What is an excavation and what are its types?

Welcome to construction equipment, in this article we will talk about the excavation and its different types.

What is an excavation?

The excavation process can be defined as all those tasks of cutting and removal of soil regardless of the particularities of the surface to be treated, however the excavations can be differentiated by the degree of complexity, depth, type of soil and its degree of humidity.

Excavation is understood as the process of excavation and removal of volumes of earth or other material for the conformation of spaces where foundations, water tanks, concrete, masonry and sections corresponding to hydraulic or sanitary systems according to the project plans will be accommodated. is going to be done.

The choice of an excavator to perform a specific work of excavation is closely linked to the power of the equipment, listed below are some requirements of the equipment according to the type of excavation.

According to the depth:

Excavations of high depth: In this type of excavation, the processes that have a depth range of at least 5 meters and an indeterminate maximum are listed. The excavators used in this type of task must have a power at the wheel that exceeds 59kW. Some models of optimal equipment for deep excavations are: Caterpillar 320D Excavator, Caterpillar 320D LRR Excavator, John Deere 200 D LC, Caterpillar 320CL Excavator. All of them exceed 110 kW of power which makes them indispensable machines in deep excavation work.

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Excavation of shallow: They are works of removal of earth that do not reach the 5 meters of depth, for this class of work sometimes an excavator is selected that does not surpass the 59 kW what allows the optimization of resources as they are it: hours man employed, fuel, etc. However, it is possible to use equipment that exceeds this amount of power to accelerate the excavation process as required by the work.

Depending on the complexity, 3 types of excavation are known and they are: the ramp, massive and structural excavation.

Massive excavations: Are those tasks of removal of large amounts of earth or material in which excavators are used that exceed 59 kW these can obtain cutting yields exceeding 100 cubic meters per hour by minimizing the time of work compared with machines of minor powers. Examples of this type of excavation can be: The construction of subways in buildings, retaining walls, etc.

Some machines that can be considered suitable for the work of massive excavation are:

Excavator CAT 320 BL that provides a net power to the steering wheel of 96 kW.

Excavator John Deere 330 CLC that provides more than 175 kW of net power for the performance of the work.

Excavation of the structural type: Excavation work is included in which some longitudinal parameters established in the construction plans must be respected, compared to the massive excavation, the cutting yields are much lower by up to 50% (50 to 60 cubic meters per hour) in the excavation of the structural type the equipment used generally exceeds 56 kW of net power, but lower power excavators can be used as required.

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Excavation in ramp: It is considered the last excavation to be carried out during a work since it will be in charge of removing the access-exit ramp for the machinery and this must be planned from the beginning of the first excavation process. The equipment used may or may not exceed 59 kW of power and the choice of the machine to be used will depend on parameters such as the depth to be reached.

On the other hand there will be a classification of excavations according to the nature of the excavated soil or the degree of humidity of the same, for all cases should be considered not only the power of the excavator to be used, factors such as size, type must be integrated of service ladle, etc.

Other types of excavation:

  • Common excavation
  • Excavation in rock
  • Excavation carried out in semi-hard lands
  • Excavation with shoveling
  • Excavation carried out with depletion and embedding

Technical specifications that we must take into account when conducting an excavation:

  • The excavation will be carried out manually or with machines according to the type of soil
  • The excavation must be executed following the guidelines as they are; the dimensions, the dimensions, the levels and the slopes indicated in the plans of the project that will be carried out
  • The materials that emerge due to the excavation process must be placed temporarily aside, in this way it will not interfere in the works that are carried out in that sector where it is being excavated
  • When in the excavation process we are presented with a problem of too high water table, the pumping equipment must be provided
  • When we find a height greater than 2 m in an excavation, antiblets must be used to avoid possible landslides in the excavation walls.
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Methodology to follow to perform the exvations:

Common excavation:

This is applied on soft ground, when the depth of excavation does not exceed 2 meters. The excavation and excess materials are evicted manually without using machinery.

Excavation in semi-hard land:

This excavation can be done manually or using machinery, it is advisable to use machinery to save as much time as possible.

Excavation in rock:

In this type of excavation, a preliminary study of the soil will be necessary to determine its execution with machinery.

Excavation with shoveling:

This type of excavation occurs when the height of excavation is greater than 2 meters, this must be executed by traspoleo, that is, it consists in forming heights that are greater than 2 meters to dispose of the material excavated in 2 different times, because The maximum vertical reach of manual removal is 2 meters. When the material is granulated and excavation by shoveling is necessary, it is recommended to excavate with a backhoe.

Excavation with depletion and embedding:

When in an excavation the phreatic level of water is very high, pumping equipment must be provided to evacuate the water, this practice is generally called excavation with exhaustion.

It will be dug on one side of the excavation, where the suction of the pump will be placed.

To protect the walls of the excavation, they must be used to avoid possible landslides and provide all the necessary security for the workers and for the project in general.

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