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BGA 5th annual conference 13 June, ICE, London.

DIARY

The BGA's 5th annual conference at the Institution of Civil Engineers in London, is shaping up to be another packed day highlighting UK geotechnical research and practice.

The event, sponsored by Soil Mechanics, is free to BGA members, although registration is required for catering purposes.

As well as a programme of talks the conference will include poster displays, the prediction competition and plenty of opportunities for networking at lunch, session breaks and an evening drinks reception.

The morning session, will focus on current Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council research projects. These will cover a study of how plant roots increase slope stability (Fraser Bransby, University of Dundee); enhanced formation stiffness measures for controlling ground movements around excavations (Neil Taylor, City University); a constitutive model for anisotropy and destructuration of natural clays (Mohamed Rouainia, University of Newcastle);

discrete piles for infrastructure earth slope stabilisation (Joel Smethurst, University of Southampton); and the behaviour of hydrocarbon reservoir sands and sandstones (Mathew Cooke, Imperial College London).

The afternoon session will include three project examples, including a look at the grouting progress for the hydraulic isolation of the Dounreay Shaft and the effect of deep excavations for Heathrow Terminal 5 on the HExEx and PiccEx tunnels. After this will be the 2007 Cooling Prize winner Mei Cheong (Mott MacDonald) discussing negative skin friction on the pile groups at Wembley Stadium and the 2006 YGES winner Fraser Milne (University of Dundee) on the subject of a debris ow case history at Glen Ogle, Scotland.

The day's events will be followed by an early evening keynote lecture on slope stability and seepage for dummies by Eddie Bromhead. The lecture will highlight a number of cases where neglect of basic principles of geotechnical engineering led to slopes failure - in a sometimes spectacular way.

Following the drinks reception, the evening will conclude with an informal dinner (for which a charge will apply). Registration forms for the conference will shortly be circulated to all BGA members as well as being available at www.

britishgeotech. org. uk. The website also has details for the preliminary programme and the prediction competition.

For poster enquiries please contact the BGA co-ordinator at the ICE, bga@ice. org. uk.

Prediction competition This year's prediction competition to accompany the BGA Annual Conference concerns the estimation of loads developed in permanent concrete props for a section of propped retained cutting on the Channel Tunnel Rail Link in Ashford, Kent. Continuous monitoring of permanent props using vibrating wire embedment strain gauges produced some interesting results. The retaining wall geometry, ground prole and measured total and effective horizontal stress proles before and after wall installation are provided, together with details of the construction sequence and loads in the temporary props.

Below is a photograph and cross section.

Question What are the long-term permanent prop loads?

Full technical details required to make the prediction are available in the news section on the BGA website at www. britishgeotech.org. uk. Entries should to be sent to bga@ice. org. uk by the 31 May.

All entrants are encouraged to be available on the afternoon of the annual conference to be able to receive their prize and nd out what really happened. Details of the conference are available on the BGA website.

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