Name: BARTON, Nicholas
Education: University of London, King's College,1966 - BSc (Eng) Honours, in Civil Engineering. Imperial College, London, 1971 - PhD in Rock Mechanics, on Rock Slope Stability and Shear Strength of Fractures.
2000 - present Principal, Nick Barton &
Associates (Norway and Brazil)
2000 - Senior International Consultant, NGI,
1990 - 1999 Technical Adviser, Rock Engineering
and Reservoir Mechanics Division, NGI, Oslo
1984 - 1989 Division Director, Dam, Rock
and Avalanche Division, NGI, Oslo.
1983 - 1984 Manager of Geomechanics, Terra
Tek Inc., Salt Lake City, Utah.
1980 - 1983 Senior Staff Consultant, Terra
Tek Inc., Salt Lake City, Utah.
1971 - 1980 Senior Engineer, Dam and Rock
Group, NGI, Oslo.
• US National Committee for Rock Mechanics 1975 Research Award for paper: "Engineering Classification of Rock Masses for the Design of Tunnel Support"
• Geological Society of America 1978 Burwell Award for paper: "The Shear Strength of Rock and Rock Joints"
• 8th Laurits Bjerrum Memorial Lecture, Oslo, 1985.
• 4th Manuel Rocha Memorial Lecture, Lisbon, 1987.
• 12th Prague Geotechnical Lecture 2004.
• Doctor Honoris Causa honorary doctor degree, University of Cordoba, Argentina, 2004.
• 10th Nonveiller Lecture, Zagreb, 2011.
• 6th Mueller Lecture, ISRM 2011, Beijing.
• NFF 'Gullfeisel', Norway 2011.
• 6th Sun Jun Chair lecture, Shanghei, China, 2011.
• Athenian Lecture, 2014
• 6th Raul Marsal Lecture, Mexico, 2014.
• Lifetime in tunnelling medal, Turkish National Tunnelling Group, 2015.
• 6th Raul Marsal Lecture, Mexico, 2016,
• Suklje Lecture, Slovenian Geotechnical Society, 2021
Consulted on rock engineering problems in following 41 countries, on road and rail tunnels, tunnels and caverns for hydropower, rockfill dams, rock stress measurement, nuclear waste disposal research, rock slope stability, pre-grouting, dam abutment stability. (Norway, Germany, Kenya, Peru, South Africa, Surinam, Papua New Guinea, Greece, USA, Canada, Netherlands, Sweden, Taiwan, Israel, Hong Kong, China, Turkey, England, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, Italy, Kashmir, Brazil, Spain, Wales, Australia, Venezuela, Chile, Dominican Republic, Panama, Denmark, Finland, India, Iran, Colombia, Ecuador, Bhutan, Tajikistan, Sri Lanka, United Arab Emirates).
Keynote lectures (K), Panelist reports (P), Moderator
reports (M), and General reports (G) at international
symposia and congresses (see publication list):
Capri 1977 (P), Berkeley 1982 (K), Lisbon 1983
(P), Montreal ISRM 1987 (M), Loen 1990 (K), Istanbul
1993 (K), (P), Tokyo ISRM 1995 (K), Sydney 1996
(K), Taipei 1996 (K), Shimla 1998 (K), Cancun
NARMS 1998 (G), Santos S. American Rock Mech.
