By John A. Hudson
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Extra resources for Comprehensive rock engineering/ 3, Rock Testing and Site Characterization. Principles, Practice and Projects
Rock mass investigations for hydroengineering in general are reviewed by Professor Thiel and Dr Zabuski in Chapter 35 (this volume). The ten most important rock properties are: in situ stress, discontinuity persistence, topographic factors, presence of faults or folds, location of tunnel, discontinuity aperture, rock mass geometry, discontinuity fill, tunnel water pressure, and preexisting water conditions. These are not the only rock properties but they can be considered as the ten most important .
Anyone who has attempted to measure the rock stress in the field will understand the concern. The four main stress measurement methods as recommended by the ISRM all measure different parts of the stress tensor. It is essential to understand how to integrate these measurements into a complete stress tensor and how to reduce the data correctly and then to realize what the data mean when it is known that the stress is highly likely to be affected by all the rock discontinuities. I would go so far as to say that one can predict from the rock mass structure and the diagrams that have already been presented in this chapter that, if one measures the stress along a line in a rock mass, a high variation in stress measurements will generally be expected - mainly because of the influence of the discontinuities.
Is it possible to determine orientations of the three orthogonal shear stresses such that all the normal stresses vanish, giving three complementary principal shear stresses? ) The more one looks into rock stress, the more problems one unearths. This is not to say that we should not continue in our endeavors to understand in situ rock stress; in fact, one cannot understand the rock engineering, in theory or practice, without having a knowledge of the rock stress. Thus, I strongly advise all readers to read the chapters on rock stress in this volume referred to earlier.