Sydney Chapter

Young Geotechnical Professional’s Night

The 2015 Young Geotechnical Professionals’ Night is an opportunity to see four selected presentations by young geotechnical professionals discussing interesting and challenging aspects of their work. After the presentations, you will have a chance to catch up with friends and the presenters over drinks and food provided by the committee. The following presentations will be given during the evening.

David Luk (Aurecon)

Design of Piled Embedded Retaining Walls – A Comparison Between Australian Standards AS4678 and AS5100.3


Published in 2002, the Australian Standard AS4678 has been the principal standard for the design of retaining wall structures in Australia. In recent years, although published as part of the Australian Standard AS5100 for bridge design, AS5100.3 has been increasingly specified as the design standard for retaining wall structures on many projects, particularly those in the road infrastructure space. While both of these standards provide the design requirements for retaining wall structures under Ultimate Limit State (ULS) conditions, there are marked differences in the associated design approaches.

Madeline Kobler (Pells Sullivan Meynink)

Case Study: On-Site Geotechnical Model Validation, 3D Visualisation And Design Change, Castle Hill, Sydney


The geotechnical model for Castle Hill Station was developed using cored borehole data and downhole acoustic imaging combined with a regional understanding of the Sydney basin geology. This identified structural complexity involving the interaction of large scale faulting and smaller scale faulting and jointing. This presentation includes a case study of the geotechnical mapping activities carried out for the project. Some of the typical geotechnical data obtained from on-site geotechnical model validation and use of 3D data visualisation techniques. These techniques enabled a comprehensive assessment of excavation stability at a critical location in the project resulting in a change in design support.

James Cox (ARUP)

Port Hills Rockfall Protection Structures, Christchurch, New Zealand


Significant damage occurred in the areas surrounding Christchurch following the 2011 Canterbury Earthquake sequence. The damage was mainly related to liquefaction, building collapse and rockfall. Earthquake triggered rockfall resulted in deaths and damage to many residential properties. This presentation outlines outline the methodology used for the field investigation, risk assessment and the design of the Rockfall Protection Structures (RPS), allowing residents to return to their homes.

Darshika Palamakumbure (University of Wollongong)

Interacting with Local Government to ensure implementation of Landslide Susceptibility Zoning across the Sydney Basin


The current Landslide Inventory of the Sydney Basin currently contains 1840 landslides (132 falls, 273 flows and 1435 slides). This is estimated to be only 5% of the total number of landslides that exist within the region. Recent work has developed new research methodologies and supporting software tools (GIS mapping) to facilitate effective and consistent landslide susceptibility assessments and modelling over large areas. Potential clients can now access Slide and Flow category landslide susceptibility maps at 10m2 pixel resolution, providing a seamless coverage across all 64 local government areas of the Sydney Basin.

Engineers Australia members participating in AGS technical sessions can record attendance on their personal CPD logs. Members should refer to Engineers Australia CPD policy for details on CPD types, requirements and auditing guidelines.