Road and railway ground anchors: What is at stake?

Ground anchors reinforce the ground in order to retain the face of an excavation and prevent any soil movement. This technology allows for ground stabilization during the construction phase or, alternatively, can provide a permanent solution to secure retaining walls.

Ground anchors are an efficient way of mobilizing dead loads deep in the ground, to resist forces that would otherwise require large gravity foundations. Uses include resisting the forces induced by wind, water pressure or other external loads.

How VSL can help you

VSL provides a comprehensive range of services, including in particular:

  • Drilling operations that require specialist know-how and that need to follow strict site procedures;
  • Anchor testing to confirm the suitability of a particular anchor design for the given ground conditions;
  • Monitoring where electrically isolated anchors are used – for example around railways – to check the integrity of the polyethylene (PE) duct encapsulation and the condition of the corrosion-protection barrier;
  • Stressing anchors to their working load;
  • Testing of bar anchors to determine the external anchor resistance and to demonstrate the bond capacity between the anchor and the soil or rock;
  • Load monitoring and maintenance throughout the structure’s life, on a continuous or periodic basis.

As far as technologies are concerned, VSL’s anchoring systems can be divided into two main categories – strand and bar anchors.

VSL offers a full range of ground anchor solutions, from basic unstressed temporary bar nails, to the most sophisticated post-tensioned electrically isolated strand anchors that can be monitored.

The characteristics of the anchors depend on whether they are tensioned or not, used for rock or soil, and whether they are for temporary or permanent use.

The type of ground anchor is chosen to suit the application, the design, the corrosiveness of the environment, the presence of any stray electrical currents and the permanent protection system required. VSL’s ground anchors comply with the most stringent international specifications with regards to corrosion protection.

What are the VSL road and railway ground anchors solutions?

VSL can offer a comprehensive service, including:

  • Pre-design and consultancy advice to engineers and contractors
  • Drilling
  • Prefabrication and delivery to site
  • Assistance with installation, grouting and supervision
  • Execution of stressing operations including anchor and bar testing
  • Monitoring and maintenance
  • De-tensioning and removal of temporary anchors
  • Optional rental of equipment such as jacks, pumps, mixers and torque wrenches

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