Stress Sensitivity

Published: June 21, 2018 | Last updated: July 5, 2023

What Does Stress Sensitivity Mean?

Stress sensitivity is a measure of the ability to detect or withstand physical stress. The term may be used in the context of measuring instruments or as part of a general assessment of underground infrastructure.

The strength and capabilities of such things as tunnels and walls are a matter of great interest in the field of trenchless technology.


Trenchlesspedia Explains Stress Sensitivity

In trenchless technology, there remains ambiguity. Three important aspects of a measuring instrument are consistency, accuracy and sensitivity. In this context, sensitivity is the instrument’s ability to measure very small changes. It could also be defined as the smallest change that an instrument can detect. On a millimeter ruler, for instance, the sensitivity would be 1mm.

A broader view of stress sensitivity as applied to underground infrastructures would be an assessment of how well a structure holds up to stress. Academics study such things as the relationship between permeability and stress or the impact of excavation on brittle rock.

Stress sensitivity in trenchless construction could refer to the capacity of a particular instrument to measure stress or the capability of an underground structure to withstand it.


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