GB8306 - Numerical Modelling for Rock Engineering


Examination arrangement

Examination arrangement: Work
Grade: Passed/Failed

Evaluation form Weighting Duration Examination aids Grade deviation
work 100/100 ALLE

Course content

The course is aiming to give students basic knowledge of numerical analysis for rock engineering. Several numerical methods will be introduced, such as FEM, DEM and FDM. The intention is that students will understand the fundamental theory and application of the numerical methods to rock engineering. Popular commercial codes like UDEC, Phase2 or FLAC3D will be used. The course is carried out mainly in guided self-study and a project report shall be submitted.

Learning outcome

KNOWLEDGE: The student will obtain knowledge in numerical modelling, utilising their knowledge in rock mechanics and rock engineering for numerically analysing stress, displacement, stability/instability condition for underground opening or rock slope.

SKILLS: The student will be able to use a selected program (Phase2, FLAC3D, or UDEC) for analysing their selected issues. The issue can be stability of an underground opening (tunnel, cavern, or mining) or a rock slope (open pit mine, road slope, or natural slope).

GENERAL COMPETENCE: The student will develop their capabilities in understanding the rock mechanic and rock engineering. The student will develop their competence in using a numerical tool to analysing the stress, displacement, and yeilded condition for evaluating the stability/instability of an opening or slope in rock.

Learning methods and activities

The course is offered every 2 years in the spring semester (spring of years with odd number 2021, 2023 ....). This is basically a self-study course. However, 2 lectures will be given: one is on continuous modeling and the other is on discontinuous modeling. Students will perform an analysis with a selected commercial code on a selected project and submit a report.

Compulsory assignments

  • Report

Further on evaluation

To pass the course a score of at least 70 percent is required.

Specific conditions

Exam registration requires that class registration is approved in the same semester. Compulsory activities from previous semester may be approved by the department.

Admission to a programme of study is required:
Engineering (PHIV)
Geology and Mineral Resources Engineering (PHGEOL)

Required previous knowledge

Requires admission to the PhD programme Engineering, specialization within Engineering Geology and Rock Mechanics, or approval from the person with course responsibility.

Course materials

1. Brady B.H.G. and Brown E.T. (1985) Rock mechanics for underground mining. Chapters 4 & 6.
2. Pande, G. N. Beer, G. Williams, J. R. (1990) Numerical methods in rock mechanics.
3. Evert Hoek, Carlos Carranza-Torres and Brent Corkum (2002) Hoek-Brown Failure Criterion – 2002 Edition.
4. Hoek, E. and Brown, E. T. (1997) Practical estimates of rock mass strength. Int. J. Rock Mech. Min. Scien., vol. 34, No. 8, pp 1165-1186.
5. FLAC User Manual, Theory and Background, Section 2:Constitutive Models: Theory and Implementation. 2.3 and 2.4.
6. UDEC User Manual, Theory and Background, Sections 1 and 2.
7. Desai C.E. (1977) Numerical Methods in Geotechnical Engineering, McGRAE-HILL, Chapters 1, 2 and 4.
8. Zienkiewicz O.C. and Taylor R.L. (1991) The Finite Element Method. 4th Edition, Chapter 7: Non-linear Problems.

More on the course



Version: 1
Credits:  7.5 SP
Study level: Doctoral degree level


Term no.: 1
Teaching semester:  SPRING 2021

No.of specialization hours: 12

Language of instruction: English

Location: Trondheim

Subject area(s)
  • Technological subjects
Contact information
Course coordinator:

Department with academic responsibility
Department of Geoscience and Petroleum



Examination arrangement: Work

Term Status code Evaluation form Weighting Examination aids Date Time Digital exam Room *
Spring ORD work 100/100 ALLE
Room Building Number of candidates
  • * The location (room) for a written examination is published 3 days before examination date. If more than one room is listed, you will find your room at Studentweb.

For more information regarding registration for examination and examination procedures, see "Innsida - Exams"

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