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The Ground Reaction Curve due to Tunnelling under Drainage Condition

The Ground Reaction Curve due to Tunnelling under Drainage Condition

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Published by Nguyễn Hòa
When a tunnel is excavated below the groundwater table, water flows
into the excavated wall of tunnel and seepage forces are acting on the tunnel wall.
Such seepage forces significantly affect the ground behavior. The ground response to
tunnelling is understood theoretically by the convergence-confinement method, which
consists of three elements: longitudinal deformation profile, ground reaction curve,
and support characteristic curve. The seepage forces are likely to have a strong
influence on the ground reaction curve which is defined as the relationship between
internal pressure and radial displacement of the tunnel wall. In this paper, seepage
forces arising from the ground water flow into a tunnel were estimated quantitatively.
Magnitude of seepage forces was determined based on hydraulic gradient distribution
around tunnel. To estimate seepage forces, different cover depths and groundwater
table levels were considered. Using these results, the theoretical solutions for the
ground reaction curve (GRC) with consideration of seepage forces under steady-state
flow were derived.
When a tunnel is excavated below the groundwater table, water flows
into the excavated wall of tunnel and seepage forces are acting on the tunnel wall.
Such seepage forces significantly affect the ground behavior. The ground response to
tunnelling is understood theoretically by the convergence-confinement method, which
consists of three elements: longitudinal deformation profile, ground reaction curve,
and support characteristic curve. The seepage forces are likely to have a strong
influence on the ground reaction curve which is defined as the relationship between
internal pressure and radial displacement of the tunnel wall. In this paper, seepage
forces arising from the ground water flow into a tunnel were estimated quantitatively.
Magnitude of seepage forces was determined based on hydraulic gradient distribution
around tunnel. To estimate seepage forces, different cover depths and groundwater
table levels were considered. Using these results, the theoretical solutions for the
ground reaction curve (GRC) with consideration of seepage forces under steady-state
flow were derived.

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The Ground Reaction Curve due to Tunnelling under Drainage Condition

Young-jin Shin
1
, Byoung-min Kim
2
, Shin-in Han
3
, In-mo Lee
4
, and Daehyeon Kim
5
1
School of Civil Engineering, Purdue University, West Lafayette: iamyjshin@gmail.com
2
Underground Space Construction Technology Centre, Seoul, Korea
3
Department of Civil Engineering, Korea University, Seoul, Korea
4
Department of Civil Engineering, Korea University, Seoul, Korea: inmolee@korea.ac.kr
5
Indiana Department of Transportation, West Lafayette
ABSTRACT: When a tunnel is excavated below the groundwater table, water flows
into the excavated wall of tunnel and seepage forces are acting on the tunnel wall.
Such seepage forces significantly affect the ground behavior. The ground response to
tunnelling is understood theoretically by the convergence-confinement method, which
consists of three elements: longitudinal deformation profile, ground reaction curve,
and support characteristic curve. The seepage forces are likely to have a strong
influence on the ground reaction curve which is defined as the relationship between
internal pressure and radial displacement of the tunnel wall. In this paper, seepage
forces arising from the ground water flow into a tunnel were estimated quantitatively.
Magnitude of seepage forces was determined based on hydraulic gradient distribution
around tunnel. To estimate seepage forces, different cover depths and groundwater
table levels were considered. Using these results, the theoretical solutions for the
ground reaction curve (GRC) with consideration of seepage forces under steady-state
flow were derived.
INTRODUCTION
When a tunnel is excavated below the groundwater table, groundwater may flow
into the tunnel and, consequently, seepage forces may develop in the ground seriously
affecting the behavior of the tunnel. Ground response to tunnelling can be understood
theoretically by the convergence-confinement method. This method is based on the
principle for which a tunnel is stabilized by controlling its displacements after
installation of a support near the tunnel face. The convergence-confinement method is
based on three elements: the longitudinal deformation profile, the ground reaction
curve, and the support characteristic curve. The longitudinal deformation profile
assuming no support shows the radial displacement of the tunnel cross-section in the
longitudinal direction from the tunnel face. The support characteristic curve describes
394
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the increasing pressure that acts on the supports as the radial displacement of the
tunnel increases. Lastly, the ground reaction curve shows the increasing trends of
radial displacement as the internal pressure of the tunnel decreases. Tunnelling below
the ground water table induces additional seepage stresses (Shin et al., 2007), and the
seepage forces are likely to have a strong influence on the ground reaction curve.
