Engineering Geology & Hydrogeology
Engineering Geology is the science devoted to the investigation, study and solution of the engineering and environmental problems which may arise as the result of the interaction between geology and the works and human activities of man as well as to the prediction of and the development of measures for prevention or remediation of geological hazards (IAEG, 1992). Ground water hydrology may be defined as the science of the occurrence, distribution, and movement of water below the surface of the earth. Geohydrology has an identical connotation, and hydrogeology differs only by its greater emphasis on geology (Todd, 1963).
The Geotechnical Engineering identifies the complex of disciplines and techniques (Soil Mechanics,Rock Mechanics, Foundations, Retaining Structures, Slope Stability, Underground Constructions, Soil Dynamics, Geotechnical Investigations etc.) that has three original characters: the soil, that is the material on which, within which or with which the infrastructures are built; soil underground variability; the constructive aspect in a project, that sometimes it is the determining factor (Viggiani, 1999).
Hydraulics of Groundwater
Hydraulics of Groundwater is the discipline that covers the laws and mathematical equations that govern the flow and storage of groundwater within the aquifers, as well as the pollutants carried by them. The main goal of the groundwater hydrologist, water resources engineer, or planner, who deals with a groundwater system, or with a water resource system of which groundwater is a component, is the management of the groundwater system (Bear, 1979).
Geoenvironmental engineering is a branch of engineering which includes the expertise of various disciplines: geotechnical and environmental engineering, hydrogeology, chemistry, water engineering, biology, etc. The aim of this branch of engineering is to solve problems related to environmental management, site characterisations, environmental risk assessment, waste disposal, soil and groundwater remediation, and environmental rehabilitation.
Numerical analysis is a branch of applied mathematics that solves complex equations (eg. Differential equations) through algorithms performing finite decompositions normally feasible with a fixed degree of approximation. In the field of Geotechnical Engineering and Hydraulics of Groundwater the application of numerical methods allows, compared to analytical methods, to reconstruct models coming to reality leading to the optimization of the project while containing costs. Solving equations of filtration and consolidation in porous media; simulation of constitutive models of soils; calculating settlements, the stability of slopes and foundations; models that simulate the groundwater flow and transport phenomena in an aquifer, are just some examples of the application of numerical analysis.
The Finite Element Method is by far the most used, followed by the Finite Difference Discrete and from the elements.
Research and Development
Research and Development includes that part of an enterprise (men, equipment and financial resources), which is dedicated to the study of technological innovation to be used to improve existing services and to create new, or improve production processes.