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Durability of Subsea Tunnels under the Coupled Action of Stress and Chloride Ions

1 and 2,3,*
Department of Civil Engineering, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin 264209, China
State Key Laboratory for Geomechanics & Deep Underground Engineering, School of Mechanics & Civil Engineering, China University of Mining & Technology, Xuzhou 221116, China
Jiangsu Collaborative Innovation Center for Building Energy Saving and Construction Technology, Xuzhou 221116, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Appl. Sci. 2019, 9(10), 1984;
Received: 23 February 2019 / Revised: 3 May 2019 / Accepted: 9 May 2019 / Published: 15 May 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Civil Engineering)
PDF [2258 KB, uploaded 15 May 2019]


The durability of subsea tunnels under the coupled action of stress and chloride ions was analyzed to estimate the service life and provide a theoretical foundation for durability design. The influence coefficient of the stress on chloride ion transmission at lower stress levels was discussed according to the material mechanics, and was verified by experimental data. A stress calculation model of a subsea tunnel’s lining section is proposed based on the plane-section assumption. Considering the space-time effect of the convection velocity, a partial differential equation was constructed to calculate the chloride ion transfer condition under the coupled action of stress-convection-diffusion. The numerical solution of the partial differential equation was solved and the sensitivity of the parameters was analyzed. The subsea tunnel’s time-varying reliability index was calculated following the Monte Carlo method, and was used to predict the service life. The results show that the chloride ion concentration calculated by considering the coupled action is larger and the reliability index is lower than calculated only considering diffusion. Our findings contribute to the conclusion that durability designs of subsea tunnels should consider the coupled action of stress-convection-diffusion. An effective method to improve the service life of a subsea tunnel is to reduce the water–binder ratio or increase the thickness of protective cover. View Full-Text
Keywords: subsea tunnels; durability; convection; diffusion; stress; carbonation subsea tunnels; durability; convection; diffusion; stress; carbonation

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Zhao, Q.; Lu, L. Durability of Subsea Tunnels under the Coupled Action of Stress and Chloride Ions. Appl. Sci. 2019, 9, 1984.

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