Previous studies on the ground reaction curve by Stille (1989), Wang (1994),
Carranza-Torres( 2002), Sharan (2003), and Oreste (2003) did not consider seepage
forces. The effects of seepage forces on the tunnel face or the support system were
studied by Muir Wood (1975), Curtis (1976), Atkinson (1983), Schweiger (1991),
Fernandez and Alveradez (1994), Fernandez (1994), Lee and Nam (2001), Bobet
(2003), Shin et al. (2005). A simplified analytical solution of the ground reaction
curve was suggested by Lee et al. (2007); however, mathematical solutions of ground
reaction curves influenced by seepage forces have not been suggested.
In this study, based on these previous studies, the theoretical solutions of the
ground reaction curve considering seepage forces due to groundwater flow under
steady-state flow were derived.
THEORETICAL SOLUTION OF GROUND REACTION CURVE WITH
CONSIDERATION OF SEEPAGE FORCES
Theoretical solution for stress
It is assumed that a soil-mass behaves as an isotropic, homogeneous and
permeable medium. Also, an elasto-plastic model based on a linear Mohr-Coulomb
yield criterion is adopted in this study, as indicated in Figure 1.
1 3
( 1) k k a o o ' ' = + ÷
(1)
Here
1
o'
indicates the major principal stress,
3
o '
is the minor principal stress,
2
tan (45 )
2
k
|
= +
,
tan
c
a
|
=
, where
k
and
a
are the Mohr-Coulomb constants, c is
the cohesion, and | is the friction angle.
|
|'
c
c'
a'
a
o
t
1
c
t
'
0
o
i
p
o
r
e
r
'
0
o
'
0
o
'
0
o
FIG. 1. Elasto-plastic model based on
Mohr-Coulomb yield criterion
FIG. 2. Circular opening in an infinite
medium
Figure 2 shows a circular opening of radius
0
r with
0
1 k = in an infinite soil-mass
GEOCONGRESS 2008: GEOSUSTAINABILITY AND GEOHAZARD MITIGATION 395
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subject to a hydrostatic in situ stress,
0
o ' . The opening inner surface is subject to the
outward radial pressure to the tunnel surface,
i
p (
0
k means the ratio of effective
vertical stress and horizontal stress).
Considering all the stresses on an infinitesimal element abcd of unit thickness
during excavation of a circular tunnel in Figure 3, when u c is small, the equilibrium
of radial forces with respect to r and u can be expressed as follows:
1
0
r r r
r
F
r r r
u u
o o o o
u
' ' ' c ÷ c
+ + + =
c c
(2)
2 1
0
r r
F
r r r
u u u
u
o o o
u
' ' ' c c
+ + + =
c c
(3)
If the tunnel is excavated under the groundwater table, then it acts as a drain. The
body force is the seepage stress, as illustrated in Figure 3.
r r w
F i ¸ =
(4)
w
F i
u u
¸ =
(5)
In this state,
r
i and i
u
are the hydraulic gradients in the r and u directions,
respectively, and
w
¸ is the unit weight of the groundwater.
Therefore, (2) and (3) can be rewritten as follows:
1
0
r r r
r w
i
r r r
u u
o o o o
¸
u
' ' ' ' c ÷ c
+ + + =
c c
(6)
2 1
0
r r
w
i
r r r
u u u
u
o o o
¸
u
' ' ' c c
+ + + =
c c
(7)
If the stress distribution is symmetrical with respect to the axis O in Figure 3, then
the stress components do not vary with angular orientation, u , and therefore, they are
functions of the radial distance r only. Accordingly, (6) reduces to the single
equation of equilibrium as follows:
0
r r
r w
d
i
dr r
u
o o o
¸
' ' ' ÷
+ + =
(8)
r
F
F
u
u c
r
o
ru
o
r
r
r
r
o
o
c
+ c
c
r
r
r
r
u
u
o
o
c
+ c
c
ru
o
u
o
r
r
u
u
o
o u
u
c
+ c
c
u
u
o
o u
u
c
+ c
c
r
u
c
r c
FIG. 3. Body forces under the groundwater table
GEOCONGRESS 2008: GEOSUSTAINABILITY AND GEOHAZARD MITIGATION 396
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For the plastic region, (1) can be modified as follows:
( 1)
r r r r
k k a
u
o o ' ' = + ÷
(9)
where
2
tan (45 )
2
r
r
k
|
= +
,
tan
r
r
r
c
a
|
=
,
r
k and
r
a are the Mohr-Coulomb constants,
r
c is the cohesion, and
r
| is the friction angle in the plastic region.
