Bam Nuttall is delivering an £25M, 16,000m3 insitu concrete sea wall at Dawlish in Devon as part of Network Rails £80M Dawlish South West Rail Resilience Programme.
The new sea wall will protect a 360m long stretch of the Mainline into Devon and Cornwall, a vital infrastructure link for the region. The new sea wall project is logistically challenging with the site located between the railway and the sea on a stretch of coastline renown for storms and waves overtopping the sea wall.
The new sea wall was therefore designed to be installed using precast concrete elements backed up with insitu concrete fill. To undertake the construction works and maintain the operational railway – i.e. to allow trains to run whilst construction operations were being undertaken a series of strict temporary stability constraints were incorporated into the design.
These constraints required multiple insitu concrete pours to be undertaken, each requiring the previous pour to have achieved the required strength prior to more precast being installed and more pours being generated. To assist with the planning of the concrete pours Bam Nuttall worked in partnership with sensor equipment start-up Converge, funded by a grant from Innovate UK.
Sensors developed with Converge give accurate predictions of when concrete will reach its required strength, meaning Bam Nuttall can plan when it commence the installation of the next pour or the installation of the next section of pre-cast concrete. Converge develops sensors which digitise construction sites. It has worked on hundreds of projects, using its standard sensor. Here the sensors are placed between the reinforcement before concrete is poured.