RSK geophysical engineer Matt Stringfellow has had an article published in the May issue of Rail Professional magazine.
;In ‘Focusing on geophysics’, Matt discusses the advantages that ground penetrating radar (GPR) based surveys have over intrusive alternatives and outlines how RSK can help with this and other geophysical services. Matt also considers the need for ground investigations to be carried out across the UK rail network because of Victorian-era infrastructure. He points out that this was constructed before engineering best practices came into being, so many embankments are constructed of unsuitable materials. Matt’s solution for these investigations is to use GPR and other geophysical methods. He said, “While much data can be gathered using ‘traditional’ site investigation methods such as excavation and drilling on problematic hot spots of the network, geophysical techniques are being increasingly used as rapid reconnaissance tools to assess subsurface properties rapidly over large areas without ground disturbance for the benefit of the whole network.” Recognising that geophysics is not always appropriate but asking that it always be considered, Matt concludes, “There is no magic bullet for the investigation of the rail network. Geophysics tells you how a particular physical property varies over a larger area, whereas a borehole gives detail at one location. Cost dictates a mixture of both. “2016 looks like it will provide many further new opportunities across the spectrum of classic and high-speed rail projects and, with the advent of new, improved survey technologies, the future is bright for non-destructive ground investigation.” You can read the full article online (pp.121–122). For more information, please contact Matt Stringfellow.