'Schrobenhausener Tage' 2024: New horizons in specialist foundation engineering

Geotechnical solutions and the role of AI were the focus of this year's Bauer Schrobenhausener Tage

The panel discussion during the recent Bauer Spezialtiefbau ‘Schrobenhausener Tage’ lecture chaired by Florian Bauer (centre) with Marcus Daubner, Prof. Dr Christian Moormann, Richard Gutjahr and Frank Haehnig (left to right) Credit: Bauer Spezialtiefbau

The panel discussion during the recent Bauer Spezialtiefbau ‘Schrobenhausener Tage’ lecture chaired by Florian Bauer (centre) with Marcus Daubner, Prof. Dr Christian Moormann, Richard Gutjahr and Frank Haehnig (left to right) Credit: Bauer Spezialtiefbau

For more than 35 years, Bauer Spezialtiefbau has been hosting the ‘Schrobenhausener Tage' lecture series. In April it was time once again with the motto: Focus Construction Site – stay tuned to Geotechnical Solutions.

A total of roughly 300 guests attended from Germany and abroad, including participants from Japan who did not want to miss the event. They were all treated to a successful blend of fascinating presentations about construction projects in Germany, challenging international projects and the latest innovations in specialist foundation engineering. But that was far from all: another topic on the agenda was artificial intelligence. 

Frank Haehnig, CEO of Bauer Spezialtiefbau, welcomed the guests and then handed over to Florian Bauer, MD of Bauer Spezialtiefbau and moderator of the event, who said: "You will see that the latest developments in specialist foundation engineering are very exciting. It's not just our innovations and methods, but also the use of artificial intelligence that opens up countless opportunities and prospects for our sites."

From Germany...

The event kicked off with a lecture block addressing spectacular projects in Germany. Karsten Kegelbein, site manager for Bauer Spezialtiefbau in Hamburg, started off the series and presented a construction project in Helgoland. Surrounded by one-of-a-kind scenery there, Bauer implemented four different injection methods – far from a typical endeavour.

In the next lecture, Susanne Nefzger, head of sales Bavaria for the South region, and Daniel Junger, site manager for Bauer Spezialtiefbau, presented a project for flood protection in the Bavarian town of Feldolling. A spectacular project with (almost) everything that specialist foundation engineering has to offer.

Excavation pit monitoring during the CEFAM project in Cologne was addressed by Agnes Demharter, site manager at Bauer Spezialtiefbau, and project manager Andreas Hertenberger from the domestic business division.

The morning's lecture series was rounded off with an interesting guest presentation on Monitoring of Geotechnic Works – the basis for sustainable and intelligent Geotechnics by Prof. Dr Christian Moormann from the Institute of Geotechnical Engineering at Stuttgart University.

During the lunch break, participants were able, as usual, to explore the innovations in specialist foundation engineering through an exhibition at the stands for the Technical Services, Design and Digitalisation departments. Furthermore, in the exhibition area for the in-house exhibition of Bauer Maschinen, starting several days later, an impressive array of equipment was presented along with ample opportunity to engage in dialogue directly with experts in the field.

...to the entire world

Refreshed from their lunch break, the guests returned for the second thematic section of the event. This was entirely dedicated to international challenges. The first report was given by Shekhar Battacharjee, senior manager business development at Bauer Engineering India, who discussed a subway project in the Indian metropolis of Chennai.

Onur Askin, technical engineer at Bauer Spezialtiefbau, followed by presenting an impressive offshore project off the French Atlantic coast near Saint-Brieuc, as part of which Bauer installed 190 offshore piles for 62 wind turbine sites.

Finally, Keith Ryan, MD of Bauer International UAE, addressed the particular challenges involved in a construction project in Dubai for which the barrette foundations were implemented through an existing three-story basement level. 

Digitalisation and AI

The third and last thematic section of the event took a look at the future and digital challenges. Michael Jones, MD of International Business Development at Bauer Technologies, and Joachim Gaus, soil mixing expert in the Major Project Sales department, discussed the complex soil improvement measures that were carried out underwater in 2023 while working from a pontoon in Sweden.

Marcus Daubner, head of digitalisation, addressed the digital twin and presented specific practical examples.

Richard Gutjahr, freelance journalist, moderator and blogger, concluded with interesting insights about the topic Artificial intelligence – Hype or Change.

This was followed by a final panel session with Christian Moormann, Richard Gutjahr, Marcus Daubner and Frank Haehnig in which the opportunities and prospects for artificial intelligence in specialist foundation engineering were thoroughly discussed.

"We have a passion for progress and we are open to new ideas," emphasised Florian Bauer. "In specialist foundation engineering, great opportunities await us through the use of AI, which we are tackling together."