Water inflows are a major challenge in tunnelling and particularly difficult to predict in geological settings consisting of heterogeneous sedimentary rock formations with complex tectonic structure. For a high-speed railway line between Bologna and Florence (Italy), a series of seven railway tunnels was drilled through turbiditic formations, ranging from pelitic rocks with thin arenitic layers over sequences including thick-bedded sandstone to calcareous rocks showing chemical dissolution phenomena (karstification). The tunnels were built as draining tunnels and caused significant impacts, such as drying of springs and base-flow losses at mountain streams. A comprehensive hydrological monitoring programme and four multi-tracer test were done, focusing on four sections of the tunnel system. The tracer tests delivered unprecedented data on groundwater flow and transport in turbiditic aquifers and made it possible to better characterize the differential impacts of tunnel drainage along a geological gradient. The impact radius is 200 m in the thin-bedded sequences but reaches 2.3-4.0 km in calcareous and thick-bedded arenitic turbidites. Linear flow velocities, as determined from the peaks of the tracer breakthrough curves, range from 3.6 m/day in the thin-bedded turbidites to 39 m/day in the calcareous rocks (average values from the four test sites). At several places, discrete fault zones were identified as main hydraulic pathways between impacted streams and draining tunnels. This case shows that ignoring the hydrogeological conditions in construction projects can cause terrible damage, and the study presents an approach to better predict hydraulic impacts of draining tunnels in complex sedimentary rock settings.

Differential Hydrogeological Effects of Draining Tunnels Through the Northern Apennines, Italy

GARGINI, ALESSANDRO;
2014

Abstract

Water inflows are a major challenge in tunnelling and particularly difficult to predict in geological settings consisting of heterogeneous sedimentary rock formations with complex tectonic structure. For a high-speed railway line between Bologna and Florence (Italy), a series of seven railway tunnels was drilled through turbiditic formations, ranging from pelitic rocks with thin arenitic layers over sequences including thick-bedded sandstone to calcareous rocks showing chemical dissolution phenomena (karstification). The tunnels were built as draining tunnels and caused significant impacts, such as drying of springs and base-flow losses at mountain streams. A comprehensive hydrological monitoring programme and four multi-tracer test were done, focusing on four sections of the tunnel system. The tracer tests delivered unprecedented data on groundwater flow and transport in turbiditic aquifers and made it possible to better characterize the differential impacts of tunnel drainage along a geological gradient. The impact radius is 200 m in the thin-bedded sequences but reaches 2.3-4.0 km in calcareous and thick-bedded arenitic turbidites. Linear flow velocities, as determined from the peaks of the tracer breakthrough curves, range from 3.6 m/day in the thin-bedded turbidites to 39 m/day in the calcareous rocks (average values from the four test sites). At several places, discrete fault zones were identified as main hydraulic pathways between impacted streams and draining tunnels. This case shows that ignoring the hydrogeological conditions in construction projects can cause terrible damage, and the study presents an approach to better predict hydraulic impacts of draining tunnels in complex sedimentary rock settings.
ROCK MECHANICS AND ROCK ENGINEERING
Valentina Vincenzi;Alessandro Gargini;Nico Goldscheider;Leonardo Piccinini
File in questo prodotto:
Eventuali allegati, non sono esposti

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11585/152514
 Attenzione

Attenzione! I dati visualizzati non sono stati sottoposti a validazione da parte dell'ateneo

Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? ND
  • Scopus 24
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 19
social impact