Substituting (9) into (8) and solving it with the boundary conditions
r i
p o' = at
0
r r = . Then, the radial and circumferential effective stresses in the plastic region are
as follows (Shin et al., 2007):
( ) ( ) ( )
0
0 0
1
1 1 0
1
[ ]
r
r r
r
k
r r
k k w
rp i r r r r
k
R R
r
p a a i d i d
r r
¸
o ç ç ç ç ç ç
÷
÷ ÷
÷
| |
' = + ÷ ÷ ÷
|
\ .
} }
(10)
( ) ( ) ( )
0
0 0
1
1 1 0
1
[ ]
r
r r
r
k
r r
k k w
p r i r r r r r
k
R R
r
k p a a k i d i d
r r
u
¸
o ç ç ç ç ç ç
÷
÷ ÷
÷
| |
' = + ÷ ÷ ÷
|
\ .
} }
(11)
where,
0
R
is the distance from ground to the center of tunnel.
In this equation,
i
p is all the support pressure developed by in situ stress and
seepage. Subscripts rp and p u are the radial and tangential effective stresses in the
plastic region, respectively.
In order to estimate the effective stress in the elastic region, the superposition
concept is used. As shown in Figure 4, the effective stress considering the seepage
force can be assumed as a combination of the solution of the equilibrium equation for
the dry condition and the effective stress only considering seepage.
FIG. 4. Concept of superposition in elastic region.
The Kirsch solutions are applied to solve the effective stresses in the elastic region
under dry condition (Timoshenko and Goodier, 1969).
For the seepage condition, Stern (1969) suggests effective stresses in the elastic
region with consideration of the seepage force as follows:
( )
( )
( )
( )
( )
2
1 2 1
2log 1
4 2 2 1 2 1
rei
C A B v
r I r J r
r v v
o
÷
' ( = ÷ ÷ ÷ ÷ ÷ ÷
¸ ¸
÷ ÷
(12)
( )
( )
( )
( )
( )
2
1 2 1
2log 1
4 2 2 1 2 1
ei
C A B v
r I r J r
r v v
u
o
÷
' ( = ÷ + ÷ ÷ +
¸ ¸
÷ ÷
(13)
GEOCONGRESS 2008: GEOSUSTAINABILITY AND GEOHAZARD MITIGATION 397
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where
( ) ( )
0
r
w r
R
I r i d ¸ ç ç =
}
,
( ) ( )
0
2
2
r
w
r
R
J r i d
r
¸
ç ç ç =
}
, C, A and B are constants
defined by the boundary conditions.
(12) and (13) can be solved by using the boundary conditions 0
rei
o' = at
0
r r = ,
0
rei
o' = at
0
r R =
, and
0
ei u
o' =
at
0
r R =
.
Here, subscript i represents the term related to seepage.
Consequently, the radial and tangential effective stresses with consideration of the
seepage forces in the elastic region can be obtained by the superposition of both of
solutions as follows:
( )
( )
( )
( )
( ) ( )
2 2
0 0 0 0
0
2 2 2 2
0 0 0 0
2
0 0
0 0 2
0 0
0
2 2
0 0
1 1
2log 1
1 2log 2log 1 1 2log 2log 1
2log 1 2 1
1 2log 2log 1
2 1 2 1
re
i
Z Z
r
R r R r
r R
r R r R
Z R v r
I r J r p
R r
R v v r
r R
o
o o
÷
' = ÷ ÷ (
¸ ¸
÷ ÷ + ÷ ÷ +
+ +
÷
| |
' ' + ÷ ÷ + ÷ ÷
|
÷ ÷ +
÷ ÷
\ .
+
(14)

( )
( )
( )
( )
( ) ( )
2 2
0 0 0 0
0
2 2 2 2
0 0 0 0
2
0 0
0 0 2
0 0
0
2 2
0 0
1 1
2log 1
1 2log 2log 1 1 2log 2log 1
2log 1 2 1
1 2log 2log 1
2 1 2 1
e
i
Z Z
r
R r R r
r R
r R r R
Z R v r
I r J r p
R r
R v v r
r R
u
o
o o
' = ÷ + (
¸ ¸
÷ ÷ + ÷ ÷ +
+ +
÷
| |
' ' + ÷ + + + ÷
|
÷ ÷ +
÷ ÷
\ .
