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Ground Freezing and Climate Change

GeoStudio provides comprehensive tools for analyzing ground freezing and climate change.

The analytical challenge

The thermal response of the ground can be a major concern for many engineering and earth science problems.  Some typical problems include the degradation of permafrost due to construction or climate change, artificial ground freezing during construction activities, and the effect of convective heat transfer on earth embankments or soil cover performance.  Many of these problems involve interaction with the hydrogeological system and climate.

The GeoStudio solution

GeoStudio can consider heat transfer with phase change, due to conduction and convection. A wide range of problems may be analyzed given the wide range of boundary conditions available. For example, a ‘convective surface’ boundary condition can simulate an artificial ground freezing system with the cooling fluid flowing through a pipe. The land-climate interaction boundary condition can model the effect of net radiation, air temperature, wind speed, and snow depth on ground temperatures. Add-In constitutive models for SIGMA/W or SLOPE/W can use TEMP/W results to assess deformation or stability change given temperature-dependent ground strengths.


Solution Examples

Explore documented examples of how GeoStudio can effectively analyze ground freezing and climate change problems.

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Freezing Around a Buried Pipeline

Excessive frost heave or settlements are major design and operational issues for hydrocarbon pipelines in permafrost regions. For example, a chilled gas pipeline may lead to frost heave. TEMP/W can be used to model the influence of these pipelines on the temperatures within surrounding soil.

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Mineshaft Freezing

Artificial ground freezing is used in many engineering projects to excavate and construct mine shafts, tunnels or other underground structures through water bearing, often unstable, ground formations. TEMP/W can evaluate the freeze wall growth for a mine shaft project.

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Surface Energy Balance

The surface energy balance boundary condition in TEMP/W can be used to evaluate heat transfer near the ground surface given climatic conditions. Consequently, this type of analysis may be used to investigate the thermal response of soil covers overlying waste materials, including the influence of slope direction.

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Thermosyphons are used to harness cold weather to maintain frozen conditions in the soil. The thermosyphon boundary condition in TEMP/W can be used to determine if a permafrost zone can be maintained beneath heated infrastructure, e.g. a building, for an average climate year.

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Related Products

GeoStudio's integrated products work in combination to provide effective analysis of ground freezing and climate change.



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Explore all solutions

GeoStudio's integrated products enable you to work across a broad range of engineering use cases.