Congress,1998 (K), Paris ISRM 1999 (G), Singapore
2000 (K), São Paulo 2002 (K), Three Gorges
China 2004 (K), Cordoba-Argentina 2004 (K), Kyoto
ARMS 2004 (K), Cartagena, Colombia, and Bogota,
Colombia, and San Jose, Costa Rica: S. American
Rock Mech. Congresses (K) 2006, 2008, 2009, Tehran
ARMS 2008 (K), Rock Dumps, Perth, 2008 (K), ISRM
Eurock, Croatia 2009 (K), Hong Kong Tunnelling
Conf. 2009 (K), Tenerife 3rd.Volcanic Rocks workshop,
2010 (K), Prague, Underground Constructions, 2010
(K), Lima VIIth S. Amer. Rock Mech. Cong. 2010 (K), Bangalore, ICUST, 2011 (K), 10th Nonveiller Lecture, Zagreb, 2011, Roorkee, 3rd. Indorock 2011 (K), Beijing, 13th ISRM Cong. 6th Müller Lecture, 2011 (K), 6th Sun Jun Chair lecture, Shanghai, Hydropower &Dams, Tehran, 2012 (K), Chinese Eng. Academy, Tunnel Risk, Wuhan, 2012 (K), Eurock, Vigo, Spain, 2014 (K). Empirical Methods in Mining, Lima, 2014 (K), Fractured Reservoirs, Dubai, 2014 (K), Shotcrete, Sandefjord, Norway 2014 (K), Shale Gas ISRM, Wuhan China (K), 2015, TBM conference, Istanbul, Turkey (K) 2015, Underground Construction Conf. IoM3, Hong Kong, (K) 2015, South American Rock & Soil Mech. Cong, Buenos Aires (I), 2015. Geosafe, Xi’an, China (K) 2016, 2nd ISRM Conf. on Soft Rocks, Cartagena, Colombia (K) 2016, Int. Geotechnics Symposium and Int. Meeting of CSRME 14th Biennial National Congress, Hong Kong (K) 2016.ITA/WTC Bergen (I) 2017, GeomEast, Sustainable Civ. Eng. Egypt (K) 2017, ISRM Int. Conf. Cape Town (K) 2017, TBM-DIGS, Wuhan (K) 2017, ISRM Int. Conf. Tunis (K) 2018, ISRM Eurock, St. Petersburg (K) 2018, COBRAMSEG Salvador, Brazil (K) 2018, 5th Unconv. Geomech.Symp. Qingdao (K) 2018, CouFrac Wuhan (P) 2018. ISRM karst conference, Croatia, Omis (K) 2019, Bolivian Rock Mech. Symp. Cochabamba (K) 2019. ICGCMTU Mining, Malaysia 2021 (on-line K), 9th Asian Mining Cong. Kolkata, 2022 (on-line K), ISRM conference, Ohrid, Macedonia, 2022 (K) (in absentia/appendicitis!).
Coordinator of ISRM Working Party "Suggested
methods for the quantitative description of discontinuities
in rock masses". 1974 to 1980;
Adjunct Professor, Dept. of Mining, University of
Adjunct Professor, Dept. of Rock Mechanics, University
of Luleå, 1985-1989;
Visiting Professor, Sao Paulo University, 1997-
ISRM Committee on Rock Joints, 1988-1992;
ISRM Committee on Scale Effects in Rock Mechanics,
ISRM Committee on Failure Mechanisms
in Underground Openings, 1988-1990.
ISRM Committee on Underground Siting of Nuclear Power Plants UNPP, 2016-2022
Principal recent project
2022 - Expert panel member, coordinating discontinuum analyses, for analysis of collapse caused by multiple-excavation-interactions, Line 6 metro, São Paulo for Acciona. Pumped-hydro project feasibility for Zutari, South Africa. Rock mass characterization for Hatta Project, in hills outside Dubai, UAE. Stability and pre-grouting assessment at Haga metro station excavations in Gøteborg, Sweden. Review of tunnel designs for Webuild, for Sotra-Link, Bergen.
2021 - Review of Jerusalem motorway karstic cavern problems, for the contractor. Review of pre-grouting problems for one of the international contractors working on the Stockholm Bypass twin motorway tunnels. Review of hydraulic tunnel designs for the Rogun Dam project in Tajikistan, for Italian contractor Webuild.
2020 - Review of world’s largest oil storage facility cavern support designs comparing numerical modelling and empirical solutions in UAE. Review of machine hall cavern modelling for SNOWY 2.0 in Australia, for Webuild, and comparison with empirical solutions. Emergency dam design review for Brazilian tailings dam security. TBM prognosis for Follobanen four TBM using the contractor AGJ rock quality data. Expert witness reporting for Follobanen.
