Rockfall Protection, Retaining Structures, Soil Reinforcement and Erosion Control for Railways


Maccaferri manufactures, designs and supplies gabion retaining walls and Reno mattress erosion control systems for rivers and channels. The company also provides erosion protection solutions, as well as a wide range of geogrids for strengthened earthworks, soil reinforcement and slope stabilisation.

Recent additions also include rockfall protection and debris flow mitigation systems, as well as asphalt pavement reinforcement grids, textile and meshes.

Maccaferri offers in-depth technical and design support to provide real-world solutions for projects. The company's specialist support services help clients reduce project risks, costs and time with value-engineered, safe and effective solutions.

Avalanche, debris flows, and rockfall protection systems for railways

Maccaferri offers numerous solutions to mitigate risks from natural hazards.

The company offer a wide range of rockfall protection mesh types, from lighter hexagonal mesh for simple drapery, to Maccaferri's high-tensile strength mesh Steelgrid for demanding pinned drapery and surface stabilisation. These meshes are often used with soil nailing.Maccaferri also offers high-energy absorption (HEA) panels, ultra-strong steel cable panels, and ring nets for rock containment on cliff and rock faces.

The company's rockfall catch fences (rockfall barriers) are used to intercept falling rocks and prevent them from impacting rail users. They are available with energy absorption capacities from 100kJ to 8,500kJ. Maccaferri barriers offer the lowest deflection during impact. They can be installed closer to the track, making installation simpler and more cost-effective.

Debris flow barriers are also available to contain even small landslips and snow slides, which can impact timetables and rail safety.

Soil-nailing is an excellent solution for strengthening unstable slopes and railway embankments, while the company' MacMat R can be used for surface stabilisation. The steel-reinforced 3D geomat spans between nail-heads and limits erosion, and the integral geomat provides an ideal substrate for vegetation re-establishment.

Maccaferri's MacRO Studio Rockfall software allows engineers to design solutions for rockfall mitigation and surface stabilisation problems.

Geogrids for reinforced walls and soil slopes

Maccaferri geogrids are planted in soils to reinforce them, allowing them to stand at steeper angles and accommodate greater loads. The company supplies a wide range of geogrid soil reinforcement types and strengths to suit a variety of soil conditions. This maximises the opportunity to re-use site-won material as structural backfill, and create a more sustainable solution.

Maccaferri offers different facing types for vertical walls and soil slopes, and to suit the appearance required.

The company's Terramesh and Green Terramesh soil reinforcement systems have a gabion fascia and green vegetating fascia respectively. The geogrid is integrated with the fascia, and assembly components are factory fitted, increasing installation speed compared to other systems.

Paragrid, Paralink, Paraweb and MacGrid soil reinforcement geogrids have the best long-term design strength reduction factors on the market, a testament to their quality and 'tried and tested' performance.

These geosynthetic reinforcements are used within our MacRES vertical concrete panel walls system, which produces vertical, concrete-faced, reinforced soil structures ideal for urban areas or rail-flyovers.

Designers can use our MacSTARS software to design reinforced soil slopes and walls.

Flexible and durable gabion retaining walls for rail applications

Maccaferri gabion retaining structures have been used for earth retention purposes on a multitude of railway applications.

The gabions are long-lasting, simple-to-install, and have been certified by numerous authorities worldwide, including Brasil, France, Italy, South Africa and the UK. The structures are flexible and can accommodate differential settlement easily without being damaged; ideal for seismic areas or soft ground.

The company's range of gabion types include Strong Face units and even Cubiroc pre-filled gabions, which are ready to be placed into projects immediately. Cubiroc units are ideal for fast-moving rail projects, such as installing a retaining wall overnight.

Maccaferri gabion walls also have a lower carbon footprint than traditional concrete retaining walls.

Using the company's GawacWIN design software, engineers can quickly design gabion retaining walls.

Hydraulic works, erosion control and vegetation

Maccaferri offers erosion control solutions tailored to the erosion forces involved and the surface to be protected. The company also supplies Reno mattresses filled with stones for heavy hydraulic flows, MacMat R and MacMat non-degradable high-performance geomats (TRMs) for medium erosion forces, and Biomac, coir and natural fibre biodegradable geomats for light erosion control.

Engineers can quickly design hydraulic erosion protection for water courses using Maccaferri's MacRA software.

Basal platforms and reinforcement for rail embankments

The company's Paralink geosynthetic geogrid strengthens basal platforms against forces up to 1350kN/m.

Paralink geogrids absorb, spread, and dissipate applied loads vertically downwards into the ground, or into the piles. Furthermore, by enhancing the soil's ability to 'span' or 'arch', a high-strength geosynthetic can increase pile spacing.

Soil stabilisation for track-bed platforms

MacGrid EG geogrids can be used to stabilise soft ground, provide access over difficult areas, or reduce the thickness of aggregate layers in track-bed construction.

The geogrids interlock with granular layers, reinforcing them and improving the efficiency of track-beds.

Contact Details

Officine Maccaferri SpA - Global Headquarters
Via J.F. Kennedy 10
40069 Zola Predosa – Bologna
+39 051 6436000
Maccaferri Transportation Infrastructure

Available White Papers


Rockfall Protection and Snow Barriers 07 August 2017 With over 60 years' experience in rockfall protection systems and natural hazard mitigation, Maccaferri offers a wide range of systems to stabilise rock faces, soil slopes and snow masses, reducing risks to people, buildings and infrastructure.


Global Mining Solutions 01 May 2017 Founded in 1879, Maccaferri is a leader in innovative and sustainable solutions to overcome environmental, geotechnical and hydraulic erosion problems.


Hydraulic Works 01 May 2017 Maccaferri's specialist knowledge and comprehensive product range, we offer clients a graded, logical range of hydraulic erosion protection techniques from soil bioengineering solutions through to robust high-energy capacity structures.


Soil Stabilisation and Pavements 01 January 2017 Whether constructing a gravel forestry track over soft soil or resurfacging a multi-lane highway, Maccaferri has the technical knowledge and wide product range to provide solutions for the rigourous demands of today's roads.