Issue 2 | 2014
Pilinginvolving Industry contractors Canada How early could save your project
Award Winning Work
Major rehabilitation work for Vancouverâ€™s SeaBus berthing structure www.pilingindustrycanada.com
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Pile Driving Vibrations and Building Damage
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Table of Contents Published by
Piling Industry News............................................................................................................. 8 Pile Driving Vibrations and Building Damage............................................................... 14 ROC Equipment –
On the cutting edge of drilled shaft technology..............................................
Distinguished History –
Piling projects call for expertise...............................................................................
Piling Ahead –
How involving contractors early could save your project............................
High-Profile Projects –
Berkel & Company Contractors showcase extensive capabilities....................
20 24 28 32
In Real Time – Liebherr presents simulator for operator training on construction machinery......................................................................
Award Winning Work –
Major rehabilitation work for Vancouver’s SeaBus berthing structure......
Right on Track –
Thiess Pty Ltd. brings rail to North Brisbane suburbs...........................................
40 44 48 49
Old is New – Historic building among first challenges of Alaska Way Viaduct tunnel replacement................................................................................
Fertile Ground AECON MINING CONSTRUCTION SERVICES...........................................................................................
Suite 300, 6 Roslyn Road Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada R3L 0G5 President & CEO: David Langstaff Publisher: Jason Stefanik Managing Editor: Carly Peters firstname.lastname@example.org Sales Manager: Dayna Oulion email@example.com Advertising Account Executives: Jennifer Hebert Michelle Raike Production services provided by: S.G. Bennett Marketing Services www.sgbennett.com
Layout & Design: Joel Gunter Advertising Art: Sheri Kidd, Dana Jensen
Drive Easy – Flatiron Construction Corporation utilizes APE vibratory and diesel hammers on Edmonton’s Northeast Anthony Henday Drive project..............
Art Director: Kathy Cable
First Subsea Piling Services Operation Goes to Plan – Technip in Norway reaps benefits of new piling technology from CIS Group....................................................................
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COVER PHOTO: Soilmec’s New SR-95 Features Advanced Technology and a Tier 4 Engine Condon-Johnson & Associates, Inc. is installing drilled shaft foundations for a new 6-level residential structure over 1-level parking structure in Irvine, California, using a brand new Soilmec SR-95. The SR-95 is one of a new line of Soilmec drill rigs. Soilmec’s new rigs offer greater productivity, more flexibility in the types of foundations that can be built, easier transportability, better operator comfort and control, and reduced emissions. Condon-Johnson builds with Soilmec. For more information, contact Soilmec’s Canadian agent: Steve Wilson, Champion Equipment Sales, LLC 801.228.8919 email@example.com
6 PIC Magazine • December 2014
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Your True Project Partner Skyline Steel is a premier steel foundation supplier with an extensive network of manufacturing and stocking locations. Our wide range of products include H-piles, Pipe Piles, Steel Sheet Piles, Threaded Bar, Micropiles, Piling Accessories, and Structural Sections. See how Skyline Steel can help with your next project. Visit skylinesteel.com or call. In Western Canada (BC, AB, SK, MB, YT, NT, and NU), call 1-780-460-8363; In Eastern Canada (ON, NB, NS, QC, PE, and NL.), call 1-866-461-6366.
ÂŠ 2014 Skyline Steel, LLC. Skyline Steel is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Nucor Corporation, the largest producer of steel in the United States.
Canada Piling Industry News pic website Wanna get more PIC News in your day? Check-out Piling Industry Canada’s website, www.pilingindustrycanada.com, for more news, supplier releases, and feature stories.
New Piling Industry Canada Directory Piling Industry Canada is launching a standalone directory. The coil-bound booklet will feature listings from piling contractors, suppliers, engineering/consulting firms, associations, organizations and educational institutions, and more. Watch for the first edition in early 2015.
Thermal Integrity Profiling recognized by American Society of Civil Engineers and Deep Foundations Institute The American Society of Civil Engineers, ASCE, announced the Thermal Integrity Profiler (TIP) as the 2015 winner of the Charles Pankow Award for Innovation. This award celebrates collaboration in innovative design, materials, or construction-related research and development transferred into practice in a sustainable manner. The award also rewards innovative approaches that help achieve at least one of the National Construction Technology Goals. The innovative TIP, which uses the heat generated during cement curing to assess the shape and integrity of concrete foundations, was recognized by ASCE in part due to the collaborative efforts that were key to its development. “The thermal integrity profiling technology was developed initially at the University of South Florida (USF) where it evolved throughout three Florida Department of Transportation funded research project,” says Gray Mullins, PhD, PE, the USF Professor who led the research team. A fourth study was performed in cooperation with Washington State Department of Transportation. A joint effort was then undertaken by Foundation & Geotechnical Engineering, LLC (FGE), using the USF-licensed technology, and Pile Dynamics, Inc. (PDI). The two firms transformed the thermal integrity profiling technology into the Thermal Integrity Profiler. Asked about TIP’s contributions to achieve 8 PIC Magazine • December 2014
Gorazd Strnisa from SLP conducting Thermal Integrity Profiling in Slovenia.
National Construction Technology Goals,
died 100-120 million years ago, but it’s been
Pile Dynamics’s Garland Likins, P.E., focused
only 30 since he finally encountered a predator
on the goal of reduction on project delivery
he couldn’t outrun: Atlas Copco equipment.
time, explaining that current test methods of evaluating the quality of cast-in-place foundation elements are performed after the concrete of the foundation has cured, a process that takes several days. Typically, construction cannot proceed until foundations are approved. An evaluation performed with TIP may yield evaluation result as early as 12 to 24 hours after concrete casting, depending on shaft diameter. This aspect is only one of the advantages of this breakthrough testing procedure. Thermal Integrity Profiling is also less labour intensive
“Not every company has a dinosaur species named after it,” says Sofie Gielen, Atlas Copco’s marketing communications director, in commemorating the 30th anniversary of the discovery of Atlascopcosaurus. “Three decades later, we’re still extremely proud of the fact that our equipment helped unearth the fossilized skeleton of Atlascopcosaurus so it could be shared with the entire world.” Atlascopcosaurus was an estimated 6.5- to 13-feet long and weighed 276 pounds. The di-
than other integrity testing methods, and examines portions of the cross sectional area of the foundation that are in the ‘’blind zone” of those other tests. Exactly a week prior the Deep Foundations Institute announced that Prof. Mullins and his research team at the University of South Florida, were the recipients of the 2014 Ben C. Gerwick Award for Innovation in the Design and Construction of Marine Foundations. That honour was granted “for practical research on multiple subjects”, among them thermal integrity profiling of drilled shafts. For more information on the Thermal Integrity Profiler please visit www.pile.com/tip
Atlas Copco Celebrates 30th Anniversary of Atlascopcosaurus It’s not clear how the unnamed dinosaur
Atlascopcosaurus was discovered in 1984, and named in honor of Atlas Copco’s support of archeological research.
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Canada Piling Industry News nosaur belonged to the Hypsilophodontidae family and lived during the early Cretaceous Period. Scientists infer that it was a small, bipedal herbivore that would have foraged for its food and stayed out of the way of larger, carnivorous predators. Thomas H. Rich, PhD, a paleontologist from the Museum of Victoria, Australia, and Patricia Vickers-Rich from Monash University, Melbourne, discovered Atlascopcosaurus at Dinosaur Cove, a fossil-rich area on the southeast coast of Australia, close to Victoria. During Rich’s first visit to the area in 1980, he and two colleagues revealed fragments of rock-embedded bone. Four years later, a group of hundreds of student volunteers, paleontology scientists and miners began excavations. The research group’s equipment included Atlas Copco rock drills, pneumatic tools and compressors. The digging teams often worked in dark, narrow tunnels, which at times were muddy and slippery. The excavation site was located next to a steep cliff overlooking the sea, which complicated work even further. The fossils they were after were embedded in layers of sand, mud and clay that had been pressed together into hard rock for millions of years. It was slow going, with the teams removing approximately 66 pounds of hard rock for every two pounds of dinosaur bone. Ultimately, the excavation revealed Atlascopcosaurus loadsi. The specific name loadsi refers to Bill Loads, Atlas Copco’s manager in Victoria who made the decision to support the project. When Rich and Vickers-Rich named the fossil in 1989, they looked to the company whose equipment and expert assistance was so instrumental in the success of the dig. Rich said he was grateful for the support Atlas Copco provided and impressed with the reliability of the equipment. “It was because of that record of reliability that, in 2007, I insisted on using Atlas Copco equipment during a dinosaur excavation from permafrost in a tunnel on the North Slope of Alaska.”
CIS Group Awarded Gold Medal for Occupational Health and Safety Conductor Installation Services Ltd (CIS), an Acteon company that provides hammer services to install conductors and drive piles, has been awarded the prestigious Gold Medal 10 PIC Magazine • December 2014
demonstrates outstanding commitment to protecting the health and safety of its employees and customers.
Highest safety accolade in UK “Working in the oil and gas industry is unlike any other. Yes, it is highly rewarding, but carries with it predictable risks. Whether working onshore or offshore, these risks must The prestigious Gold Medal for be addressed each and every day, which is why Occupational Health and Safety from the UK’s Royal Society for the Prevention of commitment to safety is an essential part of Accidents (RoSPA) was presented by (left) the CIS working experience,” says Andy PenMichael Parker CBE, RoSPA Vice Chairman, man, group managing director of the CIS to Andy Penman, Group Managing Director Group. “Receiving the Gold Medal, the UK’s of Conductor Installation Services in highest safety accolade, means that our people Great Yarmouth, England. are choosing to work safely, with great care for Occupational Health and Safety from the and vigilance. They recognise that operating UK’s Royal Society for the Prevention of Acyear after year without a single LTI would not cidents (RoSPA). be possible without their dedication, so I am The prize is especially meaningful because deeply grateful to them.” it is only awarded to those organisations that In recognition of this outstanding achievehave received a Gold Award for Occupational ment, Andy Penman, group managing direcHealth and Safety for five consecutive years, tor of CIS, was presented the award by Michael which CIS achieved this year. Once again, CIS Parker CBE, RoSPA vice-chairman at the Rocompleted another year of operation without SPA Occupational Health & Safety Awards an accident or incident that resulted in a Lost Ceremony in Birmingham, England. Time Incident (LTI). CIS, a member of Acteon’s Conductors, Risers and Flowlines group, provides conductor and pile installation services associated with Working safe paves construction projects carried out in the global path to success oil and gas industry. These services are carried Since opening its doors in 2005, CIS has out both onshore and offshore to, for example, made safety a top priority, investing in training create foundations for new wells, platforms, in safe practices that has made it possible for bridges and jetties. the company to achieve a great deal without The range of services provided by CIS supcompromising quality or putting others at risk. ports the Acteon Group’s commitment to de“CIS has installed conductors for us in a fining subsea services across a range of interwide range of environments, from tropical waconnected disciplines. ters offshore Colombia, Malaysia and Qatar, to the frigid Caspian Sea. Regardless of the enA Good Mate vironment, CIS brings with it a commitment Soilmec’s Drilling Mate System (DMS) is a to safety,” says Anthony Papalia, TRS – RPLM high-tech, interactive tool that allows rig op– Sub Sahara Africa for Weatherford Internaerators and jobsite personnel to monitor and tional Ltd. (“Weatherford”). “While working control the machine in real time. Data from an with CIS for the past nine years, we have had array of sensors, safety devices, and the diesel zero recordable safety issues and incidents. In engine are accessible by the operator in-cab on collaboration with CIS, we are able to meet our an easy-to-use touchscreen or by managers reHSE standards of excellence at Weatherford.” motely via laptop. DMS enables the operators The RoSPA Awards criteria takes into consideration not only accident records, but the to “see underground;” monitoring the overall entrant’s overall health and safety management operation of the machine, performing troublesystems, recognising important practices such shooting, and planning maintenance. as strong leadership and workforce involveFor a detailed video about DMS visit ment. For CIS, this means that the company http://www.soilmecna.com/dms
One of the major problems that comes with high profile drill rigs is transport. Multiple trucks and trailers. Cranes. Expensive permits. No wonder it’s tough to make a profit. The E150 from Bay Shore Systems solves this problem. Now you can choose a high profile rig that, without disassembly, can fit on one trailer and still meet standard transport height, width and weight limits. Plus, you’ll have a rig that delivers 150,000 ft-lbs. (200 kN-m) of torque and a max hole depth of 150 ft. (45 m). Not only will you get the job done, but you’ll have a rig that saves you time and money before it even gets to the jobsite. Call Bay Shore Systems and add a new E150 to your drilling fleet. Visit: www.bayshoresystems.com Call: 888.569.3745
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Canada Piling Industry News rotating system, allowing a 40-degrees inclination, as well as with the SafeGrip safety features, the Grizzly MultiGripTM ensures safe and efficient operations. A standard vibrating plate transforms the excavator into a powerful compactor. The Grizzly MultiGripTM is simply as versatile as it is performant. The vibratory pile drivers are entirely designed, manufactured and assembled in Roberval, Quebec (Canada), in a state-of-theart plant. Gilbert is a leader in the design, manufacturing and marketing of forestry, saw milling and construction equipment as well as vehicle track systems and snow groomers since 1986. The company is located in Roberval, Canada and has more than 90 employees. n
Gilbert Launches the Grizzly MultiGripTM a versatile vibratory pile driver Gilbert is proud to launch a new series of side-grip vibratory pile drivers: the Grizzly MultiGripTM. This excavator-mounted attachment is equipped with a side-grip clamping device designed to facilitate and speed up the handling, driving and extraction of piles and sheet piles. Combining power, versatility and speed, the Grizzly MultiGripTM vibratory pile driver establishes new standards. Allowing all new opportunities in deep foundations, it helps construction contractors to have a better profitability with their excavators as well as a better control of timetables. The Grizzly MultiGripTM is the result of a rigorous product development process and a test program of more than 4,000 hours on site. The first model of the series, the MG-90, provides a 90-tonne centrifugal force perfectly compatible with excavators from 30 to 45 tonnes. The unique design of the lateral clamping device and the exclusive 3PAS technology, a patent-pending three-point arm sys-
Visit the website: www.grizzlymultigrip.com
tem, ensures a maximum holding power. The Quick-Change system allows you to change
jaws so you can switch from round piling to
Piling Industry Canada wishes to clarify that the image that appears on page 12 of Issue #1 2014 should have accompanied GRL Engineers, Inc.’s news item on page 8. We apologize for any confusion this may have caused.
sheet piling mode in less than five minutes. Bottom line: avoid wasting time and increase productivity. Equipped with the HD360° continuous
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Pile Driving Vibrations and Building Damage Authors K. Rainer Massarsch, Dr. Tech, Geo Risk & Vibration and Bengt H. Fellenius, Dr. Tech, P.Eng., Consulting Engineer
Figure 1. Damage mechanisms due to driving of piles or sheet piles
Under unfavorable conditions, the installation of piles or sheet piles can cause damage to buildings or other structures on the ground. Frequently, such damage is attributed to vibrations of the building itself. Many countries have national or international standards for assessing the risk of vibration damage to buildings. Since these standards are often prepared by engineers with little to no geotechnical knowledge, the effects of ground conditions on vibration propagation and damage to building foundations are generally not recognized. In addition damage criteria based solely on the dynamic response of buildings neglect the importance of damage mechanisms governed by geotechnical conditions. One potentially important damage mechanism is differential settlement below buildings, especially when they are founded on loose granular soils. When seeking guidance in geotechnical literature, little to no information can be found regarding methods to assess permissible levels of ground 14 PIC Magazine • December 2014
vibrations with respect to risk for settlement. This article summarizes a paper presented at the DFI/EFFC International Conference on Piling and Deep Foundations in Sweden in May 2014 titled: “Ground Vibrations from Pile and Sheet Pile Driving Part 1 – Building Damage.” Here the authors focus on building damage that can be attributed to foundation conditions. In the case of ground vibrations due to pile and sheet pile driving, differential settlements are of particular importance as the ground vibrations attenuate relatively rapidly from the source. Consequently, settlement below part of the building, which is located close to the vibration source, can be significantly larger than at a distance further away. Piles are often a cost-effective foundation solution for buildings on loose and compressible soil, prevalent in urbanized areas. Sheet piles are commonly used as support for deep excavations. While piles are commonly installed by impact driving, vibrators are frequently used
for driving (and extracting) sheet piles. It is important to recognize the fundamental differences between impact and vibratory driving. During impact driving, the pile is subjected to stress waves of short duration. The driving process creates vibrations, which radiate from the shaft and/or the toe of the pile into the soil. The larger the intensity of the stress wave, the larger the dynamic force and the intensity of ground vibrations. In addition to the vibration intensity, which often is expressed in terms of particle velocity, the vibration frequency is also important. When the dominant frequencies of the generated vibrations coincide with the resonance frequency of buildings or building elements, the risk of building damage increases. In the case of impact pile driving, the frequency content of ground vibrations cannot be controlled by changing the pile driving process. In contrast, during vibratory driving, the pile or sheet pile is rigidly attached to the vibrator, which oscillates vertically at a frequency that can be chosen and modified by the operator. The frequency and amplitude of modern vibrators can be adjusted in order to achieve optimal driving while minimizing environmental impact. However, if a vibrator is operated at or near the resonance frequency of buildings or building elements, strong vibrations can be generated. This amplification effect can be used to increase the efficiency of deep vibratory compaction systems, by means of “resonance compaction.” When a pile penetrates easily into the ground, the intensity of transmitted vibrations will be low. However, vibrations increase when denser soil layers are encountered and pile penetration speed decreases. Ground vibrations thus depend on the geotechnical conditions which need to be considered in the risk assessment. During the initial phase of pile penetration, the source of vibrations will be located close to the ground surface. However, when the pile penetrates deeper into the ground, the source of vibrations becomes more
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Technical Feature the foundation can lead to differential movements between different parts of the building.
Settlement due to vibrations
ment caused by ground vibrations. Settlement due to vibrations is largest in loose, granular soils, such as sand and silt. Differential settlements are more critical than total settlement. Damage Category IV comprises building damage caused by dynamic effects in the building itself, which is the only damage category typically considered in vibration standards. Ground conditions play an important role when assessing the risk of damage due to piledriving induced vibrations (see Figure 2). One example is a building on loose sand or silt. If the building is founded on uncompacted granular soil and the area has not previously been exposed to strong ground vibrations, the building is more prone to suffer vibration damage. Another case is a building founded on a
While most vibration standards address the effects of ground vibrations on buildings, few recognize the potential risk of building damage that can be caused by settlement in the ground below a building foundation. The risk of settlement due to ground vibrations exists primarily in loose sand and silt. In other soils, such as soft clays, vibrations can contribute to but are rarely the main source of settlement. The topic of settlement due to pile-driving induced ground vibrations has been addressed only in a limited number of publications. There is a need for guidance documents that can be used by the practicing engineer to assess the risk of settlements. The first step is to determine vibration limits below which the risk of settlement is negligible. It is possible to determine critical vibration levels, which are based on the shear strain level generated by ground vibrations. When vibrations pass through material, strain is induced. Strain, Îľ , caused by propagation of a compression wave (P-wave) can be determined if the particle velocity, v , measured in the direction of vp wave propagation, and the wave speed, cp, are known. Similarly, the shear strain, Îł, can be calculated by dividing the particle velocity measured perpendicularly to the direction of wave propagation with the shear wave speed, cs. Shear strain is an important parametre when assessing the risk of settlement in granular soils or disturbance of cohesive soils. A
a) Variation of vibration amplitude with distance from source
b) Variable ground conditions below building
slope where material had been excavated from the slope and placed to create a level foundation. Unless the placed fill is well compacted, the risk of differential settlement between the fill and the excavated area below the building will be high. Another example is a building that is partly founded on natural or filled soil, and partly on piles. Differences in stiffness of
c) Mixed foundation
Figure 2. Foundation conditions that may result in total and differential settlement. Assessment of settlement risk in sand.
complex. Vibrations can be emitted from the toe of the pile but also along the pile shaft. Therefore, geotechnical conditions are of great importance when trying to predict the intensity of ground vibrations. It is important to know the location of hard soil layers through which the pile will be driven since they may give rise to strong ground vibrations.
Building damage due to vibrations In assessing the risk for damage to a building due to pile-driving induced vibrations, it is important to define the type of building damage that is considered. Moreover, one must also realize that the damage can occur as a secondary effect of the vibration, that is, it can result from settlement of the soil on which the building is resting. Damage to buildings and their foundations can be related to four different damage categories (see Figure 1). Damage Category I comprises static ground movements, which can occur in the vicinity of deep excavations. The installation of displacement piles can also give rise to heave and lateral displacements, which can damage buildings. Another possible source of static soil movement can be from the vibration-triggered movement of adjacent slopes or excavations with low factor of safety. Damage Category II is caused by ground distortion. When the waves propagate along the ground surface, foundations of adjacent buildings can be subjected to a large number of upward (hogging) and downward (sagging) movements. The risk of damage is then largest when the length of the building corresponds to approximately half the wave length. Damage Category III is due to settle16 PIC Magazine â€˘ December 2014
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Technical Feature threshold strain level, γt, exists t below which it is unlikely that any rearrangement of soil particles will occur and, therefore, the vibrations will not generate an increase of pore water pressure in water-saturated sands. It has been shown that soil disturbance will not occur if shear strain are below a threshold value of γt ≈ 0.001 per cent. When this level is exceeded, the risk of particle rearrangement and thus settlement increases (see Figure 3). At a shear strain level of 0.01 per cent, vibrations can start to cause settlement, and this value should not be exceeded. Significant risk of settlements exists when the shear strain level exceeds 0.1 per cent. It is important to note that shear modulus and shear wave speed are affected by shear strain. The shear wave speed decreases with increasing shear strain and this reduction depends on the fines content (plasticity index) of the soil. The reduction of shear wave speed is more pronounced in gravel and sand than in silt and is even smaller in clay. In the following example, piles are driven in the vicinity of a building founded on medium dense sand. It is assumed that the sand has an average shear wave speed of 200 m/s (656 ft/s). From Figure 3 it is possible to determine the three damage threshold levels: no risk (0.001 per cent shear strain) = 2 mm/s (0.08 in/s); low risk (0.01 per cent shear strain) = 20 mm/s (0.8 in/s); and high risk (0.1 per cent shear strain) = 75 mm/s (2.9 in/s). In practice, a planning engineer can require pile driving tests where the expected vibration levels can be determined as a function of pile penetration depth and at different distances. This information can be used to assess the risk level with respect to settlement in the sand. If the predicted vibration level exceeds the “low risk” level, a detailed monitoring program should be implemented. This simple example illustrates that it is possible to assess the risk of settlement when sandy soil is subjected to ground vibrations. Of course, a more detailed analysis can be performed which also takes into account other important factors, such as number of vibration cycles, etc. However, for many practi18 PIC Magazine • December 2014
cal purposes, a simple assessment of the settlement risk in combination with field monitoring will suffice.
Conclusion Driving of piles or sheet piles can cause damage to building foundations or installations in the ground, such as sewage pipes and tanks. Some of the observed damage may not directly be related to vibrations but to static ground movement. Vibrations can cause settlement in loose granular soils, a fact which is not appreciated in most building vibration standards. Differential settlements of the ground below a building are often the main reason for damage in building foundations, where damage can propagate up the building structure and be interpreted as vibration damage. Therefore, it is important that the risk of settlement in granular soils due to ground vibrations is included in a risk analysis. Another important aspect which frequently is overlooked is the type of building foundation. Of particular significance is the vulnerability of buildings with mixed foundations where one part of the building is founded on stiff ground or piles, and the other part on soft or loose soil. A basic method is proposed to estimate the risk of settlement due to ground vibration in granular soils. Even in very loose sand and silt with a shear wave speed of about 100 m/s (328 ft/s), settlements are unlikely to occur when the peak particle velocity is below 1 mm/s (0.04 in/s). However, the risk of settlement increases when the peak particle velocity exceeds about 10 mm/s (0.4 in/s). In the case of important projects, pile driving tests and vibration monitoring will provide valuable information. n This article was originally published in DFI’s bi-monthly magazine, Deep Foundations, Sept/Oct 2014 issue. DFI is an international technical association of firms and individuals involved in the deep foundations and related industry. Deep Foundations is a member publication. To join DFI and receive the magazine, go to www.dfi.org for further information.
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PIC ROC Equipment
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On the Cutting Edge of Drilled Shaft Technology By Ashley White
ROC Equipment is on the cutting edge of
concrete overrun costs, not to mention any ex-
drilled shaft technology. As the sole North
penses associated with costly anomaly repairs.
American distributor for BUMA CE CO.,
Rotators can rotate casing through harder
LTD, ROC sells and rents casing oscillators,
geological formations and buried obstructions
rotators, reverse circulation drilling machines
better than a typical conventional drill rig. In
(RCDs), digging and service cranes, complete
fact, a rotator can drill through the most dif-
drill spreads, sectional casing, section tremie
ficult of geologic conditions requiring casing.
pipe, and all other support tooling. ROC sup-
BUMA makes a rotator that has two times
plies all types of drilling equipment, and can
the rotation speed of any other rotator on the
provide customized machinery for even the
market, not to mention more torque, and a
most unique projects.
higher extraction force.
Casing oscillators and rotators
with preserving nearby historic landmarks
When project designs include concerns or damaging adjacent structures, utilities, or
Introduced to North America within the
newly constructed shafts, a casing oscillator
last 20 years, casing oscillators and rota-
or rotator is the preferred methodology as it
tors have slowly built a reputation as a great
eliminates the risk of ground settlement and
method of drilling cased shafts. Drillers who
damage to adjacent structures. The equip-
use oscillators or rotators know that they can
ment does not use vibrations or pile driving
produce a straighter shaft quicker, with fewer
for casing installation, which is great for areas
anomalies, and virtually no concrete overrun,
in which impacting local residents, businesses,
meaning lower costs and a better product. The
and structures are a concern. Lower decibel
following list provides quick information on
levels are produced with an oscillator or rota-
the advantages of oscillators and rotators:
tor, meaning less disruption to sensitive areas
The use of an oscillator or rotator to ad-
surrounding the job site.
vance casing creates a more vertical shaft with minimal defects. This significantly cuts back on over excavation, saving the contractor in 20 PIC Magazine • December 2014
RCDs Reverse circulation drilling machines were
developed in the 1970s in Australia, and have been utilized all over the world since. RCD machines function by injecting compressed air into a drill pipe just below the water level and right above the drill bit. The drill bit rotates, and grinds off cuttings from the rock. Water, air and these cuttings are then flushed through a drill pipe into setting tanks where the cuttings are separated from the water. The following list provides some facts about RCD machines: • RCDs are excellent for drilling large diameter shafts, anything greater than 800 millimetres. • They are able to drill deep depths of more than 50 metres. • RCDs can drill through hard rock with high Mpa ratings. • They are great to use for bore piling in marine conditions. Reverse circulation drilling is has been so
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successful, that BUMA has supplied over 100 RCD units worldwide.
ROC offers more than just equipment ROC Equipment was created in 2007, by Louis (Lou) Lucido as a way to supply contractors with specialty drilling equipment through sales, rentals, and rental purchase offers. A driller himself, Lou brought his whole family into the foundation drilling industry by teaching his children, Vanessa, Rusty, and Anthony, all aspects of the drilling business. He believed in learning through first-hand experience, and made his children work from the bottom up in his drilling company. Each of his children have become successful project managers, unsurprising, as they had drilling in their blood. Lou and Vanessa spent a lot of time together travelling all over the world searching out new
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drilling equipment and methodologies. It was on one these trips that Lou and Vanessa were introduced to BUMA and their equipment, and a great business relationship began. Lou passed away in 2012, and his daughter Vanessa took over ROC Equipment as CEO. Since taking control of ROC, Vanessa has put much focus on growing and expanding the company. Vanessa’s first mission was to create ROC’s consulting services. Vanessa hired drillers who were familiar with the equipment ROC sold, so that they could offer their clients equipment training, project consulting, onthe-job supervision, and equipment repair. The creation of this consulting service is one of the things that make ROC Equipment unique; contractors can have all of their needs met in one company. Another aspect Vanessa added to the company was anomaly repair. Shafts with anoma-
lies can be difficult and costly to fix, but ROC has the resources, experience, and availability to repair any shaft. Another great advantage ROC Equipment has is that Vanessa is a certified safety consultant and can provide on-site safety training, and OSHA certification. ROC Equipment has clients all over North America. Their clients appreciate the quality of equipment, short lead times, excellent customer service, and consulting services provided. ROC understands that the industry is constantly changing. As buildings and bridges become more innovative, the foundations on which they stand on must change. As environmental concerns become more pressing, drilling methods must adapt to accommodate these worries as well. ROC Equipment will continue to provide quality specialty drilling equipment to meet the needs of their clients. n
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PIC Distinguished History
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Piling projects call for expertise By Melanie Franner The piles used in this project were 600 millimetres in diametre and nine metres deep, while the guide piles measured between six and seven metres in length. “We also installed some large piles for another debottlenecking project,” continues Hopkins, who adds the project required four large piles for the tower crane base, each of which measured 1.2 metres in diametre and was 40 metres deep. “We had to drill using a polymer slurry to suppress the potential gas emissions from the oil sands.” There were approximately 60 crew on-site who were involved in the piling and concrete work. Ledcor met the company’s high expectations for safety performance by delivering all of these projects without any personal safety incidents.
Drilling the caissons for the tower legs
Ledcor Group of Companies is involved in several different facets of the North American construction industry. Two recent projects, in particular, have brought to the fore the company’s long and distinguished history in the pilings sector. The first is the ongoing work being done at a major oil sands mining operation north of Fort McMurray, and the second is the work being done on ATCO Electric’s Eastern Alberta Transmission Line (EATL) project. These two projects showcase the piling expertise that Ledcor brings to the table.
In the oil sands Ledcor has been installing foundations for the oil sands mining sites since 2006. “In 2011, we installed 150 cast-in-place concrete piles and close to 200 guide piles for a mine expansion,” says John Hopkins, project manager, Ledcor. “In February of 2012, we were also involved in a debottlenecking project that required foundation work being installed for the plant expansion, booster pump house, and electrical buildings.” The foundation work for the booster pump 24 PIC Magazine • December 2014
house required the use of tie-down piles with a corrugated steel culvert in the centre. “The piles were 22 metres long with a steel tension bar in the middle,” explains Hopkins. “The torsion force was going to be so strong that we required two compression piles on the one side and two tension piles on the other side. That way, we could balance the tension force.” In this case, the tension piles were 22 metres deep and 750 millimetres in diametre. The compression piles measured 17 metres deep and were 1.2 metres in diametre. The project involved a crew of about a dozen people. More recently, Ledcor was called into action for further piling work. “In March 2014, we got involved in a series of smaller projects that involved some cast-inplace piling work, some sheet piling work and some guide piling work for pipelines,” states Hopkins. “The work was mainly in response to some debottlenecking at the plant site and foundation work for an emergency dump pond.”
Eastern Alberta Transmission Line Project ATCO Electric’s Eastern Alberta Transmission Line project is comprised of 485 kilometres of 500 kilovolt (kV) direct current (DC)
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Bolt frame being lowered into place
line between Brooks in southern Alberta and the Gibbons-Redwater area northeast of Edmonton. Construction on the $1.8 billion project began in December 2012. Ledcor was involved in the construction of the EATL AC/DC connections consisting of 25 steel lattice towers split between two locations on the north and south end of the project. This includes 92 large, cast-in-place piles with diametres ranging from 1.52 to 3.05 metres and depths of up to 18 metres. Each tower along the line required a foundation to support four tower legs. The work also included the installation of 64-driven H-pile foundations, of which eight were battered pile, with a steel pile cap welded to the top of each pile. The towers requiring a cast-in-place founda-
Hoisting the three metre diameter rebar cage
tion also included an anchor bolt setting at the top of the pile used to anchor the tower to the foundation. The assembled anchor bolts consisted of four to 12 anchor bolts, each 55 millimetres in diametre, with lengths ranging from 3.5 to 4.5 millimetres. Ledcor created custom anchor bolt frames and templates that were used to set the anchor bolts in place during a continuous pour. This effective pre-planning facilitated a seamless setting of the anchor bolts to a tolerance of six millimetres, without creating a cold joint in the pile. “Our scope of work on the project included two of the smaller lines that connect to the converter stations,” explains Jerrod Dersch, operations manager, Ledcor. “The first line to the
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Heathfield converter station near Gibbons involved permanent casing up to 18 metre depths with diametres ranging between 2.44 metres and 3.05 metres. The Newell converter station near Brooks required 68 cast-in-place piles for 17 towers in some stiff drilling conditions.” Ledcor started the work in April 2014 and completed it in October of the same year. “The project was unusual in terms of the sheer size of the piles, which were 3.05 metres in diametre and about 18 metres long,” adds Dersch, who says the company had three crews of seven working on the project. “The work also took place in environmentally sensitive areas so we had to conduct the work on access mats in order to minimize impacts to ground cover.” The environmentally sensitive nature of the project also called for Ledcor to establish stringent reporting processes and comply with ATCO Electric’s rigorous equipment cleaning practices on the jobsite to avoid the spread of soil borne disease and noxious weeds when equipment was moved from site to site.
Successful completion The intensive pilings installations completed by Ledcor for ATCO Electric’s EATL project, coupled with the ongoing oil sands mining projects, has demonstrated the breadth and expertise of the Ledcor team in dealing with pilings work of all types and sizes. Both projects highlight the ability of the company to go above and beyond to attain successful completion of what can prove to be a challenging and complex installation. And both projects also showcase the increasingly important role that pilings play in today’s ever-evolving construction industry. n
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PIC Piling Ahead
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How involving contractors early could save your project Submitted by Keller Canada
troducing big costs and potential schedule delays. Though Air Products believed that large amounts of time and effort would be needed to finish the job, Keller Canada was interested to see if there was an easier way. Keller Canada Senior Project Manager Matt Ramsden, along with Project Manager Barry Evans and Superintendent Dwight Hebert, all have significant experience with Continuous Flight Auger (CFA) piling in difficult soils, and knew this technology had the potential to be a massive time and money saver for the project. By collaborating with Air Products’ engineers, they looked deeper into the feasibility of CFA piling on site by installing test piles to confirm their design criteria. Performing a test pile program with geotechnical engineers allowed the team to gain valuable insight into the geotechnical perforKeller CFA rigs ‘face-off’ in the Battle of Production piles
mance of the subsurface soils, and they were able to validate their design recommendations for its conditions. Along with the fact that CFA
When Air Products Canada Limited had to
how their plan could change, involving Keller
piles would perform just as well as Belled CIP
engineer a solution for the foundation piles on
Canada in the early design stage provided sur-
piles, they had the added attractive benefits of
their hydrogen facility in Fort Saskatchewan,
dramatically reducing costs and saving pre-
the soft, sandy sub-surface soil conditions on site created a big challenge for the design team. With the proposed start date for piling getting
cious schedule time.
Looking deeper at the problem
As an additional benefit, Air Products’ initial estimation for on time completion of
closer and potentially forcing them to start be-
A deep understanding of the soil condi-
Belled CIP piles required 14 rigs, which was
hind schedule, they were tasked with finding
tions was integral to finding the right solution
drastically revised down to only two rigs
the money and the resources to produce 925
for the job. With problematic sub-surface soil,
by Keller Canada for CFA pile installation.
Belled Cast-in-Place (CIP) piles – a daunting
Air Products knew they needed an alternate
Though Air Products was initially unsure if
project for any company. Feeling the pressure
solution to prevent their piles from collapsing
two rigs could complete the CFA piles under a
of a complicated job, specialist sub-contractor
inward. The original Belled CIP pile design
tight deadline, the relationship they had devel-
Keller Canada was recommended to them as
required a significant amount of temporary
oped with Keller Canada meant they trusted
a resource. While Air Products wasn’t sure
casing to control the difficult strata on site, in-
them enough to give their plan a shot.
28 PIC Magazine • December 2014
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Feeding the rig the concrete supply
Collaborating as a recipe for success Looking back on the project, it’s easy to see that its success hinged on the collaborative partnership of Air Products and Keller Canada. Upon meeting Air Products, Barry Evans describes his initial impression: “Ground engineering is a risk game; you never know what will happen on a project until you start, so sometimes it’s tough to manage a client’s expectations. [With Air Products], it was as if we’d worked together before. It was seamless.” The Keller Canada project team maintains that much of the success of their working relationship stemmed from the openness of Air Products to collaborate with them early on in the process, allowing them to revise their initial plan. Trusting Keller Canada to work with them on plans before the project even started ultimately boosted productivity while giving Air Products the best bang for their buck. Despite this project’s success, it’s unusual for owners to engage early with contractors, and they tend to be brought on once the project design is already underway. Matt Ramsden explains the issues that can arise from being involved on a project once the design process has already begun: “It’s not typical to be engaged so early during the foundation design stage – projects are usually a long way into the design process or even at final IFC design before we are involved.
Completed CFA piles
At that point, quite often the substructure is already designed and [the client] isn’t willing to change it. We always welcome being involved at the early stages of foundation design when we get the opportunity.”
Saving more than just headaches Ultimately, the success of their early partnership came through in the results. While the initial start date for piling commencement was one month behind before Keller Canada was involved, two rigs, Soilmec SR90 and Soilmec R625, completed 925 CFA piles ahead of a planned 10-week program. All together, the project was completed in just over eight weeks. Bill Elkins, project superintendent for Air Products Canada Limited, speaks to the financial savings of the project: “With Air Products selecting CFA piles, we were able to see a cost reduction of at least 30 per cent related to our originally planned cast in place augured bell pile design.” Along with saving a significant portion of their budget, Elkins and Air Products are also aware of the benefits of bringing in Keller Canada early during the engineering and design phase: “Keller Canada assisted in the engineering and design of the CFA piling on our site. This resulted in a smooth execution from design to construction and an early delivery of contract work to the overall schedule.” According to recent industry studies, a large
portion of all major industrial projects end up significantly over budget and over schedule. For Canada to attract capital and convince owners to build their industrial projects here, owners, engineers, and contractors have the potential to benefit greatly from adopting this collaborative method of project delivery. With a little foresight into the design process, owners can enable innovation, optimize design, reduce costs, and control schedules, improving overall project execution. They say an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, and in this case, the small step of getting a capable contractor engaged early allowed a company to capitalize on innovation and recognize significant cost savings, effectively mitigating any problems along the way. n
About Keller Canada Backed by the largest independent ground engineering company in the world, Keller Canada prides itself in being able to provide full-service geotechnical solutions for any job, no matter what challenges get in the way. Formerly North American Caisson Ltd., a division of North American Construction Group, Keller Canada was acquired by U.K.-based company Keller Group Plc. in 2013, though their management and operations remain the same. With over 30 years of experience piling in Canada’s soil, Keller Canada provides safe, high-quality solutions with hands on experience in all climates, project environments, and soil conditions. Piling Industry Canada • December 2014 29
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PITTSBURGH PO Box 306 Coraopolis, PA 15108 P 412.264.4480 F 412.264.1158
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WASHINGTON, D.C. 6300 Foxley Road Upper Marlboro, MD 20772 P 301.599.1300 F 301.599.1597
TORONTO 34 Anderson Blvd. Uxbridge, ON L9P 0C7 P 905.640.9800 F 905.640.9808
PIC High-Profile Projects
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Berkel & Company Contractors showcase extensive capabilities By Melanie Franner
The San Francisco 49ers’ new Levi’s Stadium and the APM Tunnel Extension at the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport are just two recent projects that called for the proven expertise and experience of the Berkel & Company Contractors Inc. team of professionals. Both projects were prominent in the public eye and both had an added level of complexity that set them apart from the average contract.
Let the games begin Construction of the new $1.2-billion home of the San Francisco 49ers – Levi’s Stadium – began in 2012, with the ribbon-cutting happening July 2014. The cutting-edge stadium features 1.85 million square feet, can seat approximately 68,500 fans and offers 165 luxury suites and 8,500 club seats. One of the more significant features of the new stadium is next-generation design, which includes a 27,000-square-foot green roof and three solar bridges (comprised of hundreds of solar panels) that connect the main parking areas to the stadium. It is expected to be the first United States professional football stadium to achieve LEED Gold certification. 32 PIC Magazine • December 2014
Another interesting feature of the stadium is the fact that it used 3,081 Auger Pressure Grouted Displacement (APGD) piles with lengths of up to 72 feet. Over 3,000 piles were installed during a five-week period, using four displacement piling drill rigs simultaneously. “We needed 12-yard loads of fluid grout every 10 to 15 minutes for the first 3,000 piles to be drilled into the site in order to guarantee a secure foundation for the stadium,” states Brian Zuckerman, vice-president, West Coast Regional Manager, Berkel & Company Contractors. “If laid end to end, those 3,000 piles would stretch more than 31 miles, almost the same distance between the new stadium and the old Candlestick Park.” According to Zuckerman, the piles ranged from between 55 to 72 feet in length. Installing the piles took some extra engineering and co-ordination. The auger machines were used to displace the penetrated earth, the rebar cage was put in and the hole was then immediately filled with fluid grout. The timing had to be perfect. Every APGD hole required approximately four cubic yards of fluid grout. “It was a perfect execution,” says Zucker-
man. “It was very well-coordinated; a real team effort. We had a real spirit of co-operation at every level – from the ownership to the general contractor to all of the design professionals and the trades. Everyone was really trying to make this happen in the quickest and most efficient way possible. It was the best type of working environment to be involved in.”
Cleared for takeoff The Automated People Mover (APM) Tunnel Extension for the Maynard H. Jackson Terminal at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport was a $1.2 billion expansion project that saw the construction of the new Maynard H. Jackson International Terminal. All of the airport’s international operations have been transferred to the new terminal since
canada | U.s. | international its completion in 2012. But the work required to make this a reality was both extensive and complex. And for Berkel & Company Contractors, it necessitated a multi-year, multi-million dollar project that put their proven foundation and shoring support expertise to the test. “We started the project in 2008,” explains Adam Hurley, regional manager, Berkel & Company Contractors. “It was certainly a complex project, one in which we’re proud to have been involved. It was a design/build project that involved a very team-minded approach on the part of ourselves, the structural engineer and the general contractor in order to get the job done in the most efficient and costeffective way possible.” The APM Tunnel Extension necessitated that the APM trains, which are used to transfer passengers from one terminal to another, be extended by approximately half a mile to reach the new International Terminal. Prior to this construction project, the APM tunnel ended at Concourse E. The project itself involved two major components. The first of these was the construction of the APM extension that required an
excavation support system for a 450-foot long and 55-foot deep excavation across Taxiway Dixie. The second required a 900-foot long, 35-foot excavation beneath the basement of the existing Concourse E.
Racing against the clock The excavation across Taxiway Dixie was made that much more complex by the fact that it needed to be done as quickly as possible.
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Piling Industry Canada • December 2014 33
“The biggest driver on this portion of the project was the time that Taxiway Dixie would be closed,” explains Hurley. “The customer was interested in getting it done as quickly as possible because the closure of Taxiway Dixie added about 13 minutes to every arriving and departing international flight. The closure meant that the planes had to take the long way around the terminal to get to their respective gates. As a result, speed was of the essence.” A “cut and cover” method was chosen as the mode of construction for the APM tunnel expansion. It involved a soldier pile and lagging wall with tiebacks to support the excavation. Approximately 100 soldier piles and over 200 tiebacks were installed in the wall under Taxiway Dixie. The shoring aspect of the work involved installing shoring, where possible, with a top elevation 10 feet below the finished grade to eliminate the need for shoring cutoff – a costly procedure because of the depth of cutoff required. The shoring system necessitated some demolition of the existing Taxiway Dixie before completion of the work. Additionally, the soldier piles were installed on a 10-degree batter to reduce earth pressures to allow for the use of smaller piles and fewer tiebacks. “We had one shift working six days a week,” 34 PIC Magazine • December 2014
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states Hurley, who estimates that the APM Tunnel Expansion took about seven weeks in total to complete. “The work required that we install the shoring right up to the active plane gates, which made it a bit more difficult. We had to keep the planes in service at all times. There were two instances, in particular, where the excavation work was within 50 feet of the plane gates. We also had to use shoring to support one of the airport’s main fuel lines and a portion of its utility bridge.”
Confines of Concourse E The excavation work under Concourse E was made more difficult for a couple of reasons. One, it was a confined space with limited headroom. And two, it included the exposure and underpinning of much of the deep foundations below the concourse. “We had to support the structure from underneath in order to complete the 30 foot excavation work,” explains Hurley. “The original structure support consisted of Auger Pressure Grouted (APG) piles that were installed in the early 1990s.” Hurley goes on to explain that the excavation work took place in what was initially the baggage handling area. “It would have been more efficient to have
the entire area open for us to work in but we had to deal with only one small area at a time in order to keep the baggage handling system operational,” he says. “This greatly increased the amount of time we needed to do the work.” The support system used a combined approach of soldier piles and lagging wall with tiebacks, with hand-dug underpinning piers around the majority of the 36 existing columns to minimize the number of exposed columns requiring support. “We initially planned on having to deal with about seven or eight of the original columns but we were able to re-configure our work to reduce that number to four,” adds Hurley. Shotcrete was applied to protect the existing auger-cast piles exposed during the excavation. Additionally, steel pipe piles with walers and tiebacks were installed where the bays between the columns were particularly long. The new support system included over 100 hand-dug underpinning piers as deep as 50 feet, approximately 40 soldier piles and over 400 tiebacks.
Solidifying a reputation With two high-profile projects under their belt, the Berkel & Company Contractors team of professionals have solidified their reputation
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as a capable and versatile provider of deep foundation support systems. The company’s work on
The new support system included over 100 hand-dug underpinning piers as deep as 50 feet, approximately 40 soldier piles and over 400 tiebacks.
the San Francisco 49ers’ Levi’s Stadium and the APM Tunnel Extension at the Hartsfield-Atlanta International Airport have brought to the fore the company’s ability to handle projects of any size and complexity. Better yet, they have managed to bring to fruition two significant projects that will be enjoyed by North Americans for many years yet to come. n
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Quality Canadian talent pools and resources from the UK, UAE and Australia. We have oﬃces in all locations.
Below is a list of live Vacancies. We are always looking out for Professionals with a Proven Track Record in the following ﬁelds:
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Geotechnical Projects: (Geotechnical engineering, Site exploration, Soil stabilisation)
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Piling Industry Canada • December 2014 35
PIC In Real Time
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Liebherr presents simulator for operator training on construction machinery the crawlers of the machine are considered. It offers different training scenarios including basic drilling with Kelly bar, as well as travelling with Kelly bar and CFA. In order to train crawler crane operators in a sophisticated way the simulator provides different environment and training scenarios. Full high-definition flat-screen monitors and high-quality surround sound speakers reproduce the views and sounds typically experienced in the operator’s cab and the motion platform ensures that the operator experiences realistic and accurate movements in a Liebherr simulator.
Focus on safety and efficiency
Training on the Liebherr simulator
Liebherr recently launched a new simulator
pects of the machine’s real functions: the cen-
for deep foundation and lifting applications.
tre of mass changes automatically depending
Based on original machine software and hardware, the Liebherr simulator (LiSIM®) increases both productivity and safety by providing
on the attachment, different soil conditions, and their effects on both drilling physics and
A major benefit of this type of training is the ability to simulate harsh environmental conditions when required. This allows trainees to gain valuable experience in challenging situations without posing any safety risks. The resulting increase in skill allows for safe and productive operation under similar conditions in the real world. The sophisticated LiSIM® environmental and physics replication provides an unprec-
a cost-effective and highly-efficient operator training solution. Finding efficient ways of upgrading machine operator skills at the highest safety level while keeping time and costs at a minimum is a central demand in the construction business nowadays. Liebherr simulations offer sophisticated solutions that tick all the boxes, allowing trainees to significantly improve their skills in a virtual but realistic environment. For the simulator, Liebherr’s successful LB 28 rotary drilling rig with continuous flight auger (CFA), Kelly bar and casings, as well as an LR 1300 crawler crane have been modelled. In addition, a realistic construction site has been virtually created with adjacent buildings, roads, and fences, as well as obstacles such as uneven ground, I-beams, or rocks. The drilling rig simulation replicates all as36 PIC Magazine • December 2014
Cab solution of the new Liebherr simulator for construction machinery
M F OU N
U IP M E N
T ION E DA
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edented level of detail and realism. Thanks to this non-destructible virtual environment, the operator has the opportunity to experience the operational limits of the machine without any consequences, gaining useful experience for highly-efficient operation.
Original software and hardware The installation of original Liebherr control
systems, software, and hardware guarantees a realistic training experience. The control systems reproduce all movements with exact precision both in space and in real-time. LiSIM® is the only realistic virtual solution available in the market for learning the precise handling of Liebherr’s crawler crane and deep foundation machinery.
Configuration depending on customer needs Liebherr simulators are available in three configurations. The classroom solution is easily integrated into existing training centres with the display, seat, and controls mounted on a base and a sturdy display frame. The spacesaving cab solution ensures that the operator becomes familiar with controlling the crane in a real life environment. The easy-to-transport containerized solution houses the simulator in a 40-foot container and features a training room, utility room, and cab simulator. Each of the three models is equipped with multifunctional instructor stations. The development of this advanced training tool is driven by Liebherr’s extensive experience in highly immersive crane operator training, as well as in other simulations – last year the company launched its range of maritime simulators for ship to shore, rubber tyre gantry, mobile harbour, and offshore cranes. n
38 PIC Magazine • December 2014
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PIC Award Winning Work
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Major rehabilitation work for Vancouver’s SeaBus berthing structure By Melanie Franner
When The Coast Mountain Bus Company Ltd. (owned by TransLink) needed to retrofit its aging SeaBus berthing structures and maintenance facility, it settled on the company with the lowest bid. Fortunately, it was also the company that had done several minor retrofits over the past three decades. “This was the biggest renovation project since the construction of the
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facility in the late 1970s,” states Clancy Lannon, project manager, Vancouver Pile Driving Ltd, who adds that work included repairs to multiple major components at the SeaBus maintenance docks and at the north and south SeaBus terminals. “The engineers are hopeful that the retrofit will provide another 25 years of service life.” The renovation project was expansive and involved not only the SeaBus berthing structures but also the maintenance dock. Major component upgrading was required to the SeaBus maintenance dock (fenders, concrete floats, platforms, service piping, and fuelling system). Berth fenders also needed to be replaced, as did corroded structural steel supports at the north and south SeaBus terminals. “One of the biggest challenges was the procurement of replacement parts,” explains Lannon. “The client wanted to replace like parts for like. But several of the components were very difficult to source or were no longer available. We had to get the original manufacturers to go back to the drawing board and re-create some components.” The rehabilitation work took close to a year to complete. But the results stand for themselves – so much so that the Vancouver Regional Construction Association (VRCA) recognized the project as a 2014 sil-
7/8/11 2:05:36 PM
canada | U.s. | international fender structures. The mounting brackets on the fenders had to be replaced, as did the outer fenders on the main structure. “The outer fenders were comprised of steel frames with timber facing,” explains Lannon. “The timber facings were made from exotic African Ekki marine timber and matched the timber used throughout the structure so we had to source the same timber for these components. That required a bit of lead time.”
Fixes for the floating maintenance facility
ver award winner (in the up to $15 million category) in its 26th Annual Awards of Excellence. “The caliber of this year’s entries was excellent and competition amongst the nominees was tough,” states Fiona Famulak, president, VRCA. “In order for a silver or gold award to be declared, the nominee must need and/or exceed specific criteria. For example, did the project complete on time and in budget; did the contractor employee innovative techniques to save time, improve productivity, ensure collaboration across the project team; did the contractor make use of new construction techniques or sustainable materials; did the contractor face challenges and, if so, how did they overcome those challenges? Vancouver Pile Driving Ltd. demonstrated that they met or exceeded many of the specific criteria and is a deserving silver award winner.”
Better berths The West Coast Mountain Bus Company operates three SeaBus ferries that cross the Burrard Inlet between Vancouver and North Vancouver, transporting more than 45,000 passengers annually. The original berthing structure was designed to accommodate two SeaBuses. A third ferry was added in December 2009. The SeaBus berthing structures themselves were in need of several repairs. “All of the mooring dolphins on the berthing structures needed to be changed,” explains Lannon. “There are three mooring dolphins on each of the corners so there were 12 in total. We had to purchase one set of Seibu rubbers or fenders for one corner. We took the old set off, replaced it with the new one and then cleaned and repaired the old one before repeating the same thing with the other set of rubber fenders until they were all like new again.” Lannon adds that Vancouver Pile Driving had to get the original manufacturer of the Seibu rubbers to make a new mold in order to get the exact same component re-made. And the work didn’t end there. “The steel frames that encase rubber fenders had deteriorated over time so we had to build 12 new sets of steel frames,” he says. Vancouver Pile Diving had to engage a crew of divers to drill and epoxy under water in order to remove the old dolphins, install the new holes and then re-anchor the rods to hold the dolphins in place. Another key element in the repair work involved the inner and outer 42 PIC Magazine • December 2014
The second part of the SeaBus rehabilitation project involved the floating maintenance and fuelling dock, which features two berths. It consisted of eight concrete floats, kept in place with concrete-filled steel mooring piles. “We had to jiggle the floats a bit in order to remove each section, one at a time,” explains Lannon, who adds that the largest sections were the maintenance and mechanical ones that were affixed to two concrete floats. “Before we could remove them, we had to build a temporary maintenance facility with floats in order to provide fuel, oil, bilge, water, and sewer services to the SeaBuses.” The old surface material on the original concrete-filled floats was stripped away and the concrete repaired. Some of the timber frames that were in place to prevent the floats from being damaged by the SeaBuses were also in need of repair. “We actually had to replace some of the timber frames that had been damaged by decay,” says Lannon. “They were difficult to deal with because some were as long as 12 by 12 by 24 feet in size.”
All in a day’s work Although the SeaBus berthing structure and maintenance repair facility appeared to be a simple project involving the repair and replacement of different components, it was made more difficult by the working environment and the age of the components, which made them hard to source. Plus, the project was further complicated by the need to keep the facility fully operational during the entire renovation project. “Keeping the facility open during the repair work was a bit of a challenge,” admits Lannon. “It was essential that the ferry service continue without interruption. Plus, we were focused on keeping safety a priority throughout the entire project. We would restrict our work to one side of the structure at a time, knowing that the SeaBus had the right of way at all times.” The tight working conditions also posed some challenges. “There were some really close tolerances on the mooring fenders, in particular,” says Lannon. “We had to get a big crane in for that part of the work because of the weight of the components.” The $7.5-million project with all its unique challenges certainly deserved its industry accolades. “I was really surprised to hear about the award,” concludes Lannon. “I never think about awards when I am on a job. I’ve been doing this type of work for over 30 years now and it’s great to be recognized by industry. At the same time, this project owes its success to everyone who worked on it. All of the people worked really hard to get it done. There was some great teamwork and co-ordination by everyone – the subtrades, the suppliers, the mechanical and electrical guys, and the divers. Everyone pulled together and worked as a team.” n
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PIC First Subsea Piling Services Operation Goes to Plan
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Technip in Norway Reaps Benefits of New Piling Technology from CIS Group Innovative solution saves time, boosts vessel productivity
Conductor Installation Services Ltd (CIS), an Acteon company that provides hammer services to install conductors and drive piles, completed its first subsea piling services contract. CIS used its new remotely operated Subsea Piling System, which makes it possible to drive piles as large as 36 inches in diameter, in water depths to 300 metres. The piles were driven to permanently secure two subsea structures to the seabed and to initiate three rigid pipelines being installed by customer Technip on the Bøyla Development project offshore Norway. Following preparation and testing of all equipment at its base in Great Yarmouth, England, CIS mobilised the full Subsea Piling System to Haugesund, Norway. It was then loaded onto the support vessel, from which the fourmember CIS crew would carry out all subsea piling operations remotely using a control unit and monitoring system. In late spring 2014, the team set out with all equipment to the Bøyla field. Working as weather permitted in a maximum water depth of 120 metres, CIS successfully drove the three 44 PIC Magazine • December 2014
30-inch Initiation anchor piles, four 30-inch manifold piles, and four 24-inch pipeline end manifold (PLEM) piles. All piles were successfully driven into the seabed to their respective target depths, ranging from 10 metres to 23 metres. The subsea operation was successfully completed in April 2014, well within the requisite timeframe.
The scope of work was to install two different sizes of piles, which required re-dressing the pile-driving hammer to accommodate the second size of piles to be driven. Instead of transporting the hammer on the support vessel back to port to be re-dressed onshore, CIS and Technip worked together to formulate a more efficient solution to safely re-dress the hammer on the vessel in the field. By doing so, the time invested in this task was reduced, increasing vessel productivity by allowing it to remain in the field to carry out other work offshore. Throughout the operation, the Subsea Piling System performed as intended, confirming that the new technology reliably delivers substantial benefits.
New system “hits the ground running” “The success of this operation for Technip is particularly meaningful for CIS on many
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levels,” says Andy Penman, group managing director of CIS. “In light of the years invested in developing the Subsea Piling System, it’s extremely satisfying that it really ‘hit the ground running,’ performing flawlessly during its very first commercial operation. Coupled with the fact that it was also the first time that CIS has worked for Technip in Norway, it was a great opportunity to form the beginnings of a new relationship with them. Collaborating with Technip on a way to re-dress the hammer in the field illustrates that each team is highly creative and focused on ways to increase productivity, with safety in mind.”
accurately positioned, the pile will be driven into the seabed by the hammer until it reaches its target depth.
Modular and environmentally friendly Easy to assemble and deploy, the Subsea Piling System is comprised of several primary components. These include a hydraulic ham-
mer dressed for working subsea, a control unit equipped with instrumentation and technology used to carry out and monitor the piling process, a power unit, hydraulic hose and cable winches that carry up to 300 metres of hoses or cable, and an upending frame. In addition to its unique constant-tensioning winches, when using the Subsea Piling System to drive piles, CIS uses only the highest quality of biodegrad-
Subsea Piling System “What sets the Subsea Piling System apart is that it features self-tensioning hydraulic winches that lower and raise the hydraulic hoses and electrical cables that connect to the hammer,” explains Penman. “While other systems rely upon technicians to carry out this critical action by manually operating the winches, the constant-tensioning capability of the new subsea piling system’s winches means that they automatically heave and lower according to sea conditions. In essence, we have removed the guesswork and risk of human error, making the process more efficient, reliable, and much, much safer.” The subsea piling process is carried out by an experienced CIS engineer from a control unit and monitoring system located on-board a nearby vessel. A hydraulic hammer, connected via an electronic umbilical cable to the control system, is lowered into the water and placed directly over the subsea pile. Once it is
+1(281) 205-7261 | email@example.com www.escsteelinc.com Piling Industry Canada • December 2014 45
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About Conductor Installation Services
able hydraulic oil to prevent against negative impact on the environment in the event of oil leakage. “The CIS remotely-operated piling method offers complete control so that the level of accuracy achieved by every blow of the hammer is much greater,” says James Chadd, technical sales manager for the CIS Group. “The more accurate it is, the less time it takes to drive the pile. Put simply, it’s faster, much more efficient, and costs less.” Launched in November 2013, CIS has already begun to establish a foothold in the offshore subsea European market, as illustrated by the operation for Technip in Norway. CIS, a member of Acteon’s Conductors, Risers and Flowlines group, provides conductor and pile installation services associated with construction projects carried out in the global oil and gas industry. These services are carried out both onshore and offshore to, for example, create foundations for new wells, platforms, bridges, and jetties. The range of services provided by CIS supports the Acteon Group’s commitment to defining subsea services across a range of interconnected disciplines. 46 PIC Magazine • December 2014
Conductor Installation Services Ltd (CIS), an Acteon Company, is the only company that is solely dedicated to the process of installing conductors and piles. CIS takes responsibility for full project management for installing conductors anywhere in the world. The company’s primary objective is to employ hammer services to install conductors and drive piles with the highest standard of structural integrity, reliably and safely. CIS also strives to reduce the cost of conductor and pile installation by developing more efficient work processes and using the latest state-of-the-art technology. Since it was founded in Great Yarmouth, England in 2005, CIS has built an impressive track record of successful operations carried out in every major oil and gas-producing region. In recognition of the fact that it had not incurred a single lost time incident (LTI) for nine consecutive years and had been awarded
the prestigious Gold Award for Occupation Health and Safety for five consecutive years, CIS received the Gold Medal for Occupational Health and Safety 2014 from the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA). It is the highest award for safety in the United Kingdom. n
About Acteon Acteon companies provide mooring, foundation, riser, conductor, flowline and marine electronics products and services supported by strong engineering and project management capabilities. Acteon’s companies are 2H Offshore, Aquatic, Claxton, Conductor Installation Services (CIS), Core Grouting Services, Fluke Subsea, InterAct, InterMoor, J2 Subsea, Large Diameter Drilling (LDD), LM Handling, Menck, Mirage Machines, NCS Survey, Offshore Installation Services (OIS), Probe, Pulse Structural Monitoring, Seatronics, Subsea Riser Products (SRP), and TEAM Energy Resources.