+
(15)
Here,
( )
( )
( )
( )
0 0
0 0
2
2
0
1 2 1
2 1 2 1
r r
w
w r r
R R
v
Z i d i d
v v r
¸
¸ ç ç ç ç ç
÷
= +
÷ ÷
} }

(16) is derived from (14) and (15) and the Mohr-Coulomb yield criterion at the
stress state in the elastic region.
( ) ( )
( )
( )
0
1 1 1 1
2 ( log )
1 1 1 1
e
r e e
k
a A r B I r
k k k v
o o
÷
' ' ( = + + ÷ ÷ ÷
¸ ¸
+ + + ÷
(16)
Where,
2
0 0
0
2 2
0 0
4
2log 2log 1 1
Z
A
R r
R
r R
=
÷ + ÷
+
0
2
0 0
0
2 2
0 0
4log
2log 2log 1 1
R Z
B
R r
R
r R
÷
=
÷ + ÷
+
Finally, at the interface between the plastic and elastic regions,
e
r r = , the radial
stress calculated in the plastic region must be identical to that in the elastic region.
Consequently, (10) should be equal to (16) since the radial stress should be continuous
over the boundary. The radius of the plastic zone,
e
r , can be derived as follows:
( )
( )
( )
( )
( ) ( )
0
0
0 0
1
1
0
0
1 1
1
1 1 1 1
2 (
1 1 1 1
1
log )
[ ]
e r
e
r r
r
r k
r w r
R
e ec
i r
r r
k k w
r r k
R R
e
k
a a i d
k k k v
r r A r B
p a
i d i d
r
o ¸ ç ç
¸
ç ç ç ç ç ç
÷
÷ ÷
÷
( ÷ ÷ ¦ ¹
' + + +
( ¦ ¦
+ + + ÷
( ¦ ¦
¦ ¦
(
( = ÷ ÷
´ `
¸ ¸
(
+
¦ ¦
(
¦ ¦
+ ÷
(
¦ ¦
( ¹ ) ¸ ¸
}
} }
(17)

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Theoretical solution for displacement
The radial displacement for a circular tunnel can be worked out based on the elasto-
plastic theory. The strains in the plastic region are composed of elastic and plastic
strains, and are expressed as Eqn. (18) and (19), respectively. The superscripts e and
p represent the elastic and plastic parts, respectively. By considering compressive
strains and radially inward displacements to be positive, the relationship between
strain and displacement at any point in a soil-mass can be written as follows:
e p
r r r
c c c = +
(18)
e p
u u u
c c c = +
(19)
r
r
du
dr
c
÷
=
(20)
r
u
r
u
c
÷
=
(21)
The plastic strain can be represented by using the plastic flow rule. When the
volume expansion effect is important in plastic strain, generally the non-associated
flow rule is valid; otherwise, the associated flow rule is valid. The plastic potential
function, Q, when using non-associated flow rule, is as follows:
( , ) 2 0
r r
Q f k c k
u u ¢ ¢
o o o o = = ÷ ÷ =
(22)
where
1 sin
1 sin
k
¢
¢
¢
+
=
÷
, the parameter ¢ is the dilation angle.
The plastic parts of radial and circumferential strains can be related as follows:
r
p p
k
u
¢
c c = ÷
(23)
Eqn. (20) ~ (23) lead to the following differential equation.
( )
r r
du u
k f r
dr r
¢
+ =
(24)
where ( )
e
r
k f r
u
¢
c c + =
e
(25)
Eqn. (24) can be solved by using the following boundary condition for the radial
displacement,
( )
e
r r r
u
=
, at the elasto-plastic interface (Brady and Brown, 1993).
( ) ( )
( )
2
e e
r r r vo r r r
b
u
G
o o
= =
÷
= ÷
(26)
where G is the shear modulus of the soil-mass.
Eqn. (24) - (26) lead to the following expressions for the radial displacement:
( )
( )
e
e
k
r
k k
e
r r r r
r
r
u r r f r dr u
r
¢
¢ ¢
÷
=
| |
= +
|
\ .
