The completion of preparatory works on the North Queensland Stadium site has seen the installation of temporary fencing and demolition of existing structures. However, it has been the soil settling tests that have involved some unique equipment.
One of the key design criteria for building the new stadium is the management of differential settlement. Differential settlement refers to how the layers of soil respond when load is placed on the site and the ground is compacted. Due to existing ground conditions, how those layers behave can vary, so undertaking tests is an important part of the building process.
Assessments conducted on the stadium site to date have included detailed geotechnical investigation and computer modelling. To verify the modelling on site soil settling tests were also undertaken.
This testing process involved compacting mounds of soil in various locations on the site, with settlement plates placed within these mounds to measure the extent of the settlement.
A specialised piece of equipment with a unique oblique roller or HEIC (High Energy Impact Compaction) was then used to compact the upper layers of the ground. Due to its shape, the roller imposes an increased compression load.
The results of these soil settling tests will provide assurances of the modelling and assumptions made based on the geotechnical investigations and are an important part of ensuring the ground is properly prepared before the building of the stadium structures commences.