Maccaferri Tests Rockfall Barrier System
In October 2012, over 100 attendees from around the world gathered at the Fonzaso test center operated by Consorzio Trivento Rocciatori in Venice, Italy to witness the testing of Maccaferri’s 6,500 kJ rockfall barrier system. This demonstration involved dropping a 17.6 ton (35,200 pounds) block of concrete from a height of 38 meters (125 feet) into the rockfall fence. To put into perspective, this is comparable to the weight of a tractor trailer.
To further demonstrate the systems success, a second 2.2 ton (4,400 pounds) concrete block was dropped from the same height to show that the barrier system can sustain multiple rockfall events in the same location, and without failure. According to Giorgio Giacchetti, “It is important for us to test each barrier system to breaking point to understand the energy that is needed to take it to this point and also to know where the weak points are.”
Maccaferri will use this test as part of their research and development in building the highest ETAG approved barrier of 8,500 kJ. Continued analysis of the information collected during this demonstration will be performed, measuring shear and compression forces on various components during the test, as well as the deflection of the fence during each test. The data collected will be used to develop and test the proposed next step of an 8,500 kJ barrier system. The success of this demonstration has Maccaferri one step closer to the launch of such system.
Maccaferri has been a provider of innovative, sustainable products and solutions to the construction industry and built environment for over 130 years. In more than 100 countries worldwide, Maccaferri is renowned as the world leader in gabion retaining structures. Over the past 10 years, they have diversified significantly, offering engineered solutions in mining, reinforced soil structures, pavement reinforcement, rockfall protection, coastal protection, dewatering, tunneling systems, pre-cast and industrial flooring. Maccaferri strives to build mutually beneficial relationships with its clients through high quality service and solutions.