Centrul de Cercetare Ingineria Apelor Subterane
Groundwater Engineering Research Centre

Research projects

Project founded by: European Space Agency
Implementation Period: July 2013 - June 2015
Director: Prof. Ioan Bica
Website: http://www.ccias.ro/sirys/

The project aims at the assessment of groundwater and underground works-associated land subsidence phenomena in urban environments (taking Bucharest city as a case study). This objective can be achieved using a combined Interferometric-hydrogeological-geotechnical multi-disciplinary approach.

The main activities of this project are:

  • Assessment of the ground displacement in Bucharest using InSAR and in-situ measurements
  • Mathematical modeling of groundwater flow and soil consolidation processes
  • Identification of the land subsidence causes for the case study

SIRYS project outcomes can lead to:

  • Demonstration of the integrability of space-born sensing technology in civil engineering models
  • Technical recommendations for land, subsurface (for future groundwater/soil consolidation-affecting underground works) and groundwater use (abstraction, artificial recharge) for city planning
Period: 1 january 2013 - 31 december 2015
Director: dr. ing. Constantin Radu Gogu

Governmental agencies are considered to be the most significant data owners and providers in modern societies. The sheer volume and wealth of this data makes apparent the potential benefits of reusing, combining, and processing governmental data. Even though metadata (information about the data) is sometimes published, administrations typically express reluctance to making their data available, for various reasons, cultural, political, legal, institutional and technical. The governmental spatial information (also called geospatial data, georeferenced data or geodata) producers in Romania are no exception -with the additional situation that even metadata is not usually available.

The concept of open access to governmental data is a hot topic today in the world. It assumes that all data collected or generated by public sector bodies (excepting personal data and data protected under existing privacy protection or accessibility rules) is made publicly accessible in commonly-used, machine-readable formats and can be re-used for any purpose, commercial or non-commercial.

The main objective of the GEOIDEA.RO project proposal is to improve the scientific basis for open geodata model adoption in Romania. Is our believe that publishing government geodata in Romania over the Internet, under an open license and in a reusable format can strengthen citizen engagement and yield new innovative businesses, bringing substantial social and economic gains.

Period: 19 november 2012 - 18 november 2015
Director: dr. ing. Manole Stelian Serbulea

The project aims at monitoring a known landslide site using satellite InSAR measurements and, through comparison, to validate them, using the classical survey methods. The project is oriented towards filling the gap in this area of expertise at a national level and by providing an example of “know-how” and the economic and technical impact such a technique may have.

This project may become a starting point for the development of further monitoring techniques and projects, involving large areas or distances to be covered, proper to national importance projects such as highways, which are currently under development. The civil engineering activities imply a wide range of monitoring works to confirm the validity of the design. The application of the InSAR measurements in displacements assessment of landslides can be extrapolated, after validation and determining its limitations on a wider area of monitoring cases.

The application of satellite surveillance in the field of soil mechanics represents a niche research in Romania and, although several studies have been published worldwide, the results are still in discussion and are not a common practice.

The association between UTCB and ASRC represents a multidisciplinary effort combining the field of expertise in Soil Mechanics, Hydrogeology and InSAR data processing, the results of this project representing an increase in the level of fundamental research in both fields of research. The association will improve the relations between these two entities, creating the environment for the development of future research projects. Since in the project shall work a number of doctoral students and young researchers, the opportunity of creating a new generation of scientists worth to be mentioned.

Project POS CCE - Founded by: National Authority for Scientific Research. Implementation Period: august 2010 - august 2013

Sedimentary media (alluvial sediments, deltas, etc.) are usually very important aquifers due to their high permeability, storage capacity and surface water interaction. Exploitation of this type of aquifers is significant because, among other reasons, they are easily accessible. Generally, no complex pumping systems are required, and usually, the wells and boreholes required are between 10 and 100 m dept.

At the same time, the ease of access to these aquifers contributes to their high vulnerability. Therefore, to guarantee a high lifespan and proper use of these resources good hydrologic management is required. Proper management of these requires hydrogeological modelling.

Reliable management of the hydraulic resources in urban areas can be performed only by using modeling. These models allow conceptualisation and quantification of hydrogeological processes and can simulate several scenarios such as droughts, exploitation of resources, evolution of quality, behavior of pollutants in the media, interaction of underground works conditioned to the hydraulic and geomechanic behavior of the ground.

