The Deep Foundations Institute (DFI) has announced that Geostabilization International’s Soil Nail Launcher is the winner of its 2018 C William Berringham Innovation Award.
According to the DFI, the Soil Nail Launcher is used to repair shallow slope instabilities at a fraction of the time and cost of traditional technologies.
The system uses a compressed air cannon that can accelerate a 38mm diameter, 6m long steel or fiberglass tube to 400km/h in a single shot.
The DFI has said that dynamic installation results in many distinct benefits over conventional nailing techniques. First, as these high-speed projectiles enter the earth, they generate a shock wave that causes the soil particles to elastically deform or “jump away” from the nail tip. The bars enter the earth without significant abrasion or loss of exterior corrosion protection. The soil particles then collapse onto the bar in a relatively undisturbed state, yielding pullout capacities up to 10 times that of driven or vibrated rods or tubes. Lastly, launched soil nails increase soil density in the nailed area. In contrast, conventional open-hole drilling techniques allow the soil to relax prior to installation, which can adversely affect bond capacity.