Development and validation of a software to determine the failure hydrograph of embankment dams based on the particular geo-mechanical configuration.

The current computer programs used to estimate the propagation of waves produced by dam failures and the flooded areas are coded with unrealistic hydrographs based on statistical models obtained with data from historical dam failures, without taking into account the particular characteristics of each dam.

The failure of rockfill dams is a complex phenomenon that embrace different mechanisms: non-linear through flows, erosion of the non-cohesive type material that form the downstream shoulder of the dam, failure of the impervious element, etc… In these kind of dams, the release of flows is mainly controlled by failure of the impervious element that can occur by erosion or structurally depending on its geo-mechanical characteristics.

Aware of this issue, the INCLAM Group planned this research project in order to get a module that could be integrated in GUAD-2D for the calculation of the hydrographs resulting from the failure of rockfill dams with internal core constructed with cohesive materials. The Dam Safety Research Group (SERPA), the Center for Hydrographic Studies of CEDEX and the International Center for Numerical Methods in Engineering (CIMNE) will also integrate the consortium.



This R&D project has been funded by: