The purpose of this article is to provide information about the topic of geotechnics and related fields, its scope and importance, the tools needed, a history of its beginning and development; In addition, the situation of teaching topics in this field will be mentioned.
Subject and scope of application
Definition and explanation
The subject of geotechnics can be considered as a set of applied fields of soil mechanics and rock mechanics (basically ground materials, derived from the word Geo). At the same time, it should be noted that in many cases the terms soil mechanics and geotechnics are still used interchangeably, and it is pointed out that the term geotechnics (as a technology) and the term soil mechanics (as A branch of knowledge) do not necessarily express a synonymous and exactly the same concept; However, they have a lot in common and in many cases they are interchangeable. In any case, the term geotechnics means the technology of soil and rock materials, so that in addition to it, terms such as geotechnology and geomechanics have also been used. However, considering the variety of words in the field of recognizing the engineering properties of materials such as rock and soil, if it is intended to be concise and concise, a comprehensive term should be used that covers all of the above concepts (theoretical, experimental, and Laboratory on an executive scale or limited) in one word, the same geotechnical term is probably the most appropriate. A look at the use of this term and its derivatives in naming journals and related conferences can confirm this justification. For example, the first and most prestigious journal on soil engineering issues, published since 1948. It started in the UK and is still going on, called the International Journal of Geotechnique. In addition to these explanations and in completing them, it is appropriate to translate the definition given in the introduction to the book “Geotechnical Engineering” by B. M. Das (1993). Exactly quoted here:
“Geotechnical engineering is a sub-branch of civil engineering that studies the engineering properties of natural surface materials and its role is to apply the principles of soil mechanics and rock mechanics in the design of projects such as foundations, retaining structures and earth structures.”
Therefore, considering that the materials studied in geotechnical knowledge are terrestrial (and natural) materials, ie soil and rock, this study and studies are divided into basic sections, each of which contains specific theories and tools. These sections have been described under such headings as soil or rock physics, soil or rock mechanics, soil or rock dynamics, laboratory tests for soil or rock, field experiments, and related tools, and have developed dramatically in recent years. Has been found and in parallel, several books and writings have been published under the same names.
On the other hand, due to the natural nature of soil and rock materials, which are often (almost always) “in place”, geotechnical studies are closely related to the topic of “Engineering Geology” and therefore in executive projects – especially Projects that take place over a large area (such as dam projects) or in a long direction (such as roads and tunnels) – the subject of engineering geology forms the primary foundation of studies and decisions, and to this Reason: In some cases, there is a necessary interaction between engineering geology, soil mechanics, rock mechanics, and geotechnics.
Scope of application of geotechnical knowledge
Any development activity that takes place on the land surface (as well as below the water surface), its support is a bed of rock or soil and, therefore, inevitably related to their properties. Residential and office buildings, silos, towers, roads, stadiums, airports, power plants, road and railway tunnels and underpasses, subways and parking lots, bridges, warehouses, tunnels and water supply canals, Dams, refineries, refineries, etc. are all somehow based on a support or bed of soil or stone. How accurately and what properties and characteristics of soil or rock should be studied in each of these projects depends on various factors, the most important of which are: the strength or resistance of the project site to forces. The internal influences of the place, such as the presence of water, fractures, voids, inhomogeneities, and inequalities, the economic importance and the amount of safety necessary to maintain the safety and security of users, the useful life of the project and how Durability of the properties of the environment in relation to time, factors affecting the stability or damage to the project and its infrastructure and some other factors. Therefore, recognizing the geotechnical properties of the project site should be considered as the first step in studying the engineering infrastructure of the subject; However, the amount of knowledge and how to evaluate and the accuracy required in the identifications and reports themselves depends on the above. Based on this, it can be accepted that such identifications may range from the simplest to the most difficult. For this reason, many buildings and roads have been built and have survived for decades or even hundreds of years, without careful study. On the other hand, some cases of civil works should be designed that require months of study, analysis and accurate measurements to ensure sufficient appropriate and satisfactory behavioral performance of the project.