Calgary Geotechnical Society


Welcome to the 2017–2018 lecture series!

The regular lecture series is held at the Austrian Canadian Cultural Centre at 3112 11th Street NE, Calgary. (See map here).
There is parking available either at the ACC or on-street.
The talks are held either in the upstairs hall or downstairs – doors on the west side of the building.
Lectures are free to attend unless stated otherwise.

Date Tuesday October 24, 2017
EventOctober – Fall 2017 Cross Canada Lecture Tour (CCLT)
LocationAustrian Canadian Cultural Centre, 3112 - 11 Street NE, Calgary (Alpine Room)
Time 5:30 – 6:00 pm: Registration and Cash Bar
6:00 – 6:30 pm: Buffet Dinner
6:30 – 8:00 pm: Presentation
Speakers Jean-Marie Konrad, ing, Ph.D.
  Dr. Konrad is a registered civil engineer with a Master's degree from Université Laval and a Doctorate degree from the University of Alberta where he contributed to the development of frost heave mechanics. He worked in the private sector as a geotechnical engineer for SNC-Lavalin and James-Bay Hydro Electric Corporation, at the National Research Council with respect to the geotechnical aspects of the artificial drilling islands in the Beaufort Sea, development of interpretation techniques of in situ testing data in weak soils and academia at the University of Waterloo (Ontario) and Université Laval. From 1998 to 2008, he was the Chairholder of an NSERC industrial research chair on frost action in civil engineering structures. Presently he is professor of civil engineering at Université Laval and the Chairholder of an NSERC industrial research chair on the optimisation of the life-cycle of earth dams. Dr. Konrad is the author or co-author of over 150 technical papers. For the last twenty-five years, he has also been a consultant for various projects related to artificial freezing, permafrost engineering, dam construction and safety assessment.
Topic Advances in Dam Design
Abstract Embankment dam performance and lifespan are closely related to the hydric, thermal and mechanical behaviour of materials...
  used during its construction. The apparent simplicity of embankment dams hides complex and often poorly known behaviours resulting from thermo-hydro-mechanical coupling phenomena. Understanding the different behaviours as well as their interrelationships is of paramount importance to optimize the life cycle of these structures. Hydro-Québec Production obtained the necessary approvals to build a 1,550-MW hydroelectric complex on the Rivière Romaine, north of the municipality of Havre-Saint-Pierre on the north shore of the St. Lawrence. The complex will consist of four hydropower generating stations with average annual output of 8.0 TWh. Construction of the Romaine-2 development began in 2009. Romaine-2 was commissioned in 2014 and the Romaine-1 development was commissioned in 2015. Work on the Romaine-3 and Romaine-4 developments, which will be operational in 2017 and 2020, respectively is underway. Since 2009, the NSERC/HQ industrial research chair in Life Cycle Optimization for Embankment Dams contributed to the advancement of various aspects in dam design. Major developments for seepage induced erosion are presented. The use of centrifuge testing for predicting deformation of Romaine 2 are discussed. Rockfill properties are viewed from a fractal perspective.
Cost $50 per person, payment is by cash or cheque at the door only; pre-registration is required.
RSVP By email to or phone Remco Kleinlugtenbelt at 403-853-3702 by October 19, 2017.
Please include your company name, phone number and indicate any dietary restrictions.

Date Wednesday September 20, 2017
EventSeptember – Regular Series Lecture
LocationAustrian Canadian Cultural Centre, 3112 - 11 Street NE, Calgary (Main Hall)
Time 12:00 – 12:30 pm: Cash Bar and Light Snacks
12:30 – 1:30 pm: Presentation
Speakers Jasmin Raymond, Ph.D. , Institut National de la Recherche Scientifique (INRS)
  Interested in geothermal energy, Professor Jasmin Raymond is conducting research work on low to medium temperature resources, including heat pump systems. The main objective of his projects, done in collaboration with geothermal designers, operators and manufacturers, is to improve the efficiency and profitability of systems by providing scientific and technological innovations. Field testing and numerical modeling are the main activities he carries out.
Mr Raymond is a hydrogeologist and he teaches geothermal energy basics at Institut national de la recherche scientifique in Quebec City. He obtained his Ph.D. at Laval University and a B.Sc. at McGill University. During his young career, he received numerous prices such as a Banting Scholarship for his postdoctoral research. He currently holds a research chair from l'Institut nordique du Québec to investigate the geothermal potential of northern communities and mines in addition to be the coleader of an international research group on geothermal energy supported by UNESCO. Highly involved in the scientific community, he participates to a task group of the Canadian Standard Association on geothermal heat pumps and the geothermal advisory committee of Geoscience BC. He coauthored a report from the Geological Survey of Canada on the geothermal potential of the country and was awarded the Canadian Geotechnical Society Colloquium in order to complete a Canadian lecture tour during 2016-2017.
Topic Assessment of the subsurface thermal conductivity for geothermal applications
Abstract The construction of green buildings using geothermal energy requires geo-scientists and engineers to evaluate the thermal...
  state and properties of the ground. In situ assessment of the subsurface temperature and thermal conductivity is commonly performed to design the heating and cooling system of commercial buildings with ground-coupled heat pumps. Those two parameters have a high impact on the operating temperature of ground heat exchangers (GHEs), consequently affecting the length of boreholes needed to fulfill the energy needs and the savings provided by the system. The demand for such services has increased rapidly since the geothermal heat pump market in Canada grew by more than 35% from 2006 to 2009. A review of field methods used to measure the subsurface thermal conductivity in the scope of geothermal system design will be presented.
The most commonly used method for direct assessments is the thermal response test (TRT) fully developed in the 90's with mobile apparatus. The TRT consists of circulating heated water in a pilot GHE installed in a borehole, where temperature and flow rate are monitored. The transient temperature response is analyzed to evaluate the subsurface thermal conductivity. Heat injection can also be achieved with a heating cable inserted into the GHE to conduct a TRT without flowing water, the latter being affected by surface temperature variations. An apparatus with heating cable sections has recently been developed to keep a low power requirement, hence facilitating the test. Indirect methods are now emerging as alternatives to TRTs. Interpretation of geophysical well logs are a viable option to infer the subsurface thermal conductivity. The inverse modeling of a temperature profile measured in an exploration well can further help to assess the subsurface thermal conductivity, when knowing the terrestrial heat flow. In Canada, the terrestrial heat flow has been determined over 40% of the territory, restricting the interpretation of temperature profiles to specific regions. Laboratory measurements performed on samples collected in surface outcrops or drilled cores can finally be achieved. For example, thermal conductivity data have been synthesized through a thermostratigraphic assessment of the St. Lawrence Lowlands to evaluate the geothermal potential of this sedimentary basin. Geostatistical simulations were then carried out to map the spatial distribution of the subsurface thermal conductivity at the urban district scale to the north of Montreal. Such projects will be presented to highlight geothermal research trends relevant to geotechnicians involved in the building industry. tion.
RSVPNot Required