Canadian researchers are finding that steel-fiber-reinforced shotcrete (SFRS) performs better than plain shotcrete or mesh-reinforced shotcrete. Canadian applicators like it because it's easier to place than mesh-reinforced shotcrete. PLACING FIBER SHOTCRETE IS EASIER AND SAFER Fixing mesh to a tunnel wall is difficult, time consuming, costly, and sometimes hazardous. On an irregular tunnel surface, mesh is pinned back inside large depressions but it's draped over most small ones. Filling the voids behind the mesh in these draped-over areas takes extra shotcrete. In contrast, SFRS can follow the exact contours of the rock. Less material is required as a result. Shotcreting an irregular rock surface can require up to 40 percent more mesh-reinforced shotcrete than SFRS. EQUAL OR GREATER LOAD-CARRYING CAPACITY Canadian researchers compared the performance of plain shotcrete, mesh-reinforced shotcrete, and SFRS. For tunnel linings anchored with rock bolts on 4-foot centers, both SFRS and mesh-reinforced shotcrete carry much more load after first crack than plain shotcrete.