PIC Right on Track
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Thiess Pty Ltd. brings rail to North Brisbane suburbs By Michael Schwartz
Train passengers north of Brisbane will soon have the opportunity to travel on a new 12.6 kilometre section of railway between the suburbs of Petrie and Kippa-Ring. Thiess Pty Ltd. is designing and building the project, which is expected to be completed by late 2016. The overall estimated value is $988 million, with the cost of the piling approximating to two per cent of project value. Funding of the Moreton Bay Rail Project will come from the Australian Government ($583 million), the Queensland Government ($300 million), and Moreton Bay Regional Council ($105 million). To describe the railway route as varied is an understatement. There are six new stations and 22 bridges – each needing its own piling – as the line also crosses multiple roads, three waterways, and several low-lying areas. More specifically, the elevator towers at the stations also require their own piling specification. Thiess Pty Ltd. is a subsidiary of Leighton Holdings and is working with designers Aurecon, AECOM and Hassall, and geotechnical subcontractor Golder Associates.
Piling speeds and dimensions The Moreton Bay Rail Project is implementing both bored and driven piling methods during construction of bridges and stations. On average, eight piles per day have been completed, with a best rate of 11 in one day, and the total coming to 234 piles. Andrew Large, project director, Moreton Bay Rail, 48 PIC Magazine • December 2014
elaborates, “The blow rates of the piling vary, depending on the drop height required. Generally we use between 200 millimetre to 600 millimetre drop with the 10 tonne hammer. The harder the driving, the higher the drop height required. The project uses solely a hydraulic hammer. Impact energy was monitored through PDA/CAPWAP End of Drive testing on every third pier (with restrike tests on every other pier). Reports are provided by pile testers which included all tension stress mapping.” Generally the piling activities are on schedule. The start dates have been design-dependent and most of the bridges have been able to commence on their anticipated programmed dates. The bored piles vary from 900 millimetres in diameter to 2,100 millimetres in diameter depending upon the loads and size of the bridge. The driven pile sets, all 550 millimetre octagonals, comprise three four-metre-wide rail bridge piers and abutments, eight eightmetre-wide rail bridge piers and abutments, and three four-metre-wide shared path piers and abutments. The only sheet piling used on the project was for temporary platform stability at Saltwater Creek. It is not part of the permanent design. All machinery used on the project is subcontractor owned and operated. Thiess has used two main subcontract companies for driven and bored pile installation. At one location, ground conditions have required construction of a temporary engineered
piling platform, and there are some tidal constraints at Saltwater Creek and Rothwell. The geology has generally been as identified via the bore log investigations completed for the design. The Moreton Bay Rail Project corridor has been generally accessible with no out-of-theordinary construction constraints. In addition, the specialized project team has been able to undertake piling where required without any major interruptions in conjunction with other work in the project sites. The Moreton Bay Region is home to 350,000 people, and is one of the fastest-growing areas of Australia – by 2031 that population is expected to grow to 500,000. In addition to the benefits from an enhanced rail transportation infrastructure, there are environmental advantages. For example, the railway will provide a fast alternative to car travel into Brisbane, with travel time savings of up to 15 minutes in peak periods, reduced carbon emissions via sustainable and active transport options (every full train on the new line will take about 600 cars off the road). What is more, there will be a shared path for cyclists and pedestrians between Petrie and Kippa-Ring, providing connectivity along the corridor and providing access to all stations, as well as better access to major employment centres both within and outside the Moreton Bay region. This latter will help attract investment to the area and create business opportunities and jobs. n
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Drive Easy Flatiron Construction Corporation utilizes APE vibratory and diesel hammers on Edmonton’s Northeast Anthony Henday Drive project
As one of the most heavily used roadways in Edmonton, carrying thousands of motorists on a daily basis, Anthony Henday Drive is vital to city transportation. And as more and more commuters hit the road, they are anxiously awaiting the opening of the northeast leg, the final portion of the ring road. The $1.8-billion project – the largest single contract to date for Alberta Transportation – is expected to open in October 2016. This project is of the upmost importance as this will be the completion of the ring road connecting the north and south sections of the Anthony Henday Drive, allowing for better travel times for commuters in the greater Edmonton area. Facilitating the connection to Yellowhead trail, both east and west, will also be a constructive result of the work. Global News Edmonton estimates upwards of 1,500 people will work a total of 1.4 million hours across 17 sites. In addition, 500 million cubic metres of dirt will be moved this construction season alone – that works out to be just shy of 170,000 truck loads of dirt. One of the biggest undertakings of the leg is the amount of overpass and bridge work needed. The project will include nine interchanges, two road flyovers, eight rail crossing flyovers,
and two bridges across the North Saskatchewan River, for a total of 47 bridge structures. Flatiron Construction Corporation, with the use of both APE vibratory and diesel hammers has been able to successfully accommodate their pile driving requirements on the very ambitious Anthony Henday project. Vibratory Driver/Extractors, (vibros) including APE model 200-6’s the APE Model 600 “King Kong” were deployed to the worksite outside Edmonton, as well as D-50 and D-100 series diesel hammers for installation of foundation and shoring works. "Since spring 2012, on the Northeast Anthony Henday Drive project, APE's diesel impact hammers (D-50 & D-100) were used to install 76,000 metres of driven H-piles; their vibratory hammer (200-6) was used to drive sheet piles supporting a 2,500m2 area; and their 200-6 and 600 Model vibratory hammers were used to install 14 steel caissons, 1,500-millimetre and 1,800-millimetre-diameter for sign foundations,” states Testi Abdella, field engineer for the Flatiron-Dragados-Aecon-Lafarge JV. In addition to the shoring and sign foundations, the vibros were utilized for casings for bridge work.
The full Northeast Anthony Henday Drive project will include 18 kilometres of reconstructed six- and eight-lane divided freeway, nine kilometres of new six- and eight-lane divided freeway, nine service interchanges, seven grade separations and twin river bridge structures. The 27 kilometre northeast leg of the ring road will be free-flow (there will be no traffic lights on the freeway). The initial sections of the ring road were built in the 1970s and the 1990s and the current Anthony Henday Drive project began in 2000 with the construction of the southwest section. “APE's team in Edmonton have been instrumental at providing both on and off-site assistance in helping solve technical issues that have surfaced over the course of the project. They have managed to accommodate our equipment needs in a timely fashion and their reps were always available to provide alternative solutions when called upon,” says Mike Voss, crane and pile driving superintendent for the Northeast Anthony Henday Drive project, Flatiron-Dragados-Aecon-Lafarge JV. n Read more about the overall project at www.northeastanthonyhenday.com Piling Industry Canada • December 2014 49
PIC Old is New
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Historic building among first challenges of Alaska Way Viaduct tunnel replacement By Melanie Franner
The Alaskan Way Viaduct (SR 99) has acted as a significant transportation corridor for downtown Seattle since its inception in the 1950s. The 2001 Nisqually earthquake served to hasten the daily wear and tear of the 3.2-kilometre, double-tiered viaduct to the point where an alternative plan was required. The result? The Alaskan Way Viaduct and Seawall Replacement program, which is being led by the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT), in partnership with the Federal Highway Administration, King County, the City of Seattle, and the Port of Seattle. The project involves a 2.7-kilometre bored tunnel with an approximate outside diametre of 17.5 metres. The tunnel will decline underground and cross under the existing Alaskan 50 PIC Magazine â€˘ December 2014
canada | U.s. | international
From there, it was a hop, skip, and a jump to decide on the use of micropiles. “We knew that the pile work had to be done inside the existing building and it was a relatively small space to work in,” says Robertson. “It came down to using driven pin piles or micropiles. And pin piles weren’t an option because of the resulting vibration.” Shannon & Wilson had extensive experience with micropiles and the team was confident that the piles could do the job. “We knew we could get good capacity on the smaller piles,” notes Robertson.
Way Viaduct (AWV) to a depth of about 82 metres (at its deepest point) below street level. Construction of the tunnel begins at the south end of Seattle’s downtown and continue to the west. Sitting atop of the anticipated start of tunnel construction is the historic Western Building, a six-storey, concrete structure built in 1910, and one that has since fallen into disrepair. “The Western Building is one of many projects vital to the success of the overall program to replace the Alaskan Way Viaduct,” states Laura Newborn, AWV media relations manager. “The building is over 100 years old and part of the historic fabric of Seattle’s Pioneer Square District.”
Everything old is new again Once the Western Building had been identified as needing extensive repairs prior to the start of any tunnel excavation, the work began. At the heart of this work was Shannon & Wilson Inc., a geotechnical engineering firm founded in 1954. “The building was over 100 years old and was supported by approximately 600 driven timber piles,” explains Chris Robertson, vicepresident, Shannon & Wilson. “The building had obvious signs of distress from settlement. The original plan was to demolish the building before tunnelling began underneath it. But
there was a public movement to save the building if we could.” The consulting company pored over historical drawings and the borings around the exterior of the building to glean what information they could. “We were pretty certain that the timber piles were going to be a problem,” says Robertson. “Previous seawall work that our firm had done led us to believe that many of the timber piles would be badly deteriorated.” The company ended up taking out some of the floor slabs in the building and excavating holes below to get a look at the piles. “We exposed some timber piles under the pile caps and found that generally, the portions of the piles that were below groundwater were in pretty good condition, as were the portions above groundwater. But in those areas where the groundwater levels fluctuated, the piles were in poor condition or completely rotted.” Identifying which of the 600 piles needed work and which didn’t was an option – but a laborious and lengthy one. “Scheduling was a bit of an issue,” states Todd LaVielle, senior geotechnical engineer, Shannon & Wilson. “If we needed to save what piles we could, it would be a matter of evaluating them on a one-on-one basis. This project needed to get done before the start of the tunnel work. So we ultimately decided to go with putting in a new foundation.”
Still, the project proved challenging for a number of reasons. “We had a very limited depth of bearing soil beneath the 40 feet of fill to work with because the tunnel was going to go underneath,” explains Robertson. “We only had about 10 feet to work with.” In total, the project involved 252 micropiles with 250 milimetre diametre casings. The design load for the micropiles was 440 kN (100 kips) each. “Headroom was a bit of an issue,” explains LaVielle. “Everyone knew from the start that it was going to involve pretty tight working conditions. The contractor had work between the existing pile caps so there was a lot of coordination involved. Plus, there was a bit more groundwater than we had anticipated in some areas.” The company charged with installing the micropiles was Washington-based DBM Contractors Inc. “The installation of micropiles is one of our specialties,” says Greg Radom, project manager, DBM Contractors. “So we were familiar with the type of the work involved.” The company was contracted to perform the installation of 3,500 metres (11,500 feet) of micropiles over a period of approximately four months. “We had to shorten the mast of the drills in order to fit the machines into the available work space,” says Radom. “In some areas, we had roughly 12 feet of headroom. In others, we had 15 feet.” DBM Contractors also had to deal with the shortage of ventilation in such a confined space. The footprint of the Western Building is approximately 30 metres by 30 metres. Piling Industry Canada • December 2014 51
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relationships with contractors to foster good communication and open discussion about the best ways to accomplish the work,” she says. “In this case, the work had to be accomplished expeditiously to meet an aggressive tunneling schedule. There was extensive planning, good co-operation and good communication between all parties involved, including the owner of the Western Building, to make for a successful outcome.” Work on US$3.1 billion Alaskan Way Viaduct and Seawall Replacement project involves some 20 separate projects. Construction on “GLY Construction, the general contractor on the project, installed blowers in the basement working areas,” adds Radom. “They also cut several holes in the side of the building to create vent holes up to the street level.” The existing timber piles also presented another obstacle to DBM Contractors. Although care was taken to stake out the location of the existing timber piles in order to avoid them, some inevitably were caught in the crosshairs. “We encountered quite a lot of timber obstructions,” admits Radom. “We just had to drill through them, which took an extended period of time and contributed to the wear and tear on our machines.” The company used two drill rigs and two excavators simultaneously. 52 PIC Magazine • December 2014
One for all and all for one The new foundation support that was provided for the Western Building proved to be an example of good team leadership and cooperation. “It was a good partnership all around,” notes LaVielle. “WSDOT basically needed to provide enough support for the building to withstand the tunneling underneath it. And the building owner knew that he had a deficit building in need of some major repairs. We all worked toward the common goal of doing what was necessary to keep the Alaskan Way Viaduct and Seawall Replacement project on schedule.” AWV’s Newborn re-affirms the sense of teamwork experienced by those who worked on the Western Building project. “It’s always critical to have good working
the first project, viaduct column stabilization, began in 2008. The actual tunneling machine – the largest diametre-tunneling machine in the world – arrived in Seattle in 2013. Work on the Western Building foundation took place in 2012, prior to the start of the actual tunnelling, which began in 2013. “The Western Building is the first building above the tunnel’s path,” concludes Newborn. “It was in such a terrible state of disrepair, the City of Seattle had red-tagged it as unsafe for occupancy. The work completed as a result of the Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement program has made the building suitable for use again, assured it will endure the potential effects of tunnelling, and preserved its historic character.” All in all, a job well done. n
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CANADA SALES & SERVICE Canadian Pile Driving Equipment Inc. | 3801-53 Ave. Lacombe, AB, T4L 2L6 | Tel: +1 403 782 1900 firstname.lastname@example.org | www.canadianpiledrivingequipment.com
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After impressing PotashCorp on the Picadilly Mine Project in New Brunswick, Aecon Mining Construction Services was awarded its largest, single mining contract to date and promptly followed its client west to Saskatchewan. In 2014, the Aecon teams wrapped up work on a world-class processing facility that will help the potash giant meet its global demand. Anyone familiar with Rocanville, Saskatchewan will instantly recognize the signature red and white vertical stripes that adorn PotashCorp’s mine site buildings east of town. For 40 years, PotashCorp has been extracting and processing potash, phosphate, and nitrogen for a global market that heavily relies on these fertilizer products to keep farmland soil
of potash, and third largest producer of nitrogen and phosphate in the world. Supplying so much of the world’s potash production from its Canadian operations has translated into substantial growth for the company’s mining facilities in Rocanville, located some 230 kilometres east of the provincial capital. “Without a doubt, being awarded and entrusted with this size of a contract by PotashCorp had a lot to do with our strong operational and safety performance on the Picadilly project,” notes Phil Ward, executive vicepresident, Aecon Mining. “We developed a great working relationship with the client and AMEC, the engineering firm, on that job, and we’re thrilled to be working with them again.”
tion. The Rocanville potash mill differs in a major way from other milling operations: Rather than being spread out like a traditional horizontal mill, it’s constructed vertically, standing just over 60 metres tall and featuring eight operational floors. “For sure the vertical nature of this mill presented us with huge logistical challenges,” says John Salter, vice-president, Aecon Mining and Construction Services, stressing the importance of careful planning and coordination on such a large-scale job. “With all the different levels on this job, we found the biggest challenge was just trying to execute the work around a congestion of workers on the same level at the same time. Scheduling, delivering and maneuvering the equipment, materials
healthy and productive. Today, the company
A job like no other
and supplies was a feat in itself, not to men-
has put the town of Rocanville on the map.
In April 2012, Aecon first mobilized on-site and began working on the new mill installa-
tion the logistics and processes needed for safe
PotashCorp is the largest producer by capacity 54 PIC Magazine • December 2014
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Labour was another challenge, as is often the case when undertaking major projects in smaller communities and remote regions. With 750 workers required for this job, the Rocanville project was no exception, especially with Aecon self-performing the majority of the work. Some 75 key, experienced managers and supervisors were brought on site to oversee the project and were challenged to ramp up quickly with a team of skilled tradespeople. “As you can imagine, a project of this size quickly depletes all resources from the local union halls in southern Saskatchewan,” says Roger Archambault, senior project manager. “As a matter of fact, only 25 per cent of the required labour came from local halls. The remaining balance came from journeymen, who travelled from all across the country.” Ensuring the work was safely executed was high on the priority list. When asked how difficult it was to implement Aecon’s Safety First culture on site, Jason Price, site safety manager, admits it was a challenge in the beginning. “Bringing over 700 workers from all across the country translates into a lot of diversity when it comes to safety culture. We had all sorts of trades on site at the same time. Everyone had to be trained and educated on Aecon’s safety practices, cooperating with PotashCorp’s safety team, to ensure we were all on the same page.”
work we’ve performed on this contract shows the level of demand for the type of work we do.” Aecon Mining Construction Services has since been awarded several key process installations for the K+S Early Cavern Development and Well Pads portions of the Legacy Project. These combined contracts Aecon Mining holds with K+S Potash Canada are quite significant.
Aecon Mining proudly delivers all of their client’s needs, from the inception of a project to end-of-project reclamation, and everything in between. The mining industry has become a major industry in Canada, which still has a lot of growth ahead, and Aecon Mining is positioned to play a major role in the development and maintenance of current and future mines. n
K+S potash work Having already completed several highprofile piling jobs since its formation, Aecon Mining was ready to roll last summer when news broke that the group had been awarded a major contract for client K+S Potash Canada’s Legacy Mine, the first new greenfield potash mine to be built in Saskatchewan in nearly 40 years. Aecon Mining was on tap for the installation of more than 2,000 piles to support the numerous buildings required to process the potash brought in from the mine. The evaporation process plant alone, as the site’s single largest location, required 594 piles. All told, some 2,400 bell piles were drilled, cleaned, and poured for the future location of Legacy Mine. By industry standards, a piling project of this magnitude is “quite the undertaking” says Lars Richter, Aecon Mining Services group general manager. “The amount of Piling Industry Canada • December 2014 55
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Lau Jan nchin 20 uary g 15
Get Listed in Piling Industry Canada’s New Coil-Bound Directory Please complete this form and fax back to DEL Communications Inc.
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56 PIC Magazine • December 2014
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INDEX TO ADVERTISERS
American Piledriving Equipment 37 Arntzen Corporation 40 Atlas Tube Jmc Steel Group 4 Bauer-Pileco 13 Bay Shore Systems, Inc. 11 Bermingham Foundation Solutions 9 Canadian Pile Driving Equipment Inc. 39 Dominion Pipe & Piling IFC Eca Canada 30-31 Esc Steel Inc. 45 Geokon, Incorporated 33 Gilbert Products Inc. 43 Hammer & Steel, Inc. OBC Hcm Contractors, Inc. 17 Hercules Machinery Corporation 23, 25, 27 Independence Tube Corporation 3 Instantel 18 Junttan Oy 53 Liebherr Werk Nenzing Gmbh 47
Loadtest 19 Northstar Inc.
Pile Dynamics Inc.
Piledrivers Local Union 2404
Platinum Grover International Inc.
Roll Form Group
Rst Instruments Ltd.
Soilmec North America
Soilmec North America C/o Convey Inc
Ssa Recruitment Ltd. Tadano Mantis Corporation
Verbeek Management Services
Waterloo Barrier Inc.
Westco Drilling & Piles Ltd.
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