Soil Nails

Soil nailing is an efficient, effective and economical method of soil reinforcement using TITAN hollow bars. The TITAN hollow bar reinforcement system is installed into the slope face of in-situ ground, whether natural soil or an existing fill, stabilising such material. Soil nailing can be used to stabilise existing structures such as unstable slopes, embankments and retaining walls. The use of soil nails can be adopted for the stabilisation of slopes and embankments, for example rail projects, coastal environments and quarried cliffs.

The construction of new steep slopes for widening of infrastructure routes, new developments and new retaining walls, has seen an increase in the use of soil nailing for the ground stabilisation of these projects. This method of soil reinforcement can be used for both permanent and temporary applications.


This method of soil reinforcement can be used for both permanent and temporary applications and has been adopted by most of the UK infrastructure owners.

Soil nails involve the insertion of tensile elements, in this case a TITAN self drilled hollow bar into otherwise undisturbed soil or fill. To provide a reinforcing effect the nails must cross the potential slip planes within the soil mass. They are installed typically at a declination of 10° to 20° to the horizontal to aid the grouting process. They are essentially passive elements and do not normally generate any restoring force until there are movements within the soil mass itself, but some pre-loading may be generated during the construction process

Corrosion Protection

Steel, when left unprotected in the atmosphere, will quickly form a brown oxide (rust) on its surface. This will continue to grow until scales flake from the surface unless some external means to prevent it is provided.

Ischebeck Titans soil nail system complies with EN 14490. In cases where certain ground conditions can be deemed aggressive, bars would normally have a surface coating, this would be either a galvanised coating, or an epoxy coating, or in some cases INOX (stainless steel).

However, the orientation of the thread on Ischebeck Titan bars is coarse, widely spaced and has a groove taken out of the crown, which induces controlled cracking of the grout along the length of the bar. Corrosion is likely to occur initially where the bar intersects a crack. Therefore, the smaller the crack width, the lower the risk of corrosion.

British Standard guidelines (BS8081) propose that crack widths of <0.1mm are acceptable in a cementitious protective barrier. Also, BS8081 recommended that further research be carried out to determine the use of crack width limitation as a form of corrosion protection.

Tests have shown that the uniquely manufactured Titan bar and its thread form will induce crack widths to less than the standard suggests. That research has been carried out in the form of shear friction tests, in conjunction with crack width measurements, and the results have shown that the frequency of cracking within a grout body can be controlled to such an extent that the crack widths stay well below the permitted 0.1mm. Therefore, in some cases an engineer would not need to design a soil nail application with a surface coating for corrosion protection, eliminating further cost[s]

TITAN Benefits

  • Installation could be carried out using small, lightweight equipment
  • Suitable for most soil types and ground conditions
  • Low structural deformations without prestressing
  • Can be installed in confined spaces
  • Low noise and reduced vibration during installation
  • Fully complies with EN14490

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