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J. C. Dhiman B. Prabhakaran Rahul Khanna
General Manager Chief (Geotech) Asstt. Manager (Geo) Parbati Hydroelectric Project, Stage--III, NHPC Ltd., Sainj, Dist: Kullu, Himachal Pradesh-175 134
SYNOPSIS This paper explains the nature of cavity encountered and the procedure adopted for treatment of the cavity and improvement of ground condition during excavation of 7882m long head race tunnel of Parbati hydroelectric project, stage-III. The head race tunnel passes through rocks of Banjar & Larji formations comprising of low to medium grade metamorphics. These Himalayan rocks are highly fractured, folded, jointed and are traversed by several faults and thrusts. The unexpected occurrences of shear/crushed rock zones within metabasic/phyllites along with concentrated water inflows at chainage: 492m onwards in head race tunnel Face-02, resulting in continuous slush flow and seepage from crown and sidewalls of the tunnel has led to hindrance in progress of the tunneling work during June-2007. The treatment of such adverse conditions started with consolidation of the face by grouting, followed by fore-poling where several longitudinally grouted rock anchors of length 8-10m at spacing of 0.5m to 1.0m depending upon site conditions were installed along the periphery of the tunnel. However, the ground condition worsened leading to cavity formation and debris flow thus making the above measures ineffective. Therefore, such condition was treated with Pipe-roofing technique. Pipe-roofing involves drilling and installation of set of steel pipes along entire periphery of the tunnel into the loose media in slightly diverging positions followed by grouting the media through perforated casing pipes. Further tunneling was possible only after three sets of Pipe-roofing were undertaken to stabilize the area. The umbrella of Pipe roofing extended between chainage 492m to 541m. After adoption of pipe roofing technique, the tunnel has advanced further 260m and is progressing in class-III/IV rock mass. This case study elaborates the sequence of events that led to treatment of cavity in the shear zone that occurred in Face-02 of head race tunnel of Parbati hydroelectric project stage III by adopting pipe roofing technique.

INTRODUCTION The Parbati hydroelectric project, stage-III is located in the Lesser Himalayan zone in Kullu district of Himachal Pradesh on the river Sainj, a tributary of Beas river. The project involves construction of 43m high rock fill dam across river Sainj near Suind village. A 7882m long concrete lined head race tunnel on the left bank of the river conveys the water to an underground Power house located on the left bank of river Sainj near Behali village. The water from the powerhouse is discharged back into the Sainj river through 2713m long tail race tunnel upstream of Larji village. The project has an installed capacity of 520MW. Detailed field studies were undertaken during investigation stage by Himachal Pradesh State Electricity Board (HPSEB), then by Geological Survey of India (GSI) and subsequently by NHPC to facilitate geotechnical assessment of head race tunnel. It passes through Lesser Himalayan rocks of Banjar and Larji formations which are highly fractured, jointed, folded and are traversed by thrusts. The unexpected occurrences of shear/crushed rock zones within metabasic/phyllites along with concentrated water inflows at chainage: 500m onwards in head race tunnel Face-02, resulting in continuous slush flow and seepage from crown and sidewalls of the tunnel has led to hindrance in progress of the tunneling work during June-2007. This case study narrates, the sequence of events that led to treatment of cavity in the shear zone that occurred in Face-02 of head race tunnel of Parbati hydroelectric project stage III by adopting pipe roofing technique.

GENERAL LAYOUT OF THE PROJECT The project comprises of a 43m high rock fill dam with central clay-core and a cut-off wall The river diversion is done through two nos 391m and 440m long diversion cum spillway tunnels of 6.75m diameter. An orifice type spillway having width of 26.5m is located on the left bank. Two number of intake tunnels are located on the left bank to divert about 221.25m3/sec of discharge into the head race tunnel after passing through two number of Dufour type desilting chambers of 300m length including upstream and downstream transition portion having width of 12.2m and depth of 22.5m. Both the chambers are provided at their bottom with flushing tunnels of size 2.0m 2.2 m which combine together to a 3.0 3.0m D-shaped silt flushing tunnel so as to discharge silt laden water back into river Sainj. A 7882m long horse-shoe shaped head race tunnel having 7.25m finished diameter and slope of 1 in 179. Three number of construction adits at chainage 17m, 3974m and 7782m having length of 145m, 715m and 154m respectively are provided to facilitate excavation from six faces. A surge shaft of 13m finished diameter and 147.5m height is provided towards the downstream end of head race tunnel along with a D-shaped surge gallery of 6.4m diameter and 173m length having an upward slope of 1 in 150. Two numbers of pressure shafts each of 4.5m diameter and total length of 510m and 460m respectively takes off from the surge shaft bottom and runs horizontally upto length of 130m before becoming vertical by another 300m then again becomes horizontal and bifurcates into four penstocks of 3.0m diameter each. These penstocks run for another 40m horizontally before entering into the underground powerhouse to feed four units of 130MW each. The underground power house cavern is 123m long, 22m wide and 43.6m height. The water from the turbines is discharged through draft tubes into four short independent branch tail race tunnels of 4.0m diameter which after passing below downstream surge chamber merges together to form a single tail race tunnel of 8.1m diameter and 2713m length to discharge the water back into river Sainj. The entire layout of the project area is shown in Figure-1.0. Figure-1.0: General layout Plan of Parbati hydroelectric Project, Stage-III GEOLOGY AROUND PROJECT AREA The project area lies within the Lesser Himalayan zone exhibiting a complex geology where various rock formations have undergone extensive deformation. The area forms the part of Kullu Rampur belt which is separated from Central Himalayan rocks in the north by Main Central Thrust (MCT) and Siwalik rocks by Main boundary Fault (MBF) towards the south. Three distinct rock formations viz., (i) Jutogh, (iii) Banjar and (iii) Larji are present in this area and are separated from each other by regional thrusts known as Jutogh (Kullu) thrust and Banjar thrust. Regional geology around the project area is depicted comprehensively in Figure-2.0. The rocks of Jutogh formation are exposed towards the north of Sainj valley. These rocks have been assigned age between Precambrian to Silurian and are represented by carbonaceous slates, phyllites, schists with bands of augen gneiss and limestone. These are divided into Kamrada, Ghar and Khokhan members. The rocks of Banjar formation belonging to Devonian to Carboniferous age are extensively exposed in the Sainj and Banjar Valleys. These comprises of low to medium grade metamorphics such as slates, phyllites and chlorite schist interbedded with massive quartzite. Banjar formation rocks are divided into four lithological units known as Bandal, Bhallan & Green bed members and Manikaran quartzites. Larji formation comprises of sedimentary sequence of dolomite, limestones, quartzites and slates of Permian age. This formation occurs as a tectonic window bounded by Banjar thrust on all sides except in the west where it is concealed under the Jutogh thrust. The rocks of Larji formation have undergone extensive structural deformation as evidenced by occurrences of series of overturned folds and associated faults resulting in shearing and crushing of dolomites and quartzites. These rocks are lithologically divided into Aut, Hurla and Naraul members. Major components of Parbati project, stage-III including dam and part of head race tunnel falls in the metavolcanics with bands of chloritic schist/ phyllite belonging to Green bed member of Banjar formation. However, Powerhouse complex of the project along with part of head race tunnel and tail race tunnel lies within Aut member rocks of Larji formation.

Figure-2.0: Regional Geology around Parbati H.E. Project, Stage-III The rocks of Banjar formation are thrusted over the younger rocks of Larji formation along the Banjar thrust which prominently dissects the Garsa, Sainj and Banjar valleys. This thrust intercepts the head race tunnel around chainage: 4900m. Towards the north of the project area about 800m upstream of dam site, Manikaran quartzites are thrusted over the rocks of younger green bed member along a high angle reverse fault known as Manikaran thrust. The project lies within seismically active region where moderate to severe earthquakes occur. The area falls within Zone-V of the seismic zonation map of India. CAVITY FORMATION IN HEAD RACE TUNNEL Head Race Tunnel of Parbati hydroelectric project is under excavation from three construction adits out of which excavation in adit -1 is through Face-1 which is already completed and Face-02 which is under excavation. The rock type encountered throughout the entire span of the tunnel upto this face comprises mainly of metavolcanics with chlorite schist and schistose phyllite belonging to Green Bed member of Banjar formation. The strength of the rock mass is low to medium due to closely spaced joints and multiple shear seams running parallel to sub-parallel with respect to foliation joint (N080 -100/50-70o). The shear seams are mostly filled with wet to dry clay or crushed rock flour and varies in thickness from 2 millimeters to 12 centimeters. Table-1.0 describes the characteristics of major joint sets encountered in the excavated portion of the head race tunnel from Face-02. Table-1.0: Description of Major Joint sets encountered in Head Race Tunnel from Face-02 S.No Joint Orientation Spacing Persistence Aperture filling (mm) 1. N080-100 o/50-70o <60-200 6-7m Tight to sheared, (Foliation Joint) clay filled. 2. N350o-355 o /40o-60 o 200- 600 2-3 m Tight 3. 4. N010 o -040o/40-60o N280 o/50 o 200-600 400-600 3-4 m 4-6m Tight / sheared Crushed rock/clay Joint Condition Rough Undulatory to Smooth Planar Rough , Planar Rough to smooth, Planar Smooth Planer

