Four Common Methods for Slope Support

Slope stability is a critical factor in various construction and engineering projects. When dealing with steep slopes or excavations, it is essential to implement effective slope support methods to ensure safety and prevent potential disasters such as landslides or slope failures. There are a variety of common slope support methods that need to be selected based on the soil conditions and support needs of the construction site. In this article, we will explore four common methods for slope support.

Method 1: Anchor Bolt Support

Anchor bolt support is widely used in slope stabilization projects. It involves the installation of steel bolts into the slope to reinforce the soil or rock mass. This method provides additional strength and stability to the slope. Anchor bolt support can be further divided into two categories: ordinary anchor bar support and self-drilling anchor bar support.


a) Ordinary Anchor Bolt Support:

Ordinary anchor bolt support is a traditional technique that employs steel bars or cables to reinforce the slope. The process begins by drilling holes into the slope at predetermined intervals. These holes are then filled with grout or cement, and steel bars or cables are inserted. The ends of the bars or cables are anchored into the stable rock or soil mass, creating a stable support system. The strength of the anchors depends on factors such as the diameter, length, and material of the bars or cables used.

b) Self-Drilling Anchor Bolt Support:

Self-drilling anchor bolt support is a more advanced and efficient method compared to ordinary anchor bolt support. It combines the drilling, grouting and anchoring processes into a single operation, eliminating the need for pre-drilling holes. Self-drilling anchor bolts consist of hollow steel anchor bars with a drill bit at the front end. As the anchor bar is drilled into the slope, it simultaneously removes the soil or rock debris. Once the desired depth is reached, grout or cement is injected through the hollow anchor bar to fill the annular space, providing additional support and stability.

Method 2: Retaining Wall Support

Retaining walls are commonly employed to support slopes and prevent soil movement. These walls are constructed perpendicular to the slope, providing a barrier that holds back the soil. Different types of retaining walls can be used based on the specific slope conditions and requirements.

a) Gravity Retaining Walls:

Gravity retaining walls rely on their weight and mass to resist the pressure exerted by the soil. These walls are typically made of concrete or stone and are designed with a slight backward inclination to enhance stability. Gravity retaining walls are suitable for low to moderate height slopes.

b) Cantilever Retaining Walls:

Cantilever retaining walls utilize a reinforced concrete structure that extends into the soil and consists of a base plate and a straight wall anchored to the base plate, which is maintained as a stable retaining wall primarily by the weight of the fill on the base plate. These walls have a thicker base and a thinner top, creating a cantilever effect that counteracts the soil pressure. Cantilever retaining walls are commonly used for medium to high height slopes.

c) Counterfort Retaining Wall:

Counterfort retaining wall refers to the retaining wall that connects the stand wall with the heel plate by adding a counterfort along the cantilever-type retaining stand wall at certain distance intervals. Generally reinforced concrete structure. Compared with other forms of retaining wall, counterfort retaining wall has the advantages of saving space, shortening the construction period, beautifying the urban environment, easier construction, etc. It is a commonly used form of retaining wall in the approach of urban highway project overpasses.

d) Anchored Retaining Walls:

Anchored retaining walls incorporate the use of anchor systems to provide additional support, consisting of reinforced concrete slabs and steel anchor bars. Anchor bars, similar to those used in anchor bolt support, are installed horizontally into the slope, and their ends are attached to the retaining wall. This method effectively resists the lateral forces acting on the wall and improves stability.


e) Sheet Pile Walls:

Sheet pile walls consist of interlocking steel or concrete sheets that are driven into the ground. They are particularly useful in areas with limited space and where excavation is not feasible. Sheet pile walls are commonly used for temporary slope stabilization.

Method 3: Shotcrete Support

Shotcrete support is a technique that involves the application of a pneumatically projected concrete mix onto the slope surface. The concrete mix is sprayed at high velocity, ensuring good adhesion to the slope and creating a strong and durable support layer. Shotcrete support offers several advantages, including rapid installation, flexibility in shaping the slope, and resistance to erosion. Shotcrete provides immediate support and can be reinforced with steel mesh or fibers for added strength. This method is particularly effective in stabilizing loose or weathered slopes.


Method 4: Plant Protection

Plant protection is an eco-friendly method of slope support that utilizes vegetation to enhance slope stability. Plant roots bind the soil particles together, reducing the risk of slope failure. Additionally, plants absorb water, reducing surface runoff and controlling soil moisture. Various plant species, such as grasses, shrubs, and trees, can be used for slope stabilization based on the slope gradient and local climate conditions. Plant protection is often used in conjunction with other slope support methods to enhance their effectiveness.



Slope support is crucial for ensuring the stability and safety of steep slopes. Each support method has its unique advantages and applications, allowing for effective stabilization in various soil and rock conditions. By understanding these methods, professionals can make informed decisions to ensure safety, durability, and success in slope support endeavors.
Sinorock is a professional self-drilling anchor bolt manufacturer and has years of experience in slope stability, foundation support, and underground engineering. If you have any questions in ground support, welcome contact us at

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