AnchorTest Version 2.0 has arrived – June 2022

After 2 years of meticulous development and rigorous internal testing by the partnership of ground anchor specialist AnchorTest Ltd and the outstanding team of international geotechnical software developers hetGE LLC, the first major update to AnchorTest (Version 2) is here. Bringing the latest international ground anchor testing code, EN ISO 22477-5:2018 (Test Method 1), AnchorTest v2 has many new and cutting-edge features such as the use of “Artificial Intelligence” for the estimation of anchor pull-out resistance using creep rate measurements.

AnchorTest v2 is available for all corporate license holders as a free-of-charge update through Apple App Store.

Please visit for more information.

Also please ensure your volume is on and watch this short video:

AnchorTest for iPad

Dr Mothersille visits the headquarters of Glötzl in Rheinstetten, Germany – June 2022

SBMA Ltd’s associate Geoserve Global Ltd was engaged by Ingerop South Africa to provide an objective assessment of the progress made by Glötzl GmbH in relation to the manufacture of rock anchor load cells for the Hazelmere dam project. The proposed load cell technology will deliver the largest hydraulic electronic pressure transducer annular load cells ever installed on anchors, with capacities ranging from 10,000 kN to 20,000 kN. To expedite this assessment GGL’s representative, Dr Devon Mothersille visited the headquarters of Glötzl in Rheinstetten , Germany on 1st June 2022. Dr Mothersille was joined by Mr Veron Birbal (Veepro Industrial & Engineering, South Africa) and Mr Jean-Louis Rouvet (Giacintec, France), Mr Jean-Marc Basset (Glötzl, France) and the host Mr Joachim Schneider- Glötzl (CEO, Glötzl, GmbH).

Jean-Louis Rouvet, Devon Mothersille and Veron Birbal travel by train from Stuttgart to Rheinstetten
Glötzl headquarters in Rheinstetten, Germany
Hydraulic electronic pressure transducer annular load cells; 10No. distribution plates in the foreground and 4No. cells in the background

From left to right: Jean-Marc Basset, Devon Mothersille, Joachim Schneider Jean-Louis Rouvet and Veron Birbal

Dr Mothersille presents at Deep Foundations Institute’s IT$ Money Webinar – April 2022

The Deep Foundations Institute (DFI) promotes a webinar series, ‘IT$ Money’, which stands for Increased Testing Saves Money. In this series, DFI highlights, every other month, 3 case studies during a 30-minute presentation each, followed by another 30 minutes of Q&A.  The whole concept is that additional testing (whether foundation testing, soil investigations, or concept testing) can develop a cheaper execution plan, has a shorter execution schedule and reduces risk.

Dr Mothersille was invited to speak at this webinar and used the rock anchor investigation tests carried out during the construction of post-tensioned anchors at Hazelmere dam as the case study. Dr Mothersille explained that in his 30 plus years’ experience, Hazelmere dam stands out as one of the best examples showing how an asset owner’s commitment to a substantial anchor test programme resulted in significant benefits for the project in terms of reduction in anchor execution costs and geotechnical risk mitigation. 

The test programme involved installing and testing four sacrificial trial anchors comprising 61No., 15.7mm diameter prestressing stands with an overall length of approximately 40m. These trial anchors were installed in the stilling basin, and the fixed anchors targeted the founding stratum layers of the proposed production anchors. In addition, the specialist anchor contractor was required to fabricate and install a full-scale anchor through the non-overspill crest of the dam. This 80m long trial anchor was called the dress rehearsal anchor and provided an opportunity for the specialist anchor contractor could demonstrate the execution of a complete corrosion protected anchor system. Provision was made that in the event of poor performance of the dress rehearsal anchor, a replacement anchor could be installed adjacent to it. Fortunately, this was not required, and the dress rehearsal anchor satisfied the acceptance criteria stipulated in the specification. The data produced from the test programme was digitised, managed and analysed in real-time using the cloud-based software AnchorTestTM. This innovative tool proved invaluable by providing authorised parties access to the digitised performance data and convenient storage of records in the Cloud.

Dr Mothersille was joined by fellow speakers Patrick Ijnsen (Netherlands)  and Dustin Walkenhorst (Canada). Notable mentions are due to Gerald Verbeek (Host for the event) and Carol Planitzer (Administrative Assistant, DFI).

IT$ Money Webinar Speakers (left to right) Dustin Walkenhorst, Patrick Ijnsen and Devon Mothersille
Screenshot taken during the online Q&A session
61No. strand sacrificial trial anchor installed at Hazelmere dam, South Africa

SBMA works at the Maggoire Policlinico Hospital in Milan close to completion – March 2022

The Maggoire Policlinico Hospital in Milan is the first project in Italy that utilises removable anchor technology. SBMA Ltd, in collaboration with its certified tendon manufacturer DECA srl (CEO Mr Gianni Carnabuci), was awarded the contract to design and manufacture the special anchor tendons in September 2020. Since this time, the main contractor (SIS SCPA) and the specialist anchor contractor (Palingero) have worked through the challenges of the global pandemic to deliver an effective deep excavation support system. The system incorporates a total of 186 No. removable SBMAs that work in conjunction with secant piles to support the excavation that exceeds 10m in depth.  

A small number of removable SBMAs are scheduled for installation in one section of the site. In addition, the permanent floor slabs that form an integral part of the foundation structure are currently under construction. When this phase is complete, the process of tendon removable will begin. During a recent site visit, Senior site engineer Massimo Chiofalo (SIS SCPA) gave SBMA Ltd’s Managing Director Dr Mothersille a site tour. Enjoy the images.

Original hospital building located adjacent to the site
Dr Mothersille and Mr Massimo Chiofalo discuss tendon removal
Dr Mothersille and Mr Massimo Chiofalo standing next to the SBMA tendons awaiting installation
Removable SBMAs support deep excavation at the Maggoire Policlinico Hospital site
Panoramic view of the Maggoire Policlinico Hospital supported excavation

Forensic corrosion study completed at Hazelmere dam, South Africa – February 2022

The raising of Hazelmere Dam by an unprecedented 7m required technology never before seen in the KwaZulu natal region of South Africa. Extensive feasibility studies established that the optimum solution to facilitate the raising was to install 83 high capacity rock anchors through the 47m high concrete superstructure into the underlying rock. The anchors, installed in 355mm diameter boreholes, ranged in size from 49 to 91 strands (15.7mm diameter) and were up to 90m long. With test loads up to 19042kN, these are the highest capacity cyclically loaded post-tensioned anchors ever installed. In addition, ten of the anchors will be instrumented with the world’s highest capacity annular hydraulic pressure transducer load cells. These bespoke instruments will allow full remote monitoring technology, permitting authorised personnel to interrogate the anchor load throughout the design service life.

Circumstances associated with the works resulted in a four-year delay to the project. This raised concern that the anchor tendons allocated for load cell installation may have suffered adverse corrosion.

On behalf of Ingerop South Africa (ISA), lead anchor consultant Dr Mothersille (SBMALtd/Geoserve Global Ltd) engaged the services of corrosion specialists Intertek to assist with a forensic investigation that included physical inspection and assessment of the anchor tendons.   The detailed investigation involved using an illuminated x60 magnifying glass and digital endoscope to examine the surfaces of the steel tendons in situ. Back at Intertek’s laboratories in Manchester (UK), replica moulding samples of steel strand surfaces were coated with gold using a Polaron 500 Sputter Coating Unit and photographed with a Keyence VHX-2000 Digital Microscope. This allowed the creation of 3D surface reconstruction and detailed measurements of surface profiles. Additional testing included tendon metallography, chemical analysis, hardness testing and water analysis to establish a thorough assessment of the tendon condition. Enjoy the images from this visit to South Africa.

Part of ISA’s team in South Africa. From left to right; Mr Karabo Kgaphole (Resident Engineer, Hazelmere dam), Mr Neelesh  Daya (CEO, ISA, Mozambique, Kenya), Dr Devon Mothersille (Managing Director, GGL), Mr Duane Booyse (Technical Director, ISA) and Mr Shakendra Bhagwandin (Regional Head – Eastern Region)
Mr Adam Botha (Approved Professional Person, ISA) and Dr Devon Mothersille (GGL)
Dr Mothersille using a x60 illuminated magnifying glass to examine steel strand
From left to right; Mr Geoff Coates (Principal Engineer – Metallurgy, Intertek), Dr Devon Mothersille (GGL) and Karabo Kgaphole (Resident Engineer, Hazelmere dam)
Dr Mothersille uses an endoscope with readout on iPad to examine steel strand
Example 3D profile generated from replica samples taken on strand surface

SBMA works resume on the Maggiore Policlinico anchor contract in Milan, Italy – October 2021

Back in September 2020, SBMA Ltd in collaboration with its certified tendon manufacturer DECA srl, were awarded the contract to design, manufacture and partly supervise the construction of removable anchors which form an integral part of the foundation support system for the new Maggiore Policlinico Hospital in Milan, Italy.

Following a series of anchor trials and substantial progress with the foundation piling works, the adverse effects of the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in the temporary closure of the site. In September 2021 the project resumed and following a further series of anchor trials, production anchor works are now underway.

This project is of particular significance since it is the first time that SBMA removable anchors have been used in Italy and paves the way for more applications in the future.

SBMA Ltd wishes to take this opportunity to thank and acknowledge the professionalism and perseverance of the tendon manufacturer (DECA srl), the main contractor (SIS SCPA) and the specialist anchor contractor (Palingero) who through effective teamwork have successfully implemented this pioneering technology.

Enjoy some photographs recently taken on site.

Installation of SBMA removable  tendon
Homed tendon in preparation for end-of-casing grouting in coarse-grained soils
Extracted tendon elements (prestressing strand)

Geoserve Global Ltd winners of the Southern Enterprise Business Award 2021

We are delighted to announce that Geoserve Global Ltd (SBMA Ltd’s closely aligned collaborator) has won the UK SME Southern Enterprise Business Award 2021. Geoserve Global Ltd has now been afforded the title ‘Global Leaders in Ground Anchor & Soil Nail Systems Monitoring Solutions 2021‘. This is an accolade we are very proud of and it is a testament to the high standards of service Geoserve Global Ltd has delivered to its clients worldwide.

Geoserve Global Ltd nominated for the Southern Enterprize Awards – August 2021

Singe Bore Multiple Anchor Ltd’s closely aligned collaborator, Geoserve Global Ltd (GGL), is delighted to announce that it has been nominated for the Southern Enterprize Awards hosted by SME news. SME News is a quarterly digital publication aimed at those who own, run or assist in the running of small and medium-sized businesses within the UK. 

Despite the challenges that GGL have faced, and still face, due to the global pandemic it is confident that it will continue to adapt to provide the specialist consultancy services its clients require. GGL regard the nomination for the Southern Enterprize award as welcomed recognition for its efforts!  

Dr Mothersille appointed UK expert on Technical Committee for Geotechnical Monitoring – June 2021

On 25th June 2021, Dr Devon Mothersille attended his first meeting, via Microsoft TEAMS, of TC 182/WG2, the Technical Committee responsible for ISO 18674-8 (Geotechnical investigation and testing – Geotechnical monitoring by field instrumentation – Part 8: Measurement of forces: Load cells). Dr Mothersille has worked with load cells for over 35 years and will use this experience to provide positive input the excellent work already undertaken by the existing working group under the convenorship of Dr Walter Steiner (Senior Experte Geotechnik).  

Dr Mothersille visits the Eden Project and spots rock bolts! – May 2021

With the government’s systematic easing of lockdown restrictions many people are  visiting key tourist destinations within the UK. The Eden Project is an attraction in Cornwall, England, UK and has been on Dr Mothersille’s list of places to visit for many years. The project is located in a reclaimed china clay pit, located 5 km from the town of St Austell.

The complex is dominated by a series of huge enclosures consisting of adjoining domes, up to 55m high, that house thousands of plant species. The largest of the two domed structures simulates a rainforest environment (and is the largest indoor rainforest in the world) and the second, a Mediterranean environment. The attraction also has an outside botanical garden which is home to many plants and wildlife native to Cornwall and the UK in general.

The site required stabilization of the boundary quarry faces and tying down the foundation ring beam using double corrosion protected ground anchors. The stabilization of the quarry faces involved the installation of over 2,000 rock bolts and soil nails up to 11m long.

During a recent visit, Dr Mothersille spotted additional rock bolt installation works in the peripheral rock faces around the pit.

What started as a fascinating trip to photograph an extraordinary collection of plant life ended with an interesting view of active rock bolt installation works!

Eden Project overview
Rock stabilization works at Eden Project
Dr Mothersille stands on public footpath with rock stabilization works in the background