During the month of June, 2007 the excavation from face -02 was progressing beyond Chainage 463 m, where moderately strong metavolcanics rock was encountered with bands of chlorite schist/schistose phyllite. No

groundwater seepage was observed at the face and rock was devoid of any major shear / clay seam. The rock was running under class-III and accordingly the supports were provided (Table-2.0). On 12th June 2007, after the blast of the face at Chainage 497m, the face at Chainage 500m showed very closely foliated weak schistose phyllite rock almost over the entire face with dip surfaces in metavolcanics just above the invert. 2-3 cm clay infilling along the foliation joint (N070-080/60-65) with 2-3 minor quartz veins was also observed. The foliation joints strike at an angle of 45 - 50 with respect to tunnel alignment (N220). The groundwater condition was dry. A contact zone between metavolcanics & phyllite was identified at the face. The rock mass falls to Class IV with the value of RMR (Rock Mass Rating) as 38. Accordingly, complete Class IV support of 4 m long rock anchors and shotcrete with wire-mesh in addition to lattice girder was installed from Chainage 498m upto the face with fore-poling suggested before next blast. On the early morning of 13th June, 2007, rock mass failure in the form of huge loose fall with chimney formation occurred. During the joint inspection, it was observed that the face was completely covered with muck which has spread upto 8 to 10m from the face into the tunnel in the form of slush (Photo-1.0). The slush material was composed of powdered phyllite and clay. The material was completely sheared and thus it was assumed that sheared contact must have existed beyond the face along which failure took place. Two lattice girders installed upto the face were completely damaged. Wire-mesh and shotcrete layer was detached and it was seen over hanging with the loose rock mass (Photo-2.0), no groundwater seepage was evident at that time on the face. As the approach to the face was totally blocked due to the accumulation of muck upto the crown and continuous outflow of slush material and falling of large rock pieces. However, by visual estimate the dimension of the cavity was assumed as 7m by 7m in crown and above right and left spring levels. As a stop-gap measure it was decided to remove the muck from the toe portion so as to make approach at the face in order to have a clear view of the cavity formation and start treatment work. However, during clearing of muck, fresh slide took place from the cavity from right crown. Blocks of metabasic came down under gravity along with sheared and crushed Phyllite. It was inferred from the intensity of slush-flow and quantity of the loose rockfall during the preceding days, that the dimension of the cavity must have increased. The cavity was formed due to sheared nature of the contact zone between metavolcanics and phyllites. The shear- zone comprised of intensely crushed phyllites traversed by several clay-seams. The shear zone was dipping at an angle of 65 towards N020 cutting across the foliation (Figure-3.0). The dry clay acted as a lubricant in promoting gravity sliding of the disintegrated blocks of metavolcanics over the smooth, planar footwall of phyllites along the steeply dipping sheared contact. Due to steep dip of the shear zone the vertical extent of the cavity was more than the lateral extent resulting in chimney formation. The rock cover in the zone of cavity formation is 250 m.

14.06.2007 Photo-1.0: Muck due to loose rockfall accumulated on the face-02 at Chainage: 500m

Photo-2.0: Detached wire mesh and hanging Lattice Girders at the face, Cavity formed in the crown is visible towards left spring and crown of head race tunnel at chainage: 498m.


Figure-3.0: Geological cross section showing area of Cavity Formation in head race tunnel


0-17 17-52 52-133 133-154 154-179 179-197 197-221 221-265 265-393 393-431

Chlorite Schist with Bands of Metavolcanic and Phyllites

Head Race Tunnel


431-463 463-497 497-500 500-526 Sheared /Crushed Phyllites and Chlorite Schist Phyllites Phyllites with Metavolcanic

Rock anchors + Shotcrete + wire-mesh Rock anchors + Shotcrete + wire-mesh Steel Ribs Rock anchors + Shotcrete + wire-mesh Steel Ribs Rock anchors + Shotcrete + wire-mesh Steel Ribs Rock anchors + Shotcrete + wire-mesh Lattice Girder Rock anchors + Shotcrete + wire-mesh Lattice Girder Rock anchors + Shotcrete + wire-mesh Lattice Girder Steel Ribs
(Pipe roofing undertaken between Ch:492m to 541m in three sets)


Table-2.0: Encountered Rock mass / support provided in head race tunnel in the excavation completed so far Foliation Structure Face No. Chainage Rock Type Support Provided Tunnel (m) Alignment III III IV III IV III IV III IV III IV III IV V IV III IV III IV III IV N 220 080-100/ 55-70 N 040 065-075/ 55-70

526-537 537-546 546-548 548-760 760-774 774-776 776-780

Phyllites and Schists

Lattice Girder Rock anchors + Shotcrete + wire-mesh Lattice Girder Rock anchors + Shotcrete + wire-mesh Lattice Girder Rock anchors + Shotcrete + wire-mesh Lattice Girder

METHODOLOGY ADOPTED FOR CAVITY TREATMENT Preparatory Work: The initial efforts undertaken from 20th June 2007 to 02nd August 2007 for treatment of the cavity formed due to unforeseen geological occurrence involved pushing the muck back into the cavity and plugging the face with gunny bags. This was followed by providing channel fore-poling in the crown and filling the cavity with concrete. Efforts were made to install steel ribs in the top heading and grouting the area for consolidation. The exercise was repeated three to four times in the above period so as to control the continuous falling of muck from the cavity as described below: From 20th June to 20th July the tunnel face was plugged with gunny bags. About 100 m 3 of muck was removed from right side for rib erection. 3 nos of ribs were erected from Chainage 500m onwards at 0.5m spacing, 12 nos of rock anchors were inserted for rib erection. Fresh slides were coming down after removal of muck from cavity therefore, muck removal was discontinued afterwards. Shotcrete was done for support of gunny bags and rock

in the face and crown.14 nos of 6m long pressure relief holes were drilled. 85 m 3 concrete was backfilled. This was followed by 1050 bags of cement grout in 7 holes. 10 m 3of backfill concrete was again placed. Fore poling with 9 nos of 36mm dia steel rods of length varying from 4.5m to 8.5m were inserted. The face was again packed with gunny bags and backfill concrete was tried in four nos. of 125mm diameter holes at 35 0650 angle drilled into the rock so as to reach the cavity portion. Around 15 m 3 concrete was injected in two holes. Rest of the holes got choked. Gunny bags at the face were removed to see the position of cavity, but nothing was visible and again the face was packed with gunny bags and concreting was re-started in the new drilled holes since 20 th July 2007. In this exercise more than 70 m3 of backfill concrete was poured into the cavity. From 20th July onwards efforts were made to pour concrete to fill the cavity through 10m length hole. The hole got choked continuously by loose muck activated through constant seepage. Around 23 m 3 backfill concrete was placed in the due course. On 24 th July the tunnel face was plugged by muck, steel plate and channels. Grouting was undertaken at the face using mie pump. The grout pressure varied from 2- 7 kg/cm2. Water: cement ratio was ranging from 3:1 to 0.4:1.Upto 1% accelerator was used for quick setting of grout cement. Total no. of 28 holes was grouted at the face. Total cement consumed was approx. 1419 bags. Shotcrete activity was also carried out simultaneously to prevent grout leakage and continuous seepage from crown and sides. Total quantity of shotcrete consumed was around 35 m3. 8-9 m long pressure relief holes were also drilled to channelize the flowing water. From 02nd August, the nature and extent of cavity formed due to occurrence of shear-zone was deciphered by undertaking 30m length core drilling (Photo-3) from face at Chainage: 494m upto 524m. In the initial 10.5 i.e Chainage: 504.5m, the hole was drilled in muck with traces of grout cement & concrete. Further, upto 18.5m i.e Chainage: 512.5m highly fractured phyllite/ chlorite schist was encountered with clay/shear seams. From Chainage: 512.5 m to 524m i.e. end of hole, closely foliated, jointed & fractured chlorite schist interbedded with phyllite with some minor shear seams was encountered. Shear seam/fracture zone of various thicknesses were encountered beyond Chainage: 504.5m. Core recovery varied from 3% to 40% in bed rock. RQD was nil. Thus, it was clear from the core logs that sheared/fractured rock zone certainly extends upto chainage 524m. From 9th August to 10th September, several options including Multidrifting, in association with grouting, concreting, rib erection with steel lagging etc were tried. However, the ribs installed showed deformation due to the load of fallen muck and the continuous outflow of slush and seepage from the cavity could not be controlled. Therefore, from 11th September, 2007, efforts were started to treat the cavity adopting pipe-roofing technique.


Photo-3.0: Core Drilling undertaken on tunnel face at chainage: 594m

Pipe Roofing Technique: The pipe roofing was started on 11th September, 2007 from face-02 of head race tunnel at chainage: 492m. Between chainage 492 to 541m, three sets of pipe roofing were undertaken to treat the cavity and stabilize the crown for further commencement of tunneling work. The treatment took about three months and the tunnel excavation was re-started after passing through the shear zone portion during end of December, 2007. The methodology adopted under pipe roofing technique in three sets is shown in Figure-4.0 and is also described below: Set-1: From RD: 492m onwards, 21m long holes were drilled using a Symmetrix drilling system by 98mm diameter sacrificial drill bits (Photo-4.0). The initial row of primary holes was spaced in alternate fashion at spacing of 60cm along the periphery of the tunnel. Later another row of secondary holes were drilled in-between the primary holes thus the spacing between the holes reduced to 30cm. After drilling of hole, casing pipes of high tensile strength having diameter 89mm and thickness 4mm was driven through the each hole. Alternate perforated pipes and solid pipes each of 3m length were connected to each other by threading system. The pipes were inclined 5 outward from the periphery. In the first set, total number of 58 pipes were drilled in crown and below left and right spring levels. Two pipes-one inlet pipe for grout injection (for entire length of hole) and other outlet pipe for air/grout overflow (1-2m in length) were inserted through each hole. The perforated pipes were then grouted in stages with single packer, using cement grout, starting with thin grout having water cement ratio from 1:1 to 0.4:1 at a pressure of 3-4 kg/cm2. The grouting was stopped at refusal of intake or upon pressure buildup of 10kg/cm 2.Total grout consumed in 58 no of holes was around 2041 bags. The entire system formed an umbrella ahead of face so that safe further excavation could be carried out. The grout was allowed to set for a day. Benching was started followed by erection of steel ribs at spacing of 0.5m.

Photo-4.0: Pipe roofing undertaken through Symmetrix drilling system Set-2: After completion of first set of pipe roofing, excavation work continued with heading and benching method. However, as the shear/crushed rock zone continued throughout the extent of pipe roofing undertaken so far, a second set of pipe roofing was undertaken from chainage: 509m keeping overlap of 4.0m between the two sets. In second addition, only 34 holes of 18m length with spacing of 30cm and inclination of 5 to 8 were drilled in crown portion only. Rest of the procedure remains same. Set-3: After completion of second set of pipe roofing a horizontal probe hole of 15m length was drilled on the tunnel face at chainage: 524m to ascertain expected rock conditions. It was inferred from drilling that thinly foliated schistose phyllite of weak strength was continuing further with multiple shear seams upto next 12-15m. Therefore, considering that weak rock conditions are anticipated further a third set of pipe roofing was also undertaken from RD: 524m onwards. An overlap of 3m was kept between 2nd and 3rd sets. In third addition, only 20 holes of 18m

length were drilled in crown portion at spacing of 30cm. Rest of the procedure remains same. In all the three sets of pipe-roofing overall 2177m running length of steel pipes were provided to construct an umbrella of pipes from chainage: 492m to 541m. The total cement consumption for grouting the shear zone and treatment of the cavity by pipe roofing was 56 metric tones. Figure-4.0: Cross section of Head race tunnel showing details of three sets of Pipe-Roofing undertaken. CONCLUSION: Pipe roofing technique adopted at Parbati Hydroelectric Project, stage-III proved to be an effective measure for treatment of cavity formation in underground tunneling work due to unforeseen geological conditions. This technique though specialized in nature is simple in terms of methodology and machinery used. It is also time and cost effective when compared with conventional methods. This case study suggests the fact that in comparison to conventional techniques of cavity treatment such as grouting multidrifting etc in poor ground conditions, the pipe roofing technique is more safe and time saving.