Monthly Archives: December 2014

Vice President Paul Schmall to Receive Wallace Hayward Baker Award

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Paul Schmall

Paul Schmall

Moretrench is very pleased to announce that Vice President and Chief Engineer  Paul C. Schmall, Ph.D. P.E., has been selected as the 2015 recipient of the Wallace Hayward Baker Award,  which will be presented at IFCEE in San Antonio in March 2015.

This prestigious award was established in 2000 by the Geo-Institute of the American Society for Civil Engineers in recognition of the creative and innovative contributions of the late Dr. Wallace Hayward Baker to the field of ground modification.  It is given annually in recognition of “ingenious innovation in the field of ground modification…resourceful development of a new technology or the creative application of existing technology to achieve field performance not previously demonstrated.”

This award recognizes Paul’s more than 26 years of dedication to the advancement of our industry, and to Moretrench.  Please join with us in congratulating him on this well-deserved milestone achievement.”

Arthur B. Corwin

President & CEO


Moretrench to Bring its Ground Freezing Expertise to the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant

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FukushimaKajima Corporation of Tokyo, Japan, has contracted with Geocomp of Acton, MA, to provide engineering services on the construction and evaluation of a frozen groundwater barrier around the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant.   Geocomp has subcontracted with Moretrench to assist with their construction experience.

Geocomp and Moretrench will provide Kajima with assessments of comparable ground freezing experiences from around the world. Sharing of these technological achievements will enhance the design, construction and performance of the Fukushima Ice Wall.  Moretrench and Geocomp will also assist in evaluation of the design, construction quality assurance and performance testing of the frozen barrier.

Moretrench has been resolving complex subsurface challenges using ground freezing technology for more than 35 years. In addition to mass freezing for tunnel jacking at Boston’s Big Dig–the largest single ground freezing operation ever undertaken in North America– Moretrench recently successfully completed horizontal ground freezing to facilitate NATM tunneling for the East Side Access Northern Boulevard Crossing, one of the most challenging aspects of the overall project to date.  Read more about this project here.

Construction Considerations Are Key in Closure Planning for Coal Ash Ponds

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Mark Johnson, PG and Kent Nilsson, PE

When faced with a variety of options for coal ash pond closure, use a holistic approach rather than choosing what seems to be the quickest or cheapest on paper.

Closure and remediation solutions for coal ash ponds, or impoundments, vary greatly. Assuming the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) promulgates the expected proposed Subtitle D regulations, technical options are plentiful, and the vast majority will be viable for most sites. Among the choices are capping, dewatering and/or stabilizing, consolidating into a new landfill, disposing off site, converting to wetlands, or any combination of these options.

There is no one-size-fits-all option, so it’s important to familiarize yourself with the advantages and disadvantages of each. This is especially important if the planning design and construction activities occur at an open and active facility. A successful closure approach accounts for the size of the pond, dewatering requirements and methods, final site use, integration of any remediation efforts, constructability, site layout, and long-term costs.

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