2022 AGS Victorian Symposium

Digital Geotechnics

The Victorian Chapter of the Australian Geomechanics Society (AGS) is pleased to announce the 2022 AGS Victorian Symposium titled “Digital Geotechnics” to be held on 26 October 2022.

The symposium forms part of the continuing program of events organised by the Victorian Chapter of the AGS. The event will showcase recent developments in digital geotechnics and applications of digital geotechnics in practice. This symposium will be held as a full-day face-to-face event in Melbourne.

The Event

The Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) sector is undergoing a digital revolution with the array of digital technologies quickly gaining momentum within the civil space – but what role will the geo-profession play? Will it remain largely on the periphery or a pioneer in the adoption of digital data and digital technologies?

Digital engineering as a practice area is rapidly evolving and characterised by large quantities of unstructured data/information and many new and emerging technologies that may include; UAVs, photogrammetry and 3D scanning, sensing technologies, common data environments, BIM, CAD and GIS, digital twins, augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR), machine learning, artificial intelligence, parametric and algorithmic modelling and advanced simulations. Recognising the value to the engineer/geologist and successfully implementing these technologies within a ground engineering organisation is a significant challenge at this time.

Despite these challenges, new forms of digital data such as drone survey, LIDAR, InSAR and instrumentation data are becoming commonplace on geotechnical projects and being integrated with ‘traditional’ forms of geotechnical data such as borehole records, survey data, CPT logs etc. Those in the geoprofession, from practitioners to contractors, are increasingly recognising the importance of geodata capture, storage, visualisation, analysis and data sharing in the success of their ground engineering projects.

Integrated digital data on geotechnical projects have the potential to unlock improved geotechnical characterisation, increased collaboration, improved visual representation and sophistication in the ground model and advances in the efficiency of numerical simulation and the extent of the design space explored. Realising these benefits is leading many to recognise the importance of efficient and accurate digital geodata acquisition methods and the need for standardised approaches for data exchange. The days of the paper log are fast coming to an end.

This symposium seeks to provide the geo-profession with insight into the world of digital engineering and will bring together practitioners, researchers, contractors and subject matter experts to share and discuss their expertise on the topic of digital engineering and its application to geotechnical engineering and engineer geology. Best practices, case histories and innovative methods adopted in the field of digital engineering will be presented and discussed.

About the keynote speakers

Professor Yuxia Hu University of Western Australia

Prof. Yuxia Hu obtained her PhD degree in 1991 in costal and offshore engineering. After graduation, she has been working in China, Japan and Australia. After she joined the Geomechanics group (later Centre for Offshore Foundation Systems – COFS) at the University of Western Australia (UWA) in 1992, she started to work with Prof. Mark Randolph to develop a practical approach to analyse soil-foundation interactions involving large deformations of soils – LDFE/RITSS (Large Deformation FE/Remeshing and Interpolation Technique with Small Strain model). The LDFE/RITSS method has been implemented in different commercial software and applied to many offshore soil-structure interaction problems successfully, such as pipeline, spudcan, anchors, skirted foundation, penetrometers and foundation for renewable energy offshore. Prof. Hu has published more than 100 journal and conference papers on the improvement of offshore foundation designs, and corresponding design guidelines. Her contribution to the geotechnical community has been recognised by 2005 IACMAG Junior/Senior Paper Award, 2006 BGA Best Paper Award and 2018 ICE Telford Premium Award. Her research also includes collaborations with local pavement engineers to work on sustainable designs in pavement to serve local geotechnical community. She has served as Head of Department of Civil, Environmental and Mining Engineering in 2018-2021.

Eric Bugeja Chairperson, BuildingSMART Australasia

Eric Bugeja is the Chairperson of BuildingSMART Australasia and an Executive member of the Australasian BIM Advisory Board (ABAB), he has been an advocate for technological change in the AEC sector through his various roles, ranging from: Manufacturing Automation, Start-up advisor, Design manager on multidisciplinary projects, Project director on rail infrastructure projects, Group Manager of a multidisciplinary Architecture and engineering team, and Digital Integration for a Tier 1 Contractor. These roles have provided him with a unique perspective of the opportunities available through the application of technology across various sectors. Harnessing technology to promote collaboration, improve efficiency of design, speed up construction and improve Asset operation and maintenance.

Chris Osborne Senior Geologist, Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions

Chris Osborne is a geologist who specialises in 3D coal resource modelling. He is currently working on the Latrobe Valley Regional Rehabilitation Strategy for the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions.

Chris completed a Bachelor of Science (Honours) at Latrobe University in 1997.

From 1998, Chris worked as a field geologist for the Geological Survey of Victoria (GSV) where he was part of the geological mapping team responsible for producing geological maps and reports.

In 2012, he spent 18 months with a Mantle Mining helping to better define a coal resource near Bacchus Marsh as part of their drilling program. He then returned to the GSV where he was part of the “3D Victoria” team building a 3D, crustal scale geological model of the State.

In 2016, he moved across to Clean Coal Victoria, then to Low Emissions Resources, then to Coal Resources Victoria, still as part of the Department. His work here involved supporting the exploration/mining industry and the Department with specialist analysis of the coal resource model to inform decisions about the utilisation of the brown coal resource. He is currently using the same model and similar skills to inform decisions around the rehabilitation of the Latrobe Valley brown coal mines. Part of this modelling journey has forced him to (attempt to) understand data collection, storage and analysis solutions.


Co-author (non presenter)

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Engineers Australia Member

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Non Member

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AGS Student Member

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.