Slope Stability in Jointed Rock

The orientation of planes of inherent weakness (joints) with reference to an excavation in rock is the critical factor determining stability. The purely frictional 'residual' strength remaining following the breakdown of initial cohesion is the only strength which can be counted on to resist sliding for the long term. A simple method of resolving driving and resisting forces in three dimensions along joint intersections 'undercut' by the excavation is presented. Contrary to the case of slope failure in soils, it is shown how significant changes in the slope angle sometimes have no effect on the degree of stability present in rock slopes. Wall control by reorientation of the slope, the use of cable bolts and water diversion are briefly discussed.
Keywords: excavation, factor of safety, normal force, Queen's University, sin, slope stability, Failure, failures, Joint sets, Rock, Rocks, Slopes, Stability, Waters
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