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"From the Geo-Institute Forums"

ecuscino | Created: 30 Jun 2023 | Updated: 13 Jul 2023
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A curious post reminds us that while our geotechnical eyes are constantly on the ground, sometimes the understanding we seek may come from above….

A Darwinian Link to Geotechnical Engineering

ecuscino | Created: 07 Mar 2024 | Updated: 08 Mar 2024
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Review: On the horizontal thrust of a mass of sand (G. Darwin, 1883) By Michael Bennett, P.E., M.ASCE (A.G.E.S., Inc., King of Prussia, PA) In 1883, the British Empire stood...

A Geotech Summer Playlist

ecuscino | Created: 22 May 2023 | Updated: 22 May 2023
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Maintain and update your geotechnical seasonal soundtrack with these suggestions from member blogger James Press.

A Geotechnical Engineer's Letter to Santa

ecuscino | Created: 23 Dec 2022 | Updated: 23 Dec 2022
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It has been well over two decades since I last wrote you, and I must apologize for neglecting this annual communique. I think I’ve been a pretty good engineer this year....

A Site Visit for St. Nicholas

ecuscino | Created: 21 Dec 2023 | Updated: 22 Dec 2023
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Deep Foundations
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‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the cubicles, Santa’s Geotech Elves wiped ice off their cuticles....

An ethereal discovery: the connection between soil mechanics and the dawn of relativity in physics

ecuscino | Created: 15 May 2024 | Updated: 17 May 2024
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Scientific discoveries sometimes seem to come right out of the ether - sometimes literally! Meet Osborne Reynolds (of fluid mechanics fame) and learn about the surprising connections between his work on the dilatancy of granular materials and the beginnings of the science of soil mechanics.

Career Day

ecuscino | Created: 22 Nov 2022 | Updated: 22 Nov 2022
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It’s Career Day. Can you convince a room full of fourth graders to become geotechnical engineers in ten minutes or less?

Foundations from History: The Twin Towers

ecuscino | Created: 11 Sep 2023 | Updated: 11 Sep 2023
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Foundations from History: The Twin Towers By Michael Bennett, P.E. (A.G.E.S., Inc., King of Prussia, PA) Author’s Note: This piece is dedicated to the memory of the victims of the...

Get Ready for Geo-Congress 2024 - with NC State Graduate Students!

ecuscino | Created: 24 Feb 2024 | Updated: 24 Feb 2024
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Get Ready for Geo-Congress 2024 with NC State Graduate Students! by Cassie Gann-Phillips, S.M.ASCE, and Marlee Reed, S.M.ASCE The most wonderful time of year (as a geotech professional) is upon...

Jazz Age Geotechnical Engineering, Part 3: Foundations, featuring Yankee Stadium

ecuscino | Created: 19 Dec 2023 | Updated: 19 Dec 2023
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What did geotechnical design and construction look like in 1923? Member blogger Michael Bennett reviews the 1923 textbook "Foundations, Abutments, and Footing." Part 3 covers Foundations and includes a case study of the 1923 Yankee Stadium.

Jazz Age Geotechnical Engineering: Part 2, Excavation, featuring the Lincoln Memorial

ecuscino | Created: 20 Nov 2023 | Updated: 20 Dec 2023
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What did geotechnical design and construction look like in 1923? What's changed since then -- and what hasn't? In this series, member blogger Michael Bennett reviews the 1923 textbook "Foundations, Abutments, and Footing" to see what the practices of a century ago might suggest for the future. Part 2: "Excavation"

Jazz Age Geotechnical Engineering: Part 4, Foundations and Piles

ecuscino | Created: 02 Jul 2024 | Updated: 08 Jul 2024
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Review of Foundations, abutments and footings (Hool and Kinne, Eds., 1923), Section 3: Foundations (Part B) By Michael Bennett, P.E., M.ASCE (Gannett Fleming – Audubon, PA) The second half of...

Jazz Age Geotechnical Engineering: Section 1, Soil Investigation

ecuscino | Created: 25 May 2023 | Updated: 20 Nov 2023
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What did geotechnical design and construction look like in 1923? What's changed since then -- and what hasn't? In this series, member blogger Michael Bennett reviews the 1923 textbook "Foundations, Abutments, and Footing" to see what the practices of a century ago might suggest for the future. Part 1: "Soil Investigation"

More Pressing Matters

tvlasova | Created: 18 Aug 2022 | Updated: 02 Sep 2022
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By James Press, EIT, Geotechnical Engineering Associate, Aterra Solutions Hello, Geo-Institute faithful! I’m very excited to present the first edition of a new column: More Pressing Matters . I’ll be...

Q1 Progress Report: G-I Videogame Development

ecuscino | Created: 24 Jan 2023 | Updated: 24 Jan 2023
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"I wanted to provide some updates on “A Geotechnical Adventure” (working title) ahead of the public demo currently scheduled for beta in March (will likely need to push this back, again). "

Rejected Keynote Proposal for Geo-Congress 2023

ecuscino | Created: 31 Mar 2023 | Updated: 31 Mar 2023
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We had several proposals for our keynote addresses for Geo-Congress. Here's one of the ones that we ended up not choosing.

Soundtrack to the Summer '24

ecuscino | Created: 17 Jun 2024 | Updated: 18 Jun 2024
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Member blogger James Press assembles a geotechnical playlist for Summer 2024: music that speaks of frustration, desperate desire, triaxial test results, pore water pressure matches, the consolidation settlement of soils, and more.

Spooky Soil Mechanics

ecuscino | Created: 30 Oct 2023 | Updated: 30 Oct 2023
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A special guest lecturer presents his award lecture "Spooky Soil Mechanics: A More Ghoul-omb Approach"

The Engineer's Field Book of Frights

ecuscino | Created: 28 Oct 2022 | Updated: 28 Oct 2022
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Some projects seem scary. For us, it’s just another day on the job.

The Johnstown Flood of 1889: A Catastrophe of Civil Engineering (Part 1)

ecuscino | Created: 13 Jan 2023 | Updated: 20 Apr 2023
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First post in our new Geotechnical History blog, and part 1 of a series on the 1889 Johnstown Flood. In this post: The why, when, and how of the construction of the dam that eventually became known as the South Fork Dam. (This post revised Feb. 16, 2023)

The Johnstown Flood of 1889: A Catastrophe of Civil Engineering (Part 2)

ecuscino | Created: 24 Feb 2023 | Updated: 20 Apr 2023
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Part 2 of a series on the 1889 Johnstown Flood presented by our new Geotechnical History Blog. In this post: the replacement, breach, and abandonment of the Western Reservoir, and its rebuilding as the South Fork Dam.

The Johnstown Flood of 1889: A Catastrophe of Civil Engineering (Part 3)

ecuscino | Created: 04 Mar 2023 | Updated: 20 Apr 2023
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Part 3 of a series on the 1889 Johnstown Flood presented by our new Geotechnical History Blog. In this post: the weakening of the South Fork Dam, the increasing frequency of floods in Johnstown, and an approaching storm.

The Johnstown Flood of 1889: A Catastrophe of Civil Engineering (Part 4)

ecuscino | Created: 17 Mar 2023 | Updated: 20 Apr 2023
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The efforts to save the dam, its failure, the possible geotechnical mechanisms of the failure, and the horrific consequences.

The Johnstown Flood of 1889: A Catastrophe of Civil Engineering (Part 5)

ecuscino | Created: 18 Apr 2023 | Updated: 20 Apr 2023
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The aftermath of the Johnstown Flood: relief efforts, journalism, analysis, and lessons learned. This post is the conclusion of the series and includes references.

Why Study Geo-History?

ecuscino | Created: 03 May 2024 | Updated: 06 May 2024
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As we approach the centenary of Terzaghi's pioneering work Erdbaumechanik, looking back can bring big benefits for the future.