Vital knowledge for designing projects 

In this track, you will gain essential knowledge and understanding of the earth’s shallow sub-surface and insights into its properties and behavior. Such knowledge is vital in designing projects ranging from the drilling of tunnels, 
preventing landslides, port and waterway designs as well as constructing foundations for buildings. You will learn to investigate and characterize the different soil and rock properties of the shallow sub-surface and use this information for design purposes and risk assessment. You will graduate as an engineer who can come up with clever ideas for solving difficult engineering problems. You may enroll in this track from within the MSc in Civil Engineering or Applied Earth Science. 

Study subject areas 

This MSc track is based on a core program and a relatively large number of elective courses. This gives you the option to collect a big amount of knowledge and develop yourself in a very wide perspective. The areas of development are subdivided into:

Engineering Geology

A good understanding of the properties of the sub-surface, their variability and their geological origin is essential in ground-related projects. In this area you will learn how to combine knowledge of geology with field and laboratory measurements using boreholes and geophysical methods as well as using statistical techniques to construct a 3D sub-surface model. 


Geomechanics focuses on the fundamental properties of the soil. You will learn how to develop experimental, mathematical and numerical models to predict processes in the sub-surface. These methods can be used for designing purposes and optimization of a project design. 

Geotechnical Engineering

This area covers topics such as foundation, tunnel, pipeline designs, safe excavation to extreme depths, improving the properties of the soil and the prevention of subsidence existing structures adjacent to sub-surface construction activities. Focus will be laid on how to guarantee safety and minimize problems in underground structures. 

Professional Practice

To guaranty a safe and ethical design, knowledge on both areas is required. This area focuses on how to design and think is such a way the design covers all safety procedures required as well as it covers most ethical aspects. How do you limit the damage on existing buildings when drilling a tunnel under the city of Amsterdam? How can you construct a highway on saturated ground that is sufficient robust to withstand the effects of subsidence? How will the construction of a reservoir affect the stability of the adjacent mountainside slopes? In the Master track Geo-Engineering, you will learn how to deal with such challenges and solve them.






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