2020 - Major project reviews for UEA oil storage caverns, and for pumped storage caverns in Australia, in each case concerning rock mass characterization and numerical modelling for cavern support. Expert witness assistance for leaking rail tunnel in South Africa, and for TBM prognosis case in Norway.
2019 - Continuation of consultation to contractors concerning massive tunnel and cavern erosion damage at Ituanga HEP in Colombia, and to contractors in India concerning major tunnelling. Expert witness preparation and participation in court cases in Johannesburg and Miami concerning leaking tunnels. Rock engineering courses in Finland, Bolivia, Brazil.
2018 - Panel-of-expert work in leaking drill-and-blast and TBM tunnels in South Africa and Norway for owner and contractors, consultant to contractors concerning tunnel erosion damage at Ituanga HEP in Colombia, consultant to Caterpillar concerning rock cutting mechanisms, consultant to T & L in India concerning major tunnelling project. Rock engineering courses in Tunis, Zacatecas, Singapore, Kalgoorie, Qingdao and Shenyang.
2017 - Continued reporting and panel-of-expert work concerning a leaking metro tunnel in South Africa, with emphasis on EDZ effects due to no pre-grouting. Continued reporting concerning an NATM tunnel collapse in South America due to inadequate support. Studies for TBM claims. Rock engineering courses in Cartagena, San Carlos-Mexico, and Capetown. New cliff and mountain wall formula published.
2016 - Consultant to owners of Rogun hydropower project in Kajikistan concerning an independent opinion on additional bolt and anchor reinforcement for the powerhouse cavern. Advice to contractor in Bhutan concerning cavern collapse and measures to stabilize void. Consultant to Farab Engineering Co. as member of panel of experts in Sri Lanka concerning possible solutions for the excessively leaking Uma Oya TBM-driven headrace tunnel.
2015 - Consultant to contractors concerning a Brazilian NATM road tunnel collapse. Consultant to Dazeb Engineering Consultants concerning stability analyses for planned K2 dam, and to IWPC concerning unusual structural geology of planned Ahwaz dam. Consultant to contractor on stability measures for Ituango HEP rock caverns, Colombia. Expert witness on tunnel damage in insurance claim in South Africa.
2014 - Consultant to L&T, Chennai, India on large tunnel project. Consultant to Gautrain Management in Johannesburg, South Africa concerning rail tunnel pre-grouting. Consultant to POSIVA and SKB concerning in situ joint shear strength test methods for HLW repositories in Finland and Sweden. Consultant to Silinjärvi open-cast mine operators Yara Suomi in Finland, concerning in situ rock joint strengths.
2013 - Expert witness reporting for US lawyers concerning a headrace tunnel collapse in Latin-America, Consultant to gold mining company in Colombia concerning 100’s of kilometres of core logging Q-parameter statistics, Consultant to MTR in Hong Kong concerning four current metro projects. Rock engineering courses in China, Finland, India, Mexico, Canada.
2012 - Review of site investigation for large storage cavern in India, for Larsen & Toubro, Chennai. International consultant review of WIL SYP metro station cavern construction conditions, Hong Kong for MTR. Advice concerning alternative NMT tunnel support for mountain road tunnel in Kashmir. Advice concerning cross-Andean Alta Piura water transfer tunnel in N.Peru for Swiss Hydro and Logos. Rock engineering courses in Australia, Tehran, Hong Kong, Svalbard, Mexico, Brazil.
2011 - Blind-hole Gastau shaft drilling prognoses for SDI and Brasfond, Brazil, using QTBM model. Rockmass and core logging and VP interpretation for NMT design of 20m span tunnels for Planservi, for Rodoanel Norte, Brazil. International consultant review MTR Hong Kong station cavern.
