Officine Maccaferri


Flexible Support Systems for Rock Slopes


Our range of secured drapery systems offers a solution to all site conditions

Our engineers Jordi Coll and Roberto Majoral were at the 9th National Symposium on Unstable Slopes and Hillsides, to present our technical software MACRO 1 for the design of flexible support systems for rock slopes.

The 9th National Symposium on Unstable Slopes and Hillsides took place in Santander from June 27th-29th. The event was organized by the University of Cantabria, the International University Menendez and Pelayo (UIMP), the Polytechnic University of Catalunya (UPC) and the International Centre for Numerical Methods in Engineering (CIMNE) and is considered one of the most important conferences on unstable slopes in Spain.

We were delighted to take part in this independent and multidisciplinary forum, which encouraged discussion among experts working in this exciting field. Jordi Coll and Roberto Majoral, engineers of our Spanish subsidiary Bianchini Ingeniero, presented two papers on the use of our Software MACRO 1 for the design of flexible facing systems for rock slopes and the new international ISO standards regulating the use of meshes in the treatment of unstable slopes.

This was also an opportunity for us to share our experience in rockfall protection systems and natural hazard mitigation, which has seen us develop a wide range of “Mac.RO™ systems” and solutions to stabilize rock faces and unstable slopes.

During recent decades, welded steel mesh in conjunction with shotcrete has been the default solution for surface support of rock slopes, to form a rigid system. Today however, flexible structural support systems featuring meshes and anchors offer more cost-effective, better looking solutions that also offer technical advantages depending upon the type of site.

In these flexible systems, a system of high tensile strength steel meshes with integral steel wire cables are secured to the rock face using an array of anchors. Rocks detaching from the face are contained behind the mesh and loads are transferred back to the anchors, via the mesh.

The selection and design of the secured drapery mesh system has to consider both serviceability and ultimate design conditions.

Our wide variety of secured drapery systems offers a solution to all site conditions, from our DT mesh, with resistance to moderate loads, through the stiffer and stronger Steelgrid® and Steelgrid® HR to finally our HEA panels, the stiffest products within our MacRO™ Systems mesh range offering extreme strength at low strain.

Our technical software MACRO 1 enables us to design flexible support systems by means of iteration of the parameters (type of bolts, type of mesh and safety coefficients), so that a balance between the different elements is achieved and the most appropriate system and product type can be chosen.

The result is a secured drapery system that provides serviceability and respects the design conditions in accordance with Eurocode 7.

For more information on our MacRO™ Systems range, please contact us.

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