}
(27)
In order to evaluate the integral in the above equation, expressions for
e
r
c and
e
u
c
can be obtained by the following equation (Brady and Brown, 1993):
2
1
[(1 2 ) ]
2
e
r
D
C
G r
c u = ÷ +
(28)
GEOCONGRESS 2008: GEOSUSTAINABILITY AND GEOHAZARD MITIGATION 399
Copyright ASCE 2008 GeoCongress 2008
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2
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[(1 2 ) ]
2
e
D
C
G r
u
c u = ÷ ÷
(29)
Here
2 2
( ) 0 0 0
2 2
0
( ) ( )
e
r r r e i
e
r p r
C
r r
o o o
=
' ' ' ÷ ÷ ÷
=
÷
,
2 2
( ) 0
2 2
0
( )
e
i r r r e
e
p r r
D
r r
o
=
' ÷
=
÷
, and
u
is the
Poisson`s ratio of the soil-mass.
Eqn. (26) can be solved by using Eqn. (28) and (29). The expression for the radial
displacement in the plastic region at the opening surface
0
r r = is given by Eqn. (30).
0
1 1 1 1
( ) 0 0 0 ( )
0
1
[ (1 2 )( ) ( )] ( )
2
e
k k k k k k
e
r r r e e r r r
r
u r C r r D r r u
G r
¢ ¢ ¢ ¢ ¢ ¢
u
÷ + + ÷ ÷
= =
= ÷ ÷ ÷ ÷ +
(30)
The ground reaction curve is estimated by using the theoretical solutions for the
cases in which the cover depth of the tunnel, C, and water height, H , are 10 times
the diameter of tunnel, D. As shown in Figure 5, the ground reaction curve with
consideration of seepage force shows larger radial displacement than the ground
reaction curve for the dry condition; this result means that there is no ground water
when the cover depth of the tunnel, C, is 10 times the diameter of the tunnel, D.
This is due to the fact that even if the effective overburden pressure can be decreased
by the arching effect during tunnel excavation, seepage forces still remain.
FIG. 5. The ground reaction curve ( / 10 C D = , / 10 H D = )
CONCLUSIONS
The flow of groundwater has a significant effect on the radial displacement of a tunnel
wall. While the effective overburden pressure is reduced slightly by the arching effect
during tunnel excavation, seepage forces still remain. Therefore, the presence of
groundwater induces larger radial displacements of the tunnel wall than those in the
case of dry condition.
GEOCONGRESS 2008: GEOSUSTAINABILITY AND GEOHAZARD MITIGATION 400
Copyright ASCE 2008 GeoCongress 2008
GeoCongress 2008
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ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
This paper was supported by the Underground Space Construction Technology Center
under the Ministry of Construction and Transportation in Korea (Grant C04-01).
REFERENCES
Atkinson, J.H. and Mair, R.J. (1983). "Loads on leaking and watertight tunnel lining,
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Brady, B.H.G. and Brown, E.T. (1993). “Rock mechanics for underground mining.”
London; Chapman and Hall.
Carranza-Torres, C. (2002). "Dimensionless Graphical Representation of the Exact
Elasto-plastic Solution of a Circular Tunnel in a Mohr-Coulomb Material Subject
to Uniform Far-field Stresses." Rock Mechanics and Rock Engineering, Vol. 36(3):
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Fernandez, G. and Alvarez, T.A. (1994). "Seepage-induced effective stresses and
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Lee, S.W., Jung, J.W., Nam, S.W. and Lee, I.M. (2007). "The influence of seepage
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Schweiger, H.F., Pottler, R.K. and Steiner H. (1991). "Effect of seepage forces on the
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Sharan, S.K. (2003). "Elastic-brittle-plastic analysis of circular openings in Hoek-
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Shin, J.H., Potts, D.M. and Zdravkovic, L. (2005). "The effect of pore-water pressure
on NATM tunnel lingings in decomposed granite soil." Canadian Geotechnical J.,
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Shin, J.H., Lee, I.M. and Shin, Y.J. (2007). "Seepae-induced Stress due to Tunnelling
under Drainage Condition.", Canadian Geotechnical J., (Submitted).
Stille, H., Holmberg, M. and Nord, G. (1989), "Support of Weak Rock with Grouted
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Geomechanics Abstracts, Vol. 26, No. 1, pp. 99-113.
GEOCONGRESS 2008: GEOSUSTAINABILITY AND GEOHAZARD MITIGATION 401
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