2010 - Baihetan Dam site and underground characterization and property estimation for 16,000 MW project, for Norconsult and ECIDI East China Investigation and Design Institute and owner HydroChina. Panel of expert work for the 230 m high Karun IV double-curvature arch dam in Iran. Abutment stability measures for Deriner double-curvature 250 m arch dam in Turkey, for Stucky Consulting, Switzerland. TBM prognoses for Petrobras pipe-line Gastau Tunnel, for Shaft Consultoria in SE Brazil.
2009 - Consultant to Indian Northern Railways
concerning some possible alternative NMT-style tunnelling
strategies for 60 tunnels, and review of steep rock
slopes, and major bridge foundations along the Kashmir
J & K rail link currently under construction,
and facing many difficulties.
Extensive rock-exposure statistical Q-logging and
use of core and seismic data to enable Qtbm prognosis
modelling for open-gripper TBM, and for double-shield
TBM with push-off-liner where needed, for twin high-speed
rail tunnels of 7.9 and 9.6 km length, from Oslo
to Ski for Norwegian Rail Authority JBV.
Diverse tunnel and station-cavern project-design
reviews for Hong Kong MTR.
2008 - Consultant to Iranian Water Power
Authority concerning pressure tunnel lining modifications
at the 1,400 MW Gotvand Dam project, to the designer
BJVC at the 315 m high Bakhtiary Dam in the Zagros
Mountains of Iran recommending integrated site characterization
involving Q-logging, deformability, seismic velocity
and permeability, and to consultants Mahab Ghodds
concerning abutment stability at Karun IV dam.
2007 - 2008 - Consultant to CVA contractor/designer
consortium concerning interpretation of reasons
for fatal collapse at São Paulo Line 4 Metro
Pinheiros Station cavern in weathered gneiss, with
first official reporting to the authorities.
2004 - 2008 - Consultant to Jernbaneverket
concerning core characterization, pre-grouting,
permeability, seismic velocity and tunnel support
for the Jong-Asker and Sandvika-Lysaker high-speed
rail tunnels, Oslo, Norway.
2006 - 2007 - Consultant to Queiroz Galvão
in Chile, for 18 km long headrace tunnel at La Higuera
hydroelectric project. Advisor to Greater Vancouver Water District
for rock quality questions at the Seymour-Capilano
water treatment deep access shaft.
2004 - Consultant to Odebrecht for planned
trans-Andean TBM water transfer tunnel of 14km length
at depths of up to 2,300m, performing empirical
and contracting numerical distinct element and fracture
mechanics modelling of likely rock burst and rock
failure and deformation processes with in situ rock
stresses of at least 60 MPa..
2003 - Q-system based core characterization
and joint description for four 1000m deep boreholes
at SKB's Forsmark and Simpevarp candidate HLW nuclear
waste repository sites in Sweden, and related surface
outcrop characterization at both sites.
2001 - 2002 - Consultant to Bechtel-SAIC
(BSC) on rock joint description for modelling, and
for general rock mass characterization for the Yucca
Mountain HLW repository, USA. Think Tank member
2000 - Consultant to Morrisson Knudsen/TRW
on characterization of the Yucca Mountain high level
nuclear waste repository project in jointed tuff,
1997 - 1999 - Consultant to CBPO-Odebrecht
on the Itá UHE, Brazil concerning stress
fracturing problems in diversion and pressure tunnels
due to exceptionally high stress in massive basalt
1997 - 1998 - Consultant to Sinotech in Taiwan
concerning exceptional cavern support design of
the powerhouse in faulted sedimentary rocks in seismic
region, Mingtan Pumped Storage project.
1990-1996 -Project Manager of NGI's geotechnical
consultancy to UK Nirex Ltd. The NGI project included
geotechnical characterisation of some 10 km of drill
cores, numerical analysis and rock engineering design
of numerous caverns, and associated excavations,
and planning of the in situ testing for the Rock
Characterisation Facility at Sellafield.
1990-1991 - Project Manager for the 62 m
span Gjøvik Olympic cavern rock mechanics
design studies performed by NGI for consultants
Fortifikasjon A/S in Norway.