.ASCE), president of Scarptec, Inc., Rock Engineering Solutions in Bourne, MA. His areas of expertise include dificult-access slope rockfall mitigation design and remediation, and rock reinforcement design., dave@scarptec.com,
Peter C. Ingraham, P.E., senior geological engineer and principal with Golder Associates Inc. He has been working with rockfall mitigation systems since 1990, peter_ingraham@golder.com,
Robert P. Group, P.E., engineering geologist with the Colorado DOT’s Geohazards Program. He is responsible for rock slope stability assessments and rockfall-mitigation construction projects across the state of Colorado., robert.group@state.co.us,
Tim D. Shevlin, P.G., technical director of sales for Geobrugg North America, LLC, headquartered in Algodones, NM. He has been employed in the geotechnical field since 2001, working on a variety of geotechnical investigations including numerous slope stabilization and foundation projects., tim.shevlin@geobrugg.com,

Serial Information: Geo-Strata —Geo Institute of ASCE, 2020, Vol. 24, Issue 3, Pg. 60-66

Document Type: Feature article

Abstract: Rockfall has plagued infrastructure for centuries, whether generated by natural weathering of unaltered rock slopes or due to jointing and weaknesses in constructed rock slopes. Rockfall in the U.S. has been formally studied since the early 1960s, when Arthur Ritchie, chief geologist with the Washington State Department of Highways, assessed inadequacies with the state of practice relative to catchment ditch design. Since that time, rockfall analysis has become more sophisticated with the use of 3D simulation and rockfall runout models. Several international manufacturers have developed flexible rockfall barrier (fence-like) systems, the designs of which are continuously updated and improved based on testing and field performance. Most flexible rockfall barrier manufacturers also offer debris flow and avalanche barriers using similar elements.

Subject Headings: Three-dimensional models | Landslides | Displacement (mechanics) | Rocks | Slopes | Highway and road design | Three-dimensional analysis | Field tests


Return to search