Introduction to tunnel excavation and Tunnel Boring Machines (TBMs)|Abaqus TBM modeling
Tunnel excavation refers to the process of creating underground passages or tunnels for various purposes such as transportation, mining, or utility installations. It involves the removal of soil, rocks, or other materials to create a hollow space.
A tunnel boring machine (TBM) is a specialized piece of equipment used for tunnel excavation. It is a massive, self-contained machine that can excavate tunnels with remarkable efficiency. TBMs typically consist of a cylindrical cutting head equipped with disc cutters that grind through the soil or rock, while the excavated material is transported out of the tunnel through a conveyor system.
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The importance of analyzing and simulating the tunnel excavation process lies in several key aspects. First, it allows engineers to evaluate the feasibility and efficiency of tunneling projects before construction begins. By simulating the process, they can assess potential risks, estimate costs, and optimize the design and construction methodologies. Simulation also enables engineers to study the behavior of the TBM and its interaction with the ground. Factors such as ground conditions, geological formations, and water table levels can significantly impact the excavation process. By analyzing these variables through simulations, engineers can make informed decisions on the type of TBM to use, the excavation speed, and the necessary support systems. Furthermore, simulating tunnel excavation helps in predicting and mitigating potential hazards such as ground settlement, tunnel collapse, or water ingress. It allows engineers to identify potential issues in advance and design appropriate measures to ensure the safety and stability of the tunnel.
Workshop 1: TBM Tunneling simulation in Abaqus
This tutorial provides a comprehensive demonstration of TBM (Tunnel Boring Machine) simulation in Abaqus. The video is in English and showcases the creation of two parts for analysis: the soil and the liner. The simulation consists of six stages. In each stage, the soil section is removed from the original model, and the liner section is added. The GEOSTATIC step is utilized to define the weight of the soil during the analysis.
Workshop 2: TBM simulation into the saturate soil with dry mix
This tutorial provides a detailed demonstration of utilizing TBM (Tunnel Boring Machine) tunneling technique in Abaqus, specifically focusing on incorporating dry and saturated soil. The soil is represented as a three-dimensional component, divided into two distinct zones to represent the dry and saturated conditions using Mohr-Coulomb plasticity. Additionally, the lining is modeled as a three-dimensional shell composed of concrete material. The analysis consists of several stages: the first stage involves applying soil body force, the second stage involves excavation, the third stage involves relaxation, and finally, the fourth stage applies the lining. For this type of analysis, the soil transient step is deemed appropriate.
Workshop 3: Rock breakage process simulation by TBM rolling cutters in Abaqus
The tunnel boring machine (TBM) has gained significant popularity in tunnel construction due to its fast progress, high efficiency, ability to create well-formed tunnels, and minimal impact on the surrounding environment and safety. The modern era of TBMs began in the early 1950s. After Robbins (1987) summarized the development and application of TBMs from the 1950s to the 1980s, there has been extensive attention given to various applications and models for TBMs over the past 30 years. These include the application of the shield method for urban tunneling, the use of the multi-micro shield tunneling method for large rectangular cross-section tunnels, the application of the compact shield tunneling method for urban underground construction, the implementation of a new hard rock TBM performance prediction model for project planning in blocky rock conditions, the development of a new method to predict TBM performance in mixed-face ground for project planning and optimization, the analysis of TBM performance in highly jointed rock masses and fault zones, and more. Predicting TBM performance and understanding the rock breakage mechanism by TBM cutters have become crucial issues. Numerous experimental models have been designed to predict performance and study the rock breakage mechanism of TBM cutters.
In this simulation, the cutter is represented as a three-dimensional rigid component, while the rock is represented as a deformable part. Selecting the appropriate material model is a crucial factor in obtaining accurate results in this simulation.
Using dynamic explicit analysis is a suitable approach for this specific type of analysis, and it involves considering erosion as an input file for general contact interaction. Following the simulation, it becomes evident that the stone has undergone breakage.
Keywords: Abaqus TBM, Tunnel excavation Abaqus