67th Geomechanics Colloquium 2018

Dear Ladies and Gentlemen,
Dear Colleagues,
Dear Friends of the Austrian Society for Geomechanics.

We want to give you the most interesting numbers to two important conferences on geomechanics, which took place last year in Austria: the 11th Austrian Tunnel Day and the 67th Geomechanics Colloquium.

The Austrian national committee of ITA (International Tunnelling Association) organized the Austrian Tunnel Day on October 10th, 2018, and welcomed 590 people from 11 countries. The participants could listen to 17 presentations (29 authors/co-authors) on special challenges at large projects and on important standards for and innovations in tunnelling. After lunch Prof. Robert Galler (Montanuniversität Leoben), Wolfgang Stipek (PORR Tunnelbau AG) and Irene Schulte (Federation of Austrian Industries, national committee Salzburg) took the chance to grant the Innovation Award, which evolved to an instrument for transnational and interdisciplinary cooperation. This time, the submitted projects have been elaborated by cooperations composed of 21 different institutions and their employees:

BIHS (Bahn-Instandhaltungssysteme Alois Kettl), biprotec GmbH, ELKUCH EISENRING AG, Fachhochschule Münster – University of Applied Sciences, HC-ELECTRIC GMBH, IMM  Maidl & Maidl Beratende Ingenieure GmbH & Co. KG, Kiwa Deutschland GmbH, MC-Bauchemie Müller GmbH & Co. KG, ÖBA KAT2 (Joint venture local site inspection: ILF Group Holding GmbH, IGT Geotechnik und Tunnelbau Ziviltechniker Gesellschaft m.b.H., 3G Gruppe Geotechnik Graz ZT GmbH), ÖBB-Infrastruktur AG, PGGT (Planungsgemeinschaft Tunnelkette Granitztal: Amberg Engineering Ltd, iC consulenten Ziviltechniker GesmbH, IGT Geotechnik und Tunnelbau Ziviltechniker Gesellschaft m.b.H.), PORR Bau GmbH, PORR Deutschland GmbH, Renesco GmbH, STRABAG AG TUNNELBAU, Studiengesellschaft für Tunnel und Verkehrsanlagen – STUVA – e. V., Graz University of Technology, TPH Bausysteme GmbH Österreich

Just brilliant! Because of the great number of excellent submissions, new award categories had to be introduced. Finally, 5 from 11 submissions showed outstanding innovative ideas and concepts and got awarded:

Umweltpreis (Award for environmental care)
EINFALL statt ABFALL – am Beispiel Koralmtunnel, Baulos KAT2: Innovative Verwertung von überschüssigen Feinteilen aus der Materialaufbereitung zur Verbesserung von land- und forstwirtschaftlichen Böden
Dietmar Schubel, Matthias Kager, Johanna Zelger, Erich Kolb – ÖBB-Infrastruktur AG
Helmut Posch, Jennifer Schernitz, Andreas Tauer, Markus Huber – ÖBA KAT2 (Joint venture local site inspection: ILF Group Holding GmbH, IGT Geotechnik und Tunnelbau Ziviltechniker Gesellschaft m.b.H., 3G Gruppe Geotechnik Graz ZT GmbH)
Roman Schaffer – external advisor


Tunnelling 1st Award 
Vorgefertigte Einschubmodule (PCE) für Querschlagsabschlüsse
Robert Binder – biprotec GmbH


Tunnelling 2nd  Award
Entwicklung eines wasserdurchlässigen Ringspaltmaterials für eine einschalige dränierende Tübbingbauweise
Christian Thienert – Studiengesellschaft für Tunnel und Verkehrsanlagen – STUVA – e. V.
IMM  Maidl & Maidl Beratende Ingenieure GmbH & Co. KG
MC-Bauchemie Müller GmbH & Co. KG