In order for these models to provide accurate results it is necessary that they correctly reproduce the hydrogeological processes. However, it is known that sedimentary media are extremely heterogeneous, which is a paradox because odels usually use very simplified elements which assume that homogeneity of large zones characterizes the medium.

It has been shown that it is possible to use representative homogeneous models if information about aquifer behavior related to water resources is provided (Meier et al. 1998). However, in situations where connectivity is essential, these models are completely inadequate to characterize pollution problems and their remediation (Zinn & Harvey, 2003; Wen & Gomez-Hernandez, 1996; Knudby & Carrera, 2005). Detailed modeling of these environments is very complex for two reasons: the first is related to environmental heterogeneity and the second lies in the fact that the tools to manage data (geological and hydrogeological) and their implementation in hydrogeological models are not yet adequately developed.

In order to construct a correct hydrogeological model that will reflect processes it is necessary: (1)to know as accurately as possible the genetic structure and the evolution of sedimentary environment, (2)to be able to extrapolate petrographic and hydraulic properties and (3)to develop tools to implement these properties in hydrogeological models.

Proiect PC7 - Founded by: European Union. Implementation Period: january 2011 - august 2014

Brownfield regeneration is essential for sustainable land management in European Member States. Major areas previously used for military, mining, industrial or commercial purposes are frequently beset by high levels of complex contamination. Regarded as being problematic, many have become brownfields, impeding the development of surrounding communities. Brownfields threaten scarce soil and water resources and cause environmental and health risks as well as incurring economic and social costs.

Many useful and innovative technologies for site clean-up exist as well as methods to support decision making processes, but they are only rarely applied using their entire potential. Sometimes the non-visibility of tools is the reason that problem owners, managers, local authorities and other stakeholders do not regenerate brownfields using the best available technology and decision support systems measure.

However, a large number of megasites can be sustainably revitalised if efficient technologies are applied, potential re-use options are assessed holistically and if relevant risks are quantified. The European research project timbre in the EU 7th Framework Programme aims to support end-users in overcoming existing barriers by developing and providing customised packages that are problem and target oriented with technologies, approaches and management tools for a megasit's reuse planning and remediation.

Timbre will endorse tailored megasite regeneration by providing updated information on state of the art technologies and tools. As a unique asset, Timbre will deliberately include the cultural and administrative characteristics and their regionally distinctive features.

The project will enhance integrated assessments of regeneration options for particular sites and facilitate contaminated sites portfolio management by setting the right priorities. Moreover, the provision of user needs via targeted training and dissemination courses is a cornerstone of the project.

Software developed for Technical University of Civil Engineering

Under the Romania-Bulgaria Cross-Border Cooperation Operational Programme (2007-2013) - Project "Danube Cross-border System for Earthquakes Alert" a software application is developed using GIS functions in order to visualize the probabilities of important buildings being in a certain damage state of. The near real-time software for a building-to-building approach targets the buildings that are considered important in the event of a major earthquake.

The geographical area of interest is the southern part of Romania, where each important building was assessed and recorded in a database.

In many countries studies of seismic losses and risk have been performed at the level of a part of city, a whole city, a region or even for the whole country. From the point of view of databases, the approach was statistical (in general considering the data for each census unit or other georeferenced geographical unit) or building by building. Even when considering individually each building in a specific area, a statistical approach is needed, and the buildings are classified according to their structural system which will lead, for each building class, to a similar seismic behavior and loss characteristics. Results of such studies indicate on maps the expected building damage for a specific earthquake scenario. Starting from building damage, the authors developed results and maps for earthquake losses, injured and dead persons, economic losses, etc.

The seismic input (seismic scenario) for seismic losses and risk studies may be for example: probabilistic seismic hazard, deterministic seismic scenarios, enforced seismic prescriptions, shake maps.

The most widely used methodology for evaluating the expected building damage is the one used by HAZUS, that uses the concepts of capacity spectrum and seismic demand. In other cases authors used hybrid methodologies or different methodologies such as empirical methods based on post-seismic inspection or expert opinion or vulnerability index methods.