Engineers Australia

A Perspective On Rolling Dynamic Compaction Research Collaboration Between Industry And Academia

Derek Avalle


In the three to four decades since the Broons Group (formerly Broons Hire) introduced the 4-sided “square” impact roller into Australia in the mid-1980s, collaboration between industry, including consulting and contracting, and universities has been strong. This paper is a personal view on how this collaboration has developed and progressed over time. The paper outlines aspects of historical collaboration between the industrial and academic sectors when it comes to rolling dynamic compaction (RDC), or impact rolling. It is, however, within the last 18 years or so that there has been an acceleration of this collaborative effort. In summary, modelling and numerical studies have been carried out Adelaide and Sydney Universities; physical installations and site studies at Adelaide University; and testing techniques at Adelaide and Monash Universities. Most of these activities have involved the RDC suppliers and contractors, to some extent. The results of these efforts have included the construction of scale model test beds, instrumented ground treatment pads, undergraduate and post-graduate projects, including PhD theses, and numerous published collaborative case study papers. While RDC has provided a fresh and relatively un-researched topic for academic activity, the collaborative research activities and the interest of academics has assisted industry with development and marketing of the technology. Several aspects of the extensive collaboration between industry and academia are addressed, covering a broad view of the topic. In particular, the research initiatives, undergraduate and post-graduate research topics and co-authored technical papers resulting from this collaboration are highlighted.