Assessment of Ground-Borne Vibration Impact on Nearby Underground Facilities Induced by Ground Surface Excavation

Shiguang Wang, Songye Zhu, Pak Leung Yuen

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Hydraulic breakers are used widely in construction activities such as rock excavation, building demolition, and pavement crushing. High-level ground-borne vibrations generated by hydraulic breakers may adversely affect the surrounding environment and nearby underground facilities. Therefore, vibration impact assessment based on the estimation of vibration intensities on and below ground surface should be conducted before the commencement of any ground excavation work in foundation construction. However, existing empirical formulas are intended mainly for describing ground surface vibrations, and cannot accurately predict underground vibrations. This study quantified the vibration propagation characteristics and the corresponding vibration impact on underground facilities through systematic finite-element simulations of hydraulic breaker-induced ground waves for the first time. A new empirical formula is proposed to estimate the surface and underground vibration intensities, and its efficacy was verified on the basis of field measurement data. The proposed empirical formula enables the direct assessment of vibration impact on buried facilities. Safe separation distances and vibration monitoring limits can be derived to protect underground facilities against vibration-induced damage.

Original languageEnglish
Article number04021071
JournalJournal of Construction Engineering and Management
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2021


  • Construction-induced ground-borne vibrations
  • Ground excavation
  • Hydraulic breakers
  • Safe separation distances
  • Underground facilities
  • Vibration impact assessment
  • Vibration limits

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Industrial relations
  • Strategy and Management


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