Definition - What does Thrust Plates mean?
Thrust plates, or blocks, are used for the process of installing pipes underground when using methods such as pipe jacking and pipe ramming. These methods are used in places where open excavation or surface disruption is to be avoided, a construction method known as trenchless technology.
These trenchless methods of installing pipes are usually non-guided and the pipe is directly installed with the help of jacking force provided by reaction against a thrust plate.
Trenchlesspedia explains Thrust Plates
Pipelines installed using these techniques require two pits, one at the entry point known as the (launching pit) and the other at the exit point (known as the reception shaft). Depending on the length and diameter of the casing, the dimensions of the launch pit for the jacking equipment and the thrust plate is designed.
The pipe is jacked into the ground from the launching pit hydraulically. The thrust plate is located at the rear of the jacking pit. As the pipe is moved forward by the jacking force, the thrust plate distributes the force to the soil at the rear, while providing a reaction against which the jacking takes place, helping the casing to move forward. The jacking pit, when well-supported, helps provide better thrust force and prevent collapse of the surrounding soil.