Numerical Analysis of Segmental Tunnel Linings employing a Hybrid Modeling Approach

Andreas-Nizar Granitzer*, Franz Tschuchnigg

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The structural performance of shield-driven tunnel linings is considerably affected by the existence of segmental joints. Nevertheless, segmental tunnel linings are commonly modelled as isotropic structures in engineering practice, thereby ignoring the joint-induced stiffness reduction in numerical analysis. A more realistic approach is to consider the tunnel structure as continuous ring with adjusted rigidities which is also referred to as indirect-joint model. However, this modeling approach is a complicated task since it requires the definition of anisotropic stiffness parameters. In this context, the present paper introduces a hybrid modeling approach, which combines analytical solutions and numerical studies. Based on extensive numerical studies, anisotropic stiffness parameters are defined to model an existing drainage tunnel (SDT). Finally, a case study is discussed, where the developed indirect-joint model is used to investigate the structural response of the SDT. In this context, particular emphasis is placed on the deformation of the tunnel crown developing throughout the entire construction phase.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
JournalComputational Engineering and Physical Modeling
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 10 Jan 2021


  • 3D finite-element analysis
  • Tunnel
  • Segmental lining
  • Joint stiffness
  • Tunnel heave

Fields of Expertise

  • Sustainable Systems


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