Special Issue "Advances in Dam Engineering"

A special issue of Infrastructures (ISSN 2412-3811).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 January 2020).

Printed Edition Available!
A printed edition of this Special Issue is available here.

Special Issue Editors

Dr. M. Amin Hariri-Ardebili
Website
Guest Editor
Research Associate, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO 80309, USA;
Affiliated Researcher, University of Maryland College Park, MD, USA;
YP Vice Chair of Committee on Dam Safety, US Society of Dams, USA
Interests: advanced analysis of infrastructures; earthquake engineering; machine learning; coupled systems mechanics; uncertainty quantification
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Dr. Jerzy Salamon
Website
Guest Editor
Chair of Committee on Concrete Dams at USSD; US Bureau of Reclamation, Denver, Colorado, USA
Interests: concrete dams; appurtenant structures for dams; seismic analysis; finite element analysis; nonlinear models
Mr. Guido Mazzà
Website
Guest Editor
Chairman of ICOLD Technical Committee “Computational Aspects of Dam Analysis and Design”; Vice President of the Italian National Committee on Large Dams, Italy
Interests: safety and risk assessment of dams and appurtenant structures
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Prof. Dr. Hasan Tosun
Website
Guest Editor
President of Turkish Society on Dam Safety; Civil Engineering Department, Osmangazi University, Eskişehir, 26040, Turkey
Interests: dam safety; embankment dams; internal erosion
Dr. Bin Xu
Website
Guest Editor
Institute of Earthquake Engineering, Faculty of Infrastructure Engineering, Dalian University of Technology, No.2 Linggong Road, Dalian 116024, China
Interests: dynamic analysis of dams; rockfill constitutive models; numerical simulations

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The expansion of water resources is the key factor in the socio-economic development of all countries. Dams play a critical role in water storage, especially for areas with unequal rainfall and limited water availability. While the safety of the existing dams, the periodic re-evaluations, and life extension are the primary objectives in developed countries, the design and construction of new dams is the main concern in developing countries. The role of dam engineers has greatly changed over the past decades. Thanks to new technologies, the surveillance, monitoring, design and analysis tasks involved in this process have significantly improved.

In this Special Issue, we solicit high-quality original research articles focused on the state-of-the-art techniques and methods employed in the design, construction, and analysis of dams. We welcome both theoretical and application papers of high technical standard across various disciplines, thus facilitating an awareness of techniques and methods in one area that may be applicable to other areas. We seek high-quality submissions of original research articles as well as review articles on all aspects related to dam engineering that has the potential for practical application.

Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

  • Gravity, arch, RCC, CFRD, embankment, and rockfill dams;
  • New construction materials and mixture design;
  • Material behavior and constitutive models for concrete, soil, and rock;
  • Advanced design techniques with optimized geometry;
  • Recent case studies and reported dam failures (i.e., lessons learned);
  • Dam safety and security, risk-informed decision making, and failure modes;
  • Quantification of various hazard sources (e.g., earthquake, flood, aging);
  • Advanced numerical analysis techniques;
  • Validations and verifications of the existing analysis techniques;
  • Monitoring, surveillance, and field measurement methods; and
  • Advances in sustainable and resilient dams, as well as socio-economical aspects.

The Article Processing Charge (APC) is waived for well-prepared manuscripts submitted before 30 June 2019.

Dr. M. Amin Hariri-Ardebili
Dr. Jerzy Salamon
Mr. Guido Mazzà
Prof. Dr. Hasan Tosun
Dr. Bin Xu
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Infrastructures is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • dams
  • finite element
  • construction material
  • natural hazard
  • safety
  • risk
  • resilience
  • experimental test
  • model
  • validation
  • concrete
  • embankment
  • reservoir
  • dynamic
  • calibration

Published Papers (11 papers)

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Editorial

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Open AccessEditorial
Advances in Dam Engineering
Infrastructures 2020, 5(5), 39; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures5050039 - 29 Apr 2020
Abstract
The expansion of water resources is the key factor in the socio-economic development of all countries [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Dam Engineering) Printed Edition available
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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Progressive Failure Analysis of a Concrete Dam Anchored with Passive Rock Bolts
Infrastructures 2020, 5(3), 28; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures5030028 - 10 Mar 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
Passive rock bolts are commonly used to anchor concrete dams, and they may have a significant impact on stability-evaluations. However, these bolts are often omitted from dam safety analysis due to uncertainties regarding their condition and the size of displacements required in the [...] Read more.
Passive rock bolts are commonly used to anchor concrete dams, and they may have a significant impact on stability-evaluations. However, these bolts are often omitted from dam safety analysis due to uncertainties regarding their condition and the size of displacements required in the dam-rock interface to mobilize significant bearing forces in the passive rock bolts. This paper address the latter question by studying the failure process of a small concrete dam anchored with rock bolts. Failure simulations were performed with the increased density method in a finite element model consisting of a dam, the corresponding part of the rock and rock bolts. Two types of approaches are used to simulate the anchorage of the rock bolts; a method where the anchorage to the rock is simulated using a fixed boundary condition; and a method where the anchoring of the bolts are modelled using springs. Depending on the method of analysis, the rock bolts contribute with 40–75% of the load