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Management of infra- and geostructures

The new road tunnel of Karnainen on the new motorway E18.

Competence

VTT conducts research and development into the design of foundation structures and products, product acceptability, and takes part in the preparation of codes of practice. Experience of the dynamic behaviour of foundations and earth structures under the influence of vibrations has been gathered from both field measurements and theoretical analyses.

VTT has expertise in the development of various non-destructive measuring methods for scanning beneath the ground and their application in identifying earth structures and their characteristics. We develop structural solutions and production methods for rock construction and performance-based quality and environmental impact management. The hydraulic isolation and coating structures for rock tunnels and facilities, as well as design methods for thermal and frost insulation are some of our central research topics.

VTT has more than 20 years experience in frost research and we have developed design methods and codes of practice currently in use in Finland. We also carry out frost investigations and site-specific designs. We conduct research on freezing and frost heaving of ground as well as thawing and its effects.

VTT has focused the research area of infra- and geostructures into three main themes:

  • Monitoring, modelling and simulation of infrastructures
  • Effects of climate change on infrastructures
  • Development and piloting of infrastructure systems

Challenges

Climate change, the pressure to save natural resources, materials price increase sand targets in public sector productivity improvement will require operating in a controlled way, using predictable products and structures and competitiveness ensuring the lowest possible infrastructure investment. This goal is promoted by function and life cycle thinking, as well as taking into account the environmental impacts combined with research into infrastructures. An internationally networked approach provides an opportunity to respond to challenges, always using the best possible expertise and utilising cross-border technologies domestically, as well as assisting customers’ possibilities to succeed in international markets.

Solutions

  • Intensified ground-construction automation
  • Creating prerequisites for function based schemes
  • Management of deterioration of materials and structures in different load conditions
  • Risk management in anticipating effects
  • Creating tools for evaluating the functionality of structures
  • Material research and development (ground stabilisation, piles, asphalt, natural materials as gravel, moraine, bentonite)

Benefits

  • The quality, reliability and predictability of infra- and geostructures are improving
  • The use of scarce natural resources is decreasing
  • Ground-construction investments are enhanced
  • Adaptation to climate change is improved and risks are getting smaller
  • Global studies support export


Additional information

Jouko Törnqvist
Senior Research Scientist
+358 20 722 4860

Jouko Ritola
Senior Research Scientist
+358 20 722 6177