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EUROCK 2013, the ISRM European Regional Rock Mechanics Symposium

The European Rock Mechanics Symposium EUROCK 2013 was held at the Sofitel Wrocław Old Town Hotel in the city of Wrocław, POLAND, from 23 to 26 September. The Symposium was organized by the Polish Society for Rock Mechanics (The ISRM National Group POLAND) and the Institute of Geotechnics and Hydrotechnics of the Wrocław University of Technology with the main objective of providing a forum for engineers, researchers and students to meet, to integrate industry professionals and scientific research communities, to create opportunities to update and improve knowledge and to present the most recent contributions in the area of rock mechanics and rock engineering.

EUROCK 2013 was designated as the ISRM 2013 International Symposium during which the official ISRM meetings took place. The Board of the ISRM met on 21 September and the ISRM Council and the ISRM Commissions met on 22 September.

In addition, two short courses were held on the eve of the Symposium (September 21-22). These were a short course on In-Situ Rock Stress, which was given by O. Stephansson and A. Zang and a short course on Discontinuum Modelling in Rock Mechanics – From Micro to Macroscale, which was given by ITASCA International.

EUROCK 2013 was planned to focus on recent developments in the field of rock mechanics with an emphasis on the application of rock mechanics in the extraction of natural resources, in securing energy supplies and in protecting the environment that surrounds rock that is being subjected to engineering activities. To this end, six keynote lectures were presented by leading international experts. P. Bérest spoke on the behaviour of rock salt and the storage of hydrocarbons in salt caverns; the mechanisms of mining-induced dynamic phenomena that occur in rock masses was addressed by J. Dubiński; M.B. Dusseault gave a lecture on the geomechanical aspects of in-situ energy development; the lecture by J.A. Hudson was devoted to the risks that are associated with underground rock engineering; H. Konietzky talked about the reliable modelling of rocks and rock masses and the geological sequestration of carbon dioxide was the topic that was discussed by X. Li.

Additional highlights of EUROCK 2013 were the 2013 ISRM Franklin Lecture on the engineering aspects of geotechnical tunnel design by Dr. Andreas Goricki from Austria and the Rocha Medal Lecture by Dr. Matthew Pierce from Canada.

The Symposium was attended by 268 delegates from Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Macedonia, Netherlands, Norway, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, the Republic of Korea, the Republic of South Africa, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom and the USA, with the largest number of participants from Poland, China, Japan and France (in that order).

One-hundred-and-two of the 145 papers that were accepted for the Symposium were presented during 17 oral sessions that were organized in six blocks of three/two sessions running simultaneously. The remaining papers were presented during a poster session.

All of the papers that were accepted for EUROCK 2013, as well as keynote lectures and the 2013 ISRM Franklin Lecture, were included in the proceedings volume entitled “Rock Mechanics for Resources, Energy and Environment”. The volume was edited by M. Kwaśniewski and D. Łydżba and published by Taylor & Francis/Balkema, CRC Press in both hard-cover and CD-ROM formats.

The social programme of the Symposium included a welcome reception, a concert of chamber music at the ancient St. James and St. Vincent Church, a banquet and a sightseeing programme for accompanying persons.

The Symposium was followed by four field trips to the Rudna underground copper mine and the Polkowice-Sieroszowice underground salt mine in the Legnica-Głogów Copper District, the Sośnica-Makoszowy underground coal mine in the Upper Silesian Coal Basin and the Grabinex open-pit granite quarry in the town of Strzegom on September 24.

The EUROCK 2013 Outstanding Paper Award for Young Scientists and Engineers was awarded to Mr. Martin Entacher from the Montanuniversität Leoben in Leoben, Austria, for his paper “A new small-scale rock cutting test”.

Marek Kwaśniewski 
Polish Society for Rock Mechanics 

Dariusz Łydżba
Organizing Committee of EUROCK 2013