Gigantic boulder for hydrogeological works

Why gigantic boulder?

“Gigantic” might lead us to consider it an inefficient technology, because of issues related to transporting and moving. Actually, gigantic boulders are seen as a great raw material for design due to their ductility and good resistance. This material is easily found, especially in mountain areas, and has a great value of environmental sustainability. Furthermore, a gigantic boulders brickwork will be cheaper than an equivalent masonry made of concrete.

What are they for?

This material is often used for support measures, consolidation and fluvial engineering works. In these fields, the main use of gigantic boulders is as partition, even if now new possibilities are coming from the areas of fluvial consolidation or natural event protection, like avalanches and debris flow.

How to make a gigantic boulders masonry?

In order to build such a masonry several steps must be completed; first of all, a layer of foundation blocks needs to be laid, using rocks of greater dimension compared to the upper layer. Then, it’s necessary to proceed with the interposition of blocks and the levelling of the laying planes with fine-grained filling material, in order to maintain the work’s drainage capacity. During this stage it is import to trust the excavator operator, who must place the blocks maximizing contact points between different rocks shapes.


Fields of application:

Based on these considerations, gigantic boulders are particularly suited to the mountain and foothill areas; specifically, this typology of masonry lends itself well to torrential roads, slope issues and forest roads implementation.

  • River works:
    • Side walls/dry-stone wall;
    • Protection against erosion


  • Geotechnical structures:
    • Gravity retaining walls;
    • Defensive banks against debris flow and rockfall.


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