Control of cost overruns on major construction project through adequate site investigation

Dr. Bill Bamford


Financial risks are incurred whenever a major excavation project is planned and constructed. Geotechnical investigations may be performed to minimize some of those risks.

The strength of soil and rock may affect the STABILITY of excavations, which is often considered of paramount importance, but the ABRASIVITY and EXCAVATABILITY of materials may affect the successful construction of a project, and should also be investigated and quantified.   Appropriate test procedures will be described, and the two empirical prediction systems best able to predict rippability for surface excavations, and the performance of Tunnel Boring Machines, will be explained.

About Bill BamfordBill Bamford sml

For more than 44 years Dr Bamford has been lecturing, performing research and managing a rock testing laboratory at the University of Melbourne. During this time he has had vast experience with comparing geotechnical tests developed in different countries with different manufacturers of rock excavating equipment, as well as testing to predict the performance of rock excavating machinery in different types of rock. He is able to compare the performances of various pieces of equipment in particular situations and has developed standard suites of tests relevant to Diamond Drilling, Rotary Drilling, Percussive Drilling (Down Hole), Percussive Drilling (Top Hammer), Road Headers, Raise & Shaft Borers, Tunnel Boring Machines, Trenching, and Strain Burst risk assessment.

Dr Bamford is currently an honorary Principal Fellow and Associate Professor in the Melbourne School of Engineering in the University of Melbourne. His specialisations include rock mechanics, mine design, geotechnical engineering and also held the position of Vice-President for the International Society for Rock Mechanics for 8 years. Other appointments include being the National Chairman of the Australian Geomechanics Society and of the Australasian Tunnelling Society. Dr Bamford’s qualifications include a Bachelor of Engineering in Applied Geology, with Honours Class 2A from the University of NSW, a Master of Engineering from the University of Melbourne, and a Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Melbourne. Prior to the establishment of Bamford Rock Testing Services, Dr Bill Bamford was employed at Coffey International where he headed the specialty rock testing department for a period of 2 years, performing numerous specialist tests for mining and civil clients globally.

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.