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A Pragmatic Approach To Development Of An Undergraduate Construction Curriculum In Trenchless Technology

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1996 Annual Conference


Washington, District of Columbia

Publication Date

June 23, 1996

Start Date

June 23, 1996

End Date

June 26, 1996



Page Count


Page Numbers

1.29.1 - 1.29.7



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Paper Authors

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Virendra K. Varma

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Mohammad Najafi

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 1221

A Pragmatic Approach to Development of an Undergraduate Construction Curriculum in Trenchless Technology

Virendra K. Varma, Mohammad Najafi Missouri Western State College

ABSTRACT: Although trenchless technology has become an economically viable alternative to open-cut construction, the schools of civil and construction engineering are generally lagging behind in providing instruction on trenchless technology to our undergraduate students. There is a lack of knowledge about the role of trenchless technology in dealing with our underground infrastructure problems, and a general unawareness among the design and construction professionals. The fundamentals of trenchless technology are multi- disciplinary in nature; hence the field of trenchless technology can be taught at the undergraduate level. This paper addresses a multi-disciplinary approach to development of undergraduate construction curriculum in trenchless technology with instruction spanning the fields of soil mechanics, hydraulics, construction specifications, contract administration, etc. The authors have found that building on the infrastructure of the existing construction curriculum, and making modifications to the curriculum as you go along, is the most practical approach to teaching the fast developing subject matter of trenchless technology.


The demand for improved quantity and quality of community services such as utilities and communications has placed an ever increasing burden on planning, engineering, installing, and maintaining these services. According to a recent study1, some 800,000 miles of corroded and leaking wastewater systems are causing environmental problems. It is estimated that approximately 200,000 miles of pipelines are in need of immediate repair or replacement. It is also estimated that approximately 3% of the existing systems are being added to this need annually.1 Trenchless technology techniques offer an alternative for these situations in many cases.2

Trenchless technology methods by definition include all methods of installing or rehabilitating underground utility systems with minimum disruption of the surface. Trenchless technology methods have inherent advantages over conventional dig-up and install, or dig-up and replace/repair methods. These advantages include:3

þ Trenchless technology methods minimize disturbance to the existing environment, traffic, or congested surface or under surface areas.

1996 ASEE Annual Conference Proceedings

Varma, V. K., & Najafi, M. (1996, June), A Pragmatic Approach To Development Of An Undergraduate Construction Curriculum In Trenchless Technology Paper presented at 1996 Annual Conference, Washington, District of Columbia. 10.18260/1-2--6243

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