ABSTRACT

Direct determination of the deformation modulus of rock mass needs sophisticated testing equipment, timeconsuming processes and experienced technical staff. However, this modulus has a crucial importance for all rock engineering project to be constructed on or in a rock mass. For this reason, indirect determination of deformation modulus of rock mass has been attractive subject for rock engineers and engineering geologists. For this reason, during the last two decades, several empirical equations based on statistical analysis and several other soft computing algorithms for indirect determination of deformation modulus of rock masses have been proposed. In the present study, a critical review on these approaches is performed and a summary is given. For the purpose of the study, an extensive literature survey is carried out and the approaches suggested are discussed.

INTRODUCTION

Depending on the increase in World population, new human needs such as high buildings, transportation and energy also increase. As a result of these needs, new infrastructures such as roads, railroads, tunnels, viaducts, dams, ports etch have been constructed and will be constructed. During the project and construction stages of these infrastructures, the deformation modulus of rock mass is necessary. However, field tests to determine this parameter directly are time consuming, expensive and the reliability of the results of these tests is sometimes questionable (Hoek and Diederichs, 2006). For this reason, indirect determination methods can be preferred if the other rock mass and intact rock properties are known well. Considering this reason, during the last two decades, several researchers have suggested empirical equations based on statistical analysis and soft computing algorithms for indirect determination of deformation modulus of rock masses. The main purpose of the present study discusses the approaches suggested for estimation of deformation modulus of rock masses.

The static modulus of deformation is among the parameters that best represent the mechanical behaviour of a rock and of a rock mass, in particular when it comes to underground excavations. The deformation modulus is, therefore, a cornerstone of many geomechanical analyses (Palmstorm and Singh, 2001). The deformation modulus is the most representative parameter describing the pre-failure mechanical behavior of any engineering material (Jiang et al., 2009). However, deformation modulus of a rock mass is affected by various rock mass and intact rock properties as well as environmental conditions.

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