Permafrost Engineering

With increased industrial activity in Canada’s North, it has become critical to understand the unique engineering challenges and environmental considerations when working in permafrost regions. The aims of this course are to provide a general introduction to permafrost engineering. Short course themes include: 1) Surface Features (Landforms) in Permafrost Areas; 2) Ground Ice and Ground Ice Landforms; 3) Ground Thermal Regime in Permafrost Areas; 4) Thermal Properties of Frozen and Unfrozen Soils; 5) Heat Flow Equations; 6) Site Investigation in Permafrost Areas; 7) Frozen Soils Mechanical Properties; 8) Mechanics of Thawing Ground; 9) Freezing of Soils and Frost Heave Theory; 10) Foundations in Permafrost; 11) Slope Stability in Permafrost; and 12) Case Histories.

Outcomes: •To have a working knowledge of logistic challenges of building in Northern Regions. •To understand the origin and different types of ground ice. •To know how to determine the existing thermal regime and impact of changing environmental conditions on this regime. •To understand the unique behavior of freezing, frozen and thawing soils and understand how to design for these conditions. •To know how to evaluate and design foundations and slopes in permafrost. •To be exposed to case histories related to hydrocarbon pipelines in permafrost, mine design, tailings impoundments under Arctic conditions and pile foundation support systems in regions of saline permafrost.