Tunnel Operation 1st Award
„Modulares Drainagespülsystem-Bahn“ (MDB) – mehr Effizienz bei der Instandhaltung von Eisenbahntunnel
Gerald Zwittnig, Johann Lemmerer – ÖBB-Infrastruktur AG
PGGT (Planungsgemeinschaft Tunnelkette Granitztal: Amberg Engineering Ltd, iC consulenten Ziviltechniker GesmbH, IGT Geotechnik und Tunnelbau Ziviltechniker Gesellschaft m.b.H.)
BIHS (Bahn-Instandhaltungssysteme Alois Kettl)


Tunnel Operation 2nd Award
Druckneutrale Dreh-Schiebetür
Marcus Römer, Fabian Mauchle – ELKUCH EISENRING AG


Thank you for the submissions and congratulations to the winners.

In the evening, the ITA with its sponsors (BASF Performance Products GmbH, DSI Underground Austria GmbH, Epiroc Deutschland GmbH, Liebherr-Werk Bischofshofen GmbH) celebrated that successful and interesting conference day with 320 participants and guests at a get-together at the Fortress Salzburg.


On Thursday (October 11th) and Friday (October 12th), the annual Geomechanics Colloquium with 870 participants from 22 countries took place. The event started with a honorific speech for Baurat h.c. Hon. Prof. Dipl. Ing. Dr. h.c. Franz Pacher, who died on March 3rd, 2018, at the age of 99, and for which the geomechanics community still grieves. The conference day continued with presentations on the application of special measures for geotechnical problems. A speech (PDF, in German only) on the 50th anniversary of the Austrian Society for Geomechanics by Dr. Georg M. Vavrovsky followed. The morning ended with a short address to the participants and with the awarding of the medal of Salzburg to Prof. Dr. Wulf Schubert and to Dr. Georg. M. Vavrovsky by Dr. Wilfried Haslauer, governor of Salzburg. At the afternoon, first the Leopold Müller Award was granted to Dipl.-Ing. Dr.techn. Georg M. Ausweger for his outstanding PhD thesis with the title “Influences of Water Level Changes on the Behaviour of a Slow Moving Landslide – In-situ Measurements, Model Tests and Numerical Analyses.” That followed presentations and discussions on the selection of tunnel boring machines. Afterwards, the participants had the opportunity to listen to some fine classical music in the Salzburg Residence and to network with delicious food and drinks at the congress dinner (721 participants) in the Stieglkeller restaurant organized by the Austrian Society for Geomechanics and sponsored by Epiroc Deutschland GmbH and DSI Underground Austria GmbH. On Friday, the conference came up with informative contributions on model selection for design and construction and on new developments in tunnel supports for all persevering participants. On these two days, 26 presentations/speeches (77 authors/co-authors) were given.

Several lecturers granted permission to distribute their lecture slides and to provide them for download.

The articles to each presentation have been published in the October issue (contributions to the 67th Geomechanics Colloquium) and in the December issue (contributions to the 11th Austrian Tunnel Day), respectively, of the societies' journal “Geomechanics and Tunnelling” and are open to our members.

Further interesting details:

  • In addition to the general assembly of the Austrian Society for Geomechanics, another 8 smaller meetings took place on the conference days.
  • In the course of the conference field trip 21 participants could gain insight into the construction lots SBT1.1 and SBT2.1 of the Semmering Base Tunnel, every time worth seeing!
  • On Thursday, the nice locations Hochburg-Ach, Oberndorf and Burghausen have been showed to 4 ladies as part of the accompanying persons program.
  • Responsible for the success of the Tunnel Day and for the Geomechanics Colloquium, and for the welfare of the participants have been 17 employees of the Congress Salzburg and 9 employees of the Austrian Society for Geomechanics.
  • For the first time, instead of limiting the projection area of the presentation to 1/3 (projection on the centred area of the panorama screen only) the projection area has been extended to 2/3 (presentation on the centred and right-hand sided area) at one lecture. The lecturers of future events will be informed about this opportunity in time, with which more information can be communicated to the audience within the same presentation time.
  • From Wednesday to Friday, the conferences were accompanied by a technical exhibition. This time, 12 institutions presented their current findings at the university booth and the following 62 exhibitors showed their products and services:


3GSM GmbH, Adolf Würth GmbH & Co KG, Albatros Engineering GmbH, ARVI b.v., Austin Powder GmbH, Avesco AG, BASF Performance Products GmbH, BAUER MAT Slurry Handling Systems, Bauernfeind GmbH, Bekaert Maccaferri Underground Solutions BVBA, Belloli SA, Contec Fiber AG, Danish Fibres, Desoi GmbH, DIBIT Messtechnik GmbH, DSI Underground Austria GmbH, Durstmüller GmbH, EPIROC Österreich GmbH, EPLASS project collaboration GmbH, Erkat, Ernst & Sohn Verlag für Architektur und technische Wissenschaften GmbH & Co. KG, Geoconsult ZT GmbH, Geodata ZT GmbH, germanBelt Systems GmbH, Ha-Be Betonchemie GmbH & Co KG, Häny Austria GmbH, Herrenknecht AG, Hottinger Baldwin Messtechnik GmbH, iC Consulenten Ziviltechniker GmbH, IGT Ziviltechniker GmbH, IMB-Spirk GesmbH, ITC SA, KEMROC Spezialmaschinen GmbH, KrampeHarex FIBRIN GmbH, Liebherr-Werk Bischofshofen GmbH, MAPEI GesmbH, MAXAM Österreich GmbH, maxGEO Messtechnik GmbH, MC-Bauchemie GmbH, Measurand – Solexperts, METCAM AG, Minova MAI GmbH, Minroc Bohrausrüstungen GmbH, Mooser Schwingungstechnik GmbH, Nevaris Bausoftware GmbH, ÖSTU-STETTIN Hoch- und Tiefbau GmbH, Plaxis bv, Pöyry Austria GmbH, Rascor Tunnel- und Spezialtiefbau GmbH, RK safetec GmbH, Rockmore International GmbH, Rowa Tunnelling Logistics AG, SIKA Österreich GmbH, SKAVA Consulting ZT GmbH, SPESAN Handels-GmbH, TPH Bausysteme GmbH, Tunnelbauratte UG, VÖBU Vereinigung Österr. Bohr- und Spezialtiefbauunternehmungen, VSV-Engineering, WEBAC-Chemie GmbH, Wiener Linien GmbH & Co KG, Wimmer Felstechnik GmbH


Additional summaries about the Austrian Tunnel Day and the Geomechanics Colloquium:

  • Federation of Austrian Industries: Link (in German only)
  • com: Link
  • November issue of the Austrian “Baublatt” (magazine for construction), p. 68-71: Link (in German only)
  • Tunnel-Online.info (contribution on the Innovation Award): Link (in German only)

Finally, on behalf of the Austrian Society for Geomechanics we thank our 21 sponsors of the colloquium without them the organisation of such events in this quality would not be possible:

Porr Bau GmbH, Austin Europe GmbH, Herrenknecht AG, STRABAG AG, Geoconsult ZT GmbH, ÖSTU-STETTIN Hoch- und Tiefbau GmbH, TPH Bausysteme GmbH, Avesco AG, Sandvik Mining and Construction GmbH, 3G Gruppe Geotechnik Graz ZT GmbH, IGT Geotechnik und Tunnelbau Ziviltechniker Gesellschaft m.b.H., DSI Underground Austria GmbH, ITC SA, Jäger Bau GmbH, Minova Mai GmbH, MOLDAN Baustoffe GmbH & Co KG, Multiserwis Sp. z o.o., Pöyry Austria GmbH, Rascor International AG, SPESAN Handels-GmbH, Webac-Chemie GmbH


Best regards and Glück Auf!

Prof. Dipl.-Ing. Dr.techn. Gerald Zenz and Dipl.-Ing. Alexander Kluckner



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