Seepage behaviour through earth dams with zones of different filling materials
Keywords:earth dams, hydraulic conductivity, phreatic line, seepage analysis, Seep/w, Seep2d
Since more than one-third of dam failures have been attributed to uncontrolled seepage, it is of great importance to investigate the behaviour of this phenomenon in order to achieve the maximum degree of safety for such dams. The present work investigated the influence of the permeability coefficient of the different materials used in zoned earth dams on different seepage parameters. For the modelling and analysis processes, the Seep/w and Seep2D software were employed. The numerical results prove that the optimum relative hydraulic conductivity between the inner and transition shells is about 0.001, and it is better to use filling materials with less hydraulic conductivity in the upstream transition and outer shells than in the downstream ones. A good agreement was noted between the obtained results from Seep/w and those from Seep2D. Reducing the hydraulic conductivity of both the upstream and the downstream shells, or of the downstream shells only, causes the pore water pressure in the dam body to increase significantly, and causes a remarkable reduction in the seeped water quantity and velocity. A moderate reduction in the different seepage parameters is achieved by reducing the hydraulic conductivity of the upstream transition shell, and a small reduction is noticed by reducing the hydraulic conductivity of the upstream outer shell.
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Copyright (c) 2024 Mahmoud M Mostafa, Shen Zhenzhong
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