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RESEARCH AREAS

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specialties

hydroGEOlogy

The hydrogeology group focuses on the behaviour and remediation of contaminants in groundwater, with specific applications in fractured rock, fractured clay, and unconsolidated porous media. Investigation of regional groundwater flow and the sustainable use of groundwater resources is also conducted. Extensive use is made of compositional numerical simulation, laboratory experimentation, and field characterization methods. The group has established links with other research organizations word wide, government agencies, and private industry.

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GEOtechnical

Geotechnical Engineering involves the application of soil mechanics, rock mechanics and engineering geology to solve soil and rock engineering problems such as design of foundations, slopes, excavations, dams, tunnels and other Civil, Mining and Environmental engineering works involving the mechanical response of the ground and the water within it.

Research work being undertaken in the GeoEngineering Centre includes studies on shallow and deep foundations, tunnels and deep excavations, pipes, culverts and other buried infrastructure, and geotechnical Earthquake Engineering.

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GEOenvironmental

Geoenvironmental Engineering is the multidisciplinary application of geotechnical engineering, hydrogeology and geochemistry to solve modern-day environmental problems related to soil and water pollution. World-renowned expertise in solid waste landfills resides at the GeoEngineering Centre. Subsurface NAPL contamination and remediation, geochemistry of mine tailings, and geosynthetic barrier systems are examples of the geoenvironmental research areas underway at the GeoEngineering Centre.

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GEOmechanics

Geomechanics involves the response of insitu earth materials to the presence or application of deforming forces. It embraces the fundamentals of soil mechanics, rock mechanics, material science and structural geology. Geomechanical Engineering involves the application of these disciplines to the interpretation of geometry and distribution of orebodies and hydrocarbon resources, the assessment of hazards associated with geological structure, earth stresses and deforming geomaterials. It also involves the design of surface and underground openings to account for the influence of natural and induced stresses.

Research work being undertaken in the GeoEngineering Centre includes the study of issues related to rockmass strength and yield response, site investigation, the design of surface and underground works for mining and tunnelling, long term stability of abandoned mine workings, the design of undergound support, the numerical simulation of soil and rock response to stress and to blasting, the study of mining induced seismicity, and risk management related to worker and public exposure to hazards related to geomechanics.

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GEOsynthetics

Geosynthetics are planar, polymeric materials used in contact with soil/rock and/or any other geotechnical material in civil engineering applications. They include geotextiles, geogrids, geomembranes, geosynthetic clay liners, geonets, geopipes, geofoams, prefabricted vertical drains and other products placed in contact with soil to separate, filter, reinforce, protect, drain or resist drainage in a range of geotechnical and geoenvironmental applications.

Research work being undertaken in the GeoEngineering Centre includes studies on reinforcement to enhance the stability of walls, foundations, tunnels and embankments, on the use of geomembranes and geosynthetic clay liners to limit contaminant migration from municipal and hazardous waste landfills and as barrier systems for hydrocarbon contaminated soils, and on new and repaired pipes and manholes.

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GEOchemistry

Geochemistry involves understanding the chemical composition and interaction of earth materials such as natural and contaminated waters, sediments and rocks. Within the Geoengineering Centre, research in geochemistry includes studies of the long-term stability of mine waste including kimberlite tailings, acid rock drainage and arsenic-rich gold mine tailings, subsurface NAPL contmaination and migration, and groundwater tracer migration studies.

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