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Chapter 8

Reinforcement Mechanism of Rock Bolts

Rock bolts have been used in rock engineering from end of the 19th century [445].
In 1890, reinforced steel was used in reinforcing the rock mass in mines in north
Wales. After the 1940s, this support technique was adopted worldwide. The use of
shotcrete together with rock bolts further promotes the application of bolt as a main
supporting method. Based on the rock bolt technique, a new construction method
combining the use of rock bolts and shotcrete gradually formed in Europe in the
1950s and 1960s. This method sets a milestone in the underground construction
technology. In recent years, many researchers and engineers have studied the effects
of bolts in rock reinforcement. This chapter summarises some of the research


8.1.1 Effects of rock bolts
Two main types of rock bolts are widely employed in the underground excavation
in rocks. One is the end-anchored bolts varying from wedge to resin anchoring. The
other one is the full-length anchored type varying from fully grouted to split-set
The effects of rock bolts on the surrounding rock are mainly two-fold: providing
the reaction force and the reinforcement to the surrounding rock mass. The former
prevents deformation occurring in the surrounding rock mass and provides the
tensile force to resist the movement of rock blocks. The latter reinforces the rock
mass to be an integrated medium and to easily form arches around the excavation
[446-477]. Reinforcement. The efforts of other support methods such as timber frame,
segment lining, and cast concrete lining are mainly external supports. As the rock
bolts are inserted into the rock masses, the effects of rock bolts on the rock mass are
similar to that of steel bars in reinforced concrete. They increase the integrity and
overall strength of the rock masses. The bolts prevent the rock masses from sliding
and failing and increase the load-bearing capacity effectively. The rock mass is
reinforced by the bolts and becomes an effective self-support medium [446-473].


248 Chapter 8 Post effect of pre-stressing. This restriction is mobilised once deformation starts to occur and it can be regarded as a complementary pre-stress on the excavation surface after the excavation. Rock bolts significantly increase the integrity of the rock mass due to this pre-stressing effect [446-448. The application of bolts has flexibility during the construction.3 Prompt prevention.1. the shear strength of the surrounding rock mass can be expressed by the Mohr-Coulomb strength condition. 8.1. The early application of rock bolts provides prompt prevention of failure. 8. as shown in Figure 8. 8. they are discussed by examining the shear strength and other properties of the bolted rock masses. A series of studies on the reinforcement mechanism of rock bolts have been carried out. The restriction occurs at the ends of anchored rock bolts and along the full length of grouted rock bolts. Rock bolts possess better match ability to the deformation of rock mass than other support methods. Bolting and shotcreting can be completed in several steps [475.474]. The size and distribution of rock bolts can be adjusted according to the geological conditions of the surrounding rock.1.476].5 Flexibility in construction. 8. Rock bolts and shotcrete are often applied immediately after excavation.1. The difference between the moduli restricts the surrounding rock mass to deform (usually tensile deformation towards the centre of the opening) after excavation. compared with that of the rock mass without bolts. Additional bolts can be installed at a later stage.1.1. Test results indicated that application of rock bolts increases the peak compressive strength of the rock mass by 50~100%.1.2 Reinforcement mechanism of rock bolts The reinforcement mechanisms of rock bolts are very complex.4 Good match to deformation. In some cases. It is often referred as 'flexible support'. For a single opening. . This support method is also very suitable for tunnels in soft rock. The deformation modulus of the rock bolt (usually steel) is generally greater than that of the surrounding rock masses. to restrain the relaxation of the surrounding rock and to improve the rock mass strength early.1. In this section. rock bolts can also be implemented prior to the excavation.

the uniaxial compressive strength of the rock mass strength (CYmass) is assumed as 5. Reinforcement Mechanism of Rock Bolts 249 The reaction force contributed by rock bolts to the surrounding rock m a s s (Ao-2) can be estimated from the allowable tensile stresses in the rock bolts. Assuming that the length of bolt is 60cm and the allowed tensile load is 100 kN.5cmass=l. The increased cohesion equals to c " . For full-length grouted or frictional bolts. then C'mass=l. the shear strength of surrounding rock is enhanced by the bolts.1.31 Mpa (8. For example.(C~nass .1) The uniaxial compressive strength of the rock material (cyc) is assumed as 15. As shown in Figure 8.97MPa. this circle is tangential to the strength envelope BCA at A. F r o m Figure 8.1. Assuming that the stresses (3"1 and cy2 on the opening wall reach the rock mass shear strength. The new minor principal stress is cy2'= G2 + A O'2.c ' .0 MPa (1/3cyc) and the internal friction angle (qbmass) is 35 ~ The cohesion of rock mass can be derived as: Cmass = ~mass(1 . In this case the stress circle change to the small Mohr circle cY'2A'cyl with centre O'. The reinforcement effect of a bolt is therefore on the rock wall and the bolt anchor while the other parts of the bolt are not in contact with the rock mass.28 MPa.3) For the full-length grouted bolts. the reaction stress on the rock surface provided by the bolt can be calculated as A cy2 = 0.2) If the compressive strength of the properly bolted rock m a s s (Ctmass) is 50% greater than that of unbolted rock mass. and the strength envelope is B'C'A'. and assuming the density of rock mass of 2500 kg/m 3.Cmass)COS ~ (8. and the shear envelope shifts up to the position of B"C"A" (assuming no change in friction angle). for a tunnel at depth of 500m with hydro-static in situ stress condition. in addition to the reaction force at the rock wall generated by the bolts. the reinforcement bolts increase the shear-bearing capacity of the rock masses. AOA . the shift of the strength envelope. the in situ stress field can be obtained as: ~ix = cyiy = cyiz = 12. The reaction force of rock bolts to the rock wall can be defined as A cY2 for the end-anchored bolt. the reinforcement is applied through a reaction force at the rock wall. the stress condition of the rock wall can be expressed by the Mohr circle cy2ACyl with centre O. For the end-anchored bolts.sin ~ m a s s ) / 2 COS ~mass = 1.5 MPa (8.0 MPa. The strength .

It is of great interest to have a scientific approach in selecting the rock bolt to overcome such large deformation problems. When the surrounding rock mass is soft and/or subjected to high in situ stresses. Strengthanalysis of rock bolt effects. the selected model material (made of sand and white glue) has elastic modulus of 230 MPa. properties of dilation and softening. After testing different model materials. and results are of interest to engineers. The bolt is modelled by the bamboo material with . The analysis clearly shows that the full-length grouted bolts achieve high strength storage than the end-anchored bolts.1.2. At present. The systematic studies are conducted on the installation angle. However. PHYSICAL MODELLING OF ROCK BOLTS Rock bolts enhance and reinforce the rock masses. such as stress-strain relation. the common way of applying bolts is to install bolts perpendicular to the rock surface. density and other parameters.1 Similarity of model materials Rock masses close to the surface are treated as separable blocky materials. envelope of full-length grouted bolt is increased by an offset AO'A' = (c"-c')cos~ from the end-anchored bolt.2. the mechanisms of reinforcement. displacement of the tunnel wall can often be as high as 50-100cm. 8. This section presents studies on the rock bolt mechanism using physical modelling. The model materials should have similar characteristics as the real rock masses.477]. and the deformation and damage of bolts in the surrounding rock mass subjected to change of stress field have not been fully understood [449. due to the effects of grouting.463. The difference of the effects of two types of rock bolts can be significant.467. The analysis above is under the assumption that the strength offset is based on the shortest relative distance from centre of the Mohr circle to the envelope. 8.250 Chapter 8 it B" B B' 0 2 0 2 ' 0 o' 01 on Figure 8.

0 3. F r o m the results. bolt densities and installation angles are systematically compared in the tests.3.ts 0 1. tensile test. F r o m the bulk deformation curves. Results of tensile tests.2-8. o15~ . and cyclic loading test for the model specimens with and without bolts. biaxial and triaxial compression.2.. A series of tests are conducted including uniaxial. No bolts § 2 / 0 . as shown in Figures 8.0 2. elastic modulus of 100-170 MPa. bolting methods.4. it also can be seen that the modelling material has the similar dilation property as the modelled rock mass..t. The strength of the material .. Reinforcement Mechanism of Rock Bolts 251 Axial stress (MPa) With bolts I . o. 15 10 5 0 5 10 15 Strain ( 10-3) Figure 8. 8. 1.0 Strain (10 -3) Figure 8. Results of compression tests.atera g.2 Comparison of different bolting methods The effects of different bolt materials.2. . it can be seen that the ratio of modulus to strength of the model material is 178 and that of the rock mass is 200. The ratio of modelling material compressive strengths to rock mass strength is 1/15.

Different densities are used at 8.8 indicate the various load-deformation curves. the rock mass can have the highest . equivalent to the actual bolt spacing of 1. and 36 bolts per 200cm 2. vertically and horizontally intersected bolts. 12. Bamboo ( E = 10 x 103MPa) and plexiglass ( E = 3 x 103 MPa) are used as modelling materials of the bolts.0MPa.252 Chapter 8 1. The details of various arrangements are summarised in Figure 8. 9 O0 0 O0 9 O0 O0 9 O0 0 0 0 O0 0 0 0 0 0 0 O0 0 0 0 0 0 0 O0 0 0 0 0 0 0 O0 0 0 0 Normal parallel (NP) Vertically oblique Horizontally oblique intersected (VO) intersected (HO) Figure 8. The bolting methods in the tests include end-anchored and fully grouted parallel bolts perpendicular to the rock wall. Results of cyclic compression tests. Different bolt arrangement used in the tests.5 and Table 8.5 n v (o 1.1. Both full-length grouting and end-anchored bolts are modelled. modelling the rock mass is 1.5. it can be seen that high density of bolts can improve the strength of surrounding rock mass. Figure 8. n 0 5 10 15 20 Axial strain (10 -3) Figure 8. 10.2 to 0. From the figures.0 (/) -~ 0.4 m.5 .4.8a illustrates that for the same bolt spacing and length. fully grouted perpendicular. Figures 8.6-8. The horizontally obliquely intersected full-length grouted bolts give high strength of the rock mass and small number of bolts.

VO-F8 i . NP-F10 ~ ~ .. ...0 1. . 20 / ~'~ ./.. .. . ~. .axial deformation of different bolt arrangement. ... to the rock wall surface.6. ... Bamboo Bamboo Bamboo Bamboo Bamboo Bamboo Peak strength (MPa) 1.1.. Two ends Full-length Full-length Full-length Full-length Full-length Bolt material .. Axial load ... strength and the lowest dilation when the bolts are installed at 22... . the test results shown in Figure 8..5 ~ and 67./ . Type No Normal Normal Normal Vertically Vertically Horizontally bolt parallel parallel parallel oblique oblique oblique Symbols NB NP-E10 NP-F10 NP-F36 VO-F8 VO-F12 HO-F12 Bolt density . 10 l0 36 8 12 12 (per 200 cm 2) Inclination to wall . . .5 1.8 suggest that mixed length bolts (total 9 bolts of 5.. .:.. .82 cm long and evenly spaced) provide the best reinforcement results. . .06 Softening behaviour Yes Yes No No Yes No No /'/ NP-F36 /-..41 and 10. .5 ~. 90 ~ 90 ~ 90 ~ 73 ~ 68 ~ 75~ Anchor and grouting ."" "'. while short bolts with high density (total 12 bolts of 5. \m_~ lOF .6 Axialdeformation(mm) Figure 8. HO-F12 l/ //i-' / .0 1. .../-" 0 0..41 cm long and evenly spaced) give the ..54 2..i .2 0.... Reinforcement Mechanism of Rock Bolts 253 Table 8.. ......2 2.4 0. .5 3. Various types of bolts and their parameters.. vo-F 2 ~-.. For the same bolting angle and the same total lengths of bolts.

.. .o....volumetric strain for different bolt arrangement... " \// "~r / "~I" - NP.. .. / v HO-F12 ...... Axial l o a d ... .5 ~ (b) 9%..~ ~-~: Length 6 cm Intensive 1 short bolts ..... o'} / / / t- .10 Volumetric s t r a i n Ev Figure 8. ....' ..05 -0..7.. ....... .EIO//"~.... ~ 22... ... . ..... I I 0....5 1 C v (%) -1 0 1 2 ~v (%) Figure 8.." 2. / " "o 9 ...8.... .. i9 o i O / z 20 i .. ~ long 34 ~ ~ ---------___ ~ bolts 3..../ . . q I I I .i NP-F10 " ... I NP-F36 L........"" .. 3- 1 1 ~ ...volumetric deformation for different (a) bolting angle......./" ...254 Chapter 8 i i i. and (b) bolt length. . ..' ..' ..: . /_ / io VO-F8 ":. ..05 0 -0.. I I I . .. Axial load....- -0.......... ..o'.5 0 0... 1 / VO-F12 ..0~ ~ ~ Mixed long 2 2 and VO bolts short bolts Space 6 cm . ...." l ~' i Uniform 45~ ~ "---'--''-'--.. ot = 67.5 ~ ~ 56~ " . t .

Therefore. 8. following observations are obtained: (a) The peak uniaxial compressive strength of the rock mass with bolts increases significantly (up to 20% from the model tests) compared with that without bolts while the residual strength and the tensile strength increase up to 100%. Two in situ stress conditions are modelled: (a) far field stresses O" 1 . Reinforcement Mechanism of Rock Bolts 255 worst reinforcement results. types. However. as compared with uniformly long bolts (total 6 bolts of 10. rock mass strength can increase by 3 times with little volumetric dilation. 8. The post-peak softening phenomenon is not obvious for the fully grouted bolts while it is significant for the end-anchored bolts.3 Analysis of test results From the test results shown in Figures 8. (d) Compared to the end-anchored bolts. the strength of the models is affected not only by the bolt densities but also by bolt installation angles.8 and Table 8. 8.1. and shear strength and lateral stiffness of bolt. and (b) far field . But the bolts are required to possess a high lateral stiffness in this case.1 Basicparameters of the numerical model A simple circular opening model is used in the parametric study.3.2. non-linear finite element numerical modelling is applied to study effects of rock bolts on the stability of tunnels in soft rocks.6) when the density of bolts is high.82 cm long and evenly spaced).. In biaxial case.7 and 8. (b) Under the plane strain condition. end-anchored bolts have low post-peak strength. the bulk displacement curves are different for the two different bolt types. the peak compressive strength can increase by 50-100% (Figure 8. The best arrangement appears to the bolts at 65 ~ angle to the wall.6.3. The dilation of the fully grouted bolts starts at a later stage. (c) The obliquely intersected bolt distribution enhances the rock mass strength and limits the dilation significantly. NUMERICAL MODELLING OF BOLT In this section. the improvement of full-length grouted bolts on the peak strength of the surrounding rock mass is not obvious. 8. Parameters obtained from physical modelling are used as input to the numerical modelling.0 " 2 = 20 MPa.

The mechanical parameters of surrounding rock mass are adopted from the physical model tests described in the previous section. one quarter of problem is analysed by a finite element program. A total of 136 elements and 162 nodes are used in the model.2 Models with far field stresses cyl~ = cy2~ 20 MPa Stress distributions of models I. as shown in Figure 8. and the largest displacements of the wall are summarised in Table 8. II and III when (3"1~ ~ a r e presented in Figure 8.10. opening with bolts that are normal to the wall surface.3 illustrate the range of damage zones in the surrounding rock mass occurring near the wall. and it is less than half of that of the opening without bolts. Based on the symmetry.2. The obliquely intersected bolting gives the smallest displacement. 8. The surrounding rock mass is regarded as an elasto- plastic material. and opening with obliquely intersected bolts.9.3. O2 O1 r Figure 8.256 Chapter 8 .11 and Table 8. Figure 8. The results show that the surrounding rock mass with bolts is generally less damaged than that without bolts.3.9. Element division near the opening. and is summarised in Table 8. Three different cases are studied: opening without bolts. .0. The problem is treated as a plain stress one. stresses C~l = 2cy2 =-20 MPa. The surrounding rock mass with obliquely intersected bolt system is the least damaged. The radius of the opening is 2 m and the thickness of bolted region equals to the opening radius.

./ 1o i.~:~.. (MPa) 2..r..15 c...80 1..~.10.77 E (MPa) 0..~ .84 Number of damage elements 24 16 8 ..11 0.86 5. roof . / os~-'~" Cyr ..'.4 x 10 4 1..36 7. Reinforcement Mechanism of Rock Bolts 257 Table 8.8 39 52 c (MPa) 3.03 1.--.'-'/ 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 r(m) Figure 8.58x104 1. II and III when far field cy~ = cr2. No bolting .58 5.0cr. Mechanical parameters of rock mass..2..25 0. Largest displacement and damage of models I.. = 52 crt (MPa) 1/15cyc = 1.5E=0. Normal bolting 30 ~. at roof.36 7.. Intersected bolting ~" ~I I '~-.'. II and III..25 0..2crt = 2. when ~ ~ = cy2~ Table 8.15 t 01--0"2. " ""~'"% "~" n ~. Model No bolts Normal bolts Oblique intersection bolts Maximum displacement (cm) 1.73 1.75 x l 0 4 v (MPa) 0.. . Stress distribution of models I. Parameter Model I: Model II: Model III: No bolts Normal bolts Obliquely intersected bolts % (MPa) 26 1.6~t = 2.3.5cyc = 39 2...:.. ..15E=0.25 4) (MPa) 35 ~ 35 ~ 35 ~ qbr (MPa) 35 ~ 35 ~ 35 ~ cyr (MPa) 200.

14 shows the damaged zones near the wall surface for the three models. the effects of the obliquely intersected bolt system are expected to be more significant. The elastic modulus and Poisson's ratio are approximately 1.. II and III when cy~~ (Y2~ 8. Again. Figure 8. showing the stress distribution in the roof and sidewall respectively. The actual excavation is in a sedimentary rock.5 MPa and 12.13.3 Models with far field stresses ( Y l . The obliquely intersected bolted rock mass sustains less than one-third of the damaged area than that of the unbolted rock mass. The effects of various bolt parameters are compared. 8. The in situ horizontal stresses are 19. to match the stiffness ratio.3. Damage around the opening of models I.2CY2 : 2 0 MPa The modelling results for the models I. and the bolts are modelled by bamboo of 2 mm diameter and 40mm long.4. II and III are presented in Figures 8.11. However. Table 8. The surrounding rock mass is faulted and fractured.4 shows the maximum displacement on the wall surfaces and the numbers of dam- aged elements of the three different models. The modelling materials and mechanical parameters are selected according to modelling scale to model an excavation in a rock mass. it can be concluded that obliquely intersected bolt system gives the best results.12 and 8.0 x 104 MPa and 0.25 respectively.8 MPa. By considering the post-failure dilation. The finite element modelling uses elasto- plastic approach. respectively. the effects of the obliquely intersected bolts on reducing the damaged zones and the displacements of the surrounding rock are significant compared with that of normal bolt system. The opening shape is an arched roof with . SCALED ENGINEERING MODEL TEST In order to study the reinforcement effects of rock bolts on the surrounding rock mass in an underground excavation. The bolt quantity of the obliquely intersected is 20% more than that of normal bolt system. Both stress and geometry scale ratios are 40. and post-failure dilation of the rock mass is not considered.258 Chapter 8 Figure 8. a series of biaxial compression tests on engineering physical model were conducted. The estimated uniaxial compression strength of the rock mass is about 30 MPa. The model is 50 x 50cm.

~ _ . 0"1=20"2.. as s h o w n in Figure 8.. (b) bolts p e r p e n d i c u l a r to the opening surface.15.F ~ t i i z z I i 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 r (m)' Figure 8.. ~ ..9 Intersected bolting ~'20 . ~.. ~ r '~ ~ m ~ ' .oO~ I I I I I I I ...'~'~'-.12.. 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 r(m) Figure 8.. No bolting 30 .. Reinforcement Mechanism of Rock Bolts 259 1...j. No bolting . ... s i d e w a l l .. Stress distribution of models I.9 Intersected bolting 9 -:. % --.5 ~ to the opening surface... Normal bolting k ..~:... ..13..--. II and III..~. and (c) no bolts. Stress distribution of models I.. roof ...~ S 10 ... Normal bolting --. Three different bolt distributions are simulated: (a) obliquely intersected with bolt at 67.. and in the same vertical plane. as s h o w n in . - o ~r .. when (3"1 ~ 2(Y2~ vertical walls. v 20 # 10 .. ~. (Y0 r . at roof.. % i ~ 9 "-~-".' - ........ at sidewall.. when Cyl ~ = 2(Y2~ o'1=2o2.--. The tests are p e r f o r m e d u n d e r the plain strain condition. II and III.

The increment of stress is 0. II and III when c~~ 2cy2~ Model No bolts Normal bolts Oblique intersection bolts Maximum displacement (cm) 1.1 MPa horizontally at each step.16.45 1. Damage around opening of models I. . Figure 8.15.260 Chapter 8 Figure 8. Bolts are fully grouted in the model tests.23 1.03 Number of damage elements 20 11 8 'x ~ O'x (a) (b) (~y '~80 90 Oy O'y C'> 500 x 500 500 x 500 IO'x I O'x Figure 8. The test follows the following procedures" (a) Stresses are applied to the horizontal and vertical directions simultaneously.14. II and III when cyl~ 2cy2~ Table 8. with vertical stress kept twice that of the horizontal stress.4. Scaled engineering model with dimensions. Largest displacement and damage of models I.

.. Reinforcement Mechanism of Rock Bolts 261 (b) (c) . The convergent displacements of the tunnel are monitored during the loading... respectively. (c) The vertical stress is increased gradually to 4.0 2... a 1 (MPa) Figure 8..17.1 2 ....0 MPa. 4.. (b) Loading is stopped when the horizontal and vertical stresses reach 1.0 Stress.....0 3..0 MPa while the horizontal stress is kept at 1.... " ~ .~ .. The monitored displacements are presented in Figure 8..16... (b) normal bolts and (c) obliquely intersected bolts. The plastic .0 4.... 9 ..0 MPa. E G) 8- . 2o Tested after 30 days curing J ~':3~)~. It is observed that: (a) The convergent displacement of the rock mass reinforced by the obliquely intersected bolts is generally smaller than that of the rock mass reinforced by normal bolts and the displacement of the roof is reduced by 16~40%..0 MPa and 2. Arrangement of (a) no bolt. Convergent displacements of the tunnel monitored during the loading. / 0 1. i Figure 8.17..

The convergent displacement of the opening decreases significantly and the plastic damage is greatly reduced by bolting. improves the surrounding material properties. as compared to no bolting.15) and similar results were obtained.262 Chapter 8 damage zone occurring in the sidewalls are also smaller for the normal bolting system. (c) Scaled model tests were also performed on circular opening (Figure 8. Normal bolt reduces the displacement of the roof by 14~43%. (b) Bolting in general. .