ARMR, a new classification system for the rating of anisotropic rock masses

  • Charalampos SaroglouEmail author
  • Shengwen Qi
  • Songfeng Guo
  • Faquan Wu
Original Paper


The engineering behavior of rock masses is strongly dependent on anisotropy, which is present at different scales, from the microscale in the intact rock due to the alignment of rock crystals (inherent anisotropy) to the macroscale in rock masses with anisotropic rock structure, characterized by distinct bedding or schistosity planes. This paper presents a new rock mass classification system, Anisotropic Rock Mass Rating (ARMR), specifically developed for the classification of anisotropic rock masses. ARMR considers the following rating parameters: (a) anisotropy strength index, RC; (b) uniaxial compressive strength of intact rock; (c) degree of structure anisotropy; (d) corrected rock quality designation (RQD); (e) condition of anisotropy surfaces; and (f) groundwater conditions. Its use is illustrated and explained by application to specific case studies in anisotropic rock masses, and the advantages and limitations of the classification system are outlined. The strength of anisotropic rock masses is determined using the modified Hoek–Brown criterion (Saroglou and Tsiambaos, Int J Rock Mech Mining Sci 45:223–234, 2008), which is extended to rock masses with the use of ARMR.


Anisotropy Rock mass Classification Rating RMR 



Dr. Saroglou acknowledges Prof. Qi and the Institute of Geology and Geophysics at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, where he was invited as a Visiting Professor under the President’s International Fellowship Initiative (PIFI). The assistance of Mr. N. Bar, Civil Engineer at Gecko Geotechnics Pty Ltd. and Mr. A. Maldonado, MPh Eng at UWA, Mining School, Mr. A. Stavrou, Engineering Geologist and Mr. S. Pollak, Civil Engineer from Arup Group are acknowledged for providing data.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Geotechnical Engineering, School of Civil EngineeringNational Technical University of AthensAthensGreece
  2. 2.Key Laboratory of Engineering Geomechanics, Institute of Geology and GeophysicsChinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  3. 3.Shaoxing UniversityShaoxingChina

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