Caissons are mainly realized in homogeneous soil layers of sand and gravel below the ground water table. A variation of the classic method could be used in road construction. The method of guided caissons meets modern requirements.
It uses a heavy portal crane to lower precast concrete elements. The lowering of these segments is executed sectionwise. The crane is situated on rails. After the completion of one section, the adjacent section is lowered. The guidance through the portal crane guarantees the necessary accuracy of the movement to provide the joint-tightness between the sections.
The repetition of the activities makes it possible to accelerate the procedure and to improve the efficiency. The aim of the research project is to optimize the shape of the cutting edge considering the forces effecting the concrete construction and the portal crane. For this goal large scale laboratory tests are conducted.
Additionally numerical simulations with the Discrete Element Method are conducted to simulate the penetration process of cutting edges into the soil.
Further work concentrates on the management of risks for this innovative construction method. A probabilistic risk management method is applied to assess the risks of the method quantitatively.