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Assessing climate effects on railway earthworks using MASWNormal access

Authors: S. Donohue, D.A. Gunn, P. Bergamo, E. Hughes, B. Dashwood, S. Uhlemann, J.E. Chambers and D. Ward
Event name: SAGEEP 2015 - 28th Annual Symposium on the Application of Geophysics to Engineering and Environmental Problems
Session: Best of EAGE-Athens 2014
Publication date: 22 March 2015
Organisations: EEGS
Language: English
Info: Extended abstract, PDF ( 1.41Mb )

Many parts of the UK’s rail network were constructed in the mid-19th century long before the advent of modern construction standards. Historic levels of low investment, poor maintenance strategies and the deleterious effects of climate change have resulted in critical elements of the rail network being at significant risk of failure. The majority of failures which have occurred over recent years have been triggered by extreme weather events. Advance assessment and remediation of earthworks is, however, significantly less costly than dealing with failures reactively. It is therefore crucial that appropriate approaches for assessment of the stability of earthworks are developed, so that repair work can be better targeted and failures avoided wherever possible. This extended abstract briefly discusses some preliminary results from an ongoing geophysical research project being carried out in order to study the impact of climate or seasonal weather variations on the stability of a century old railway embankment on the Gloucestershire Warwickshire steam railway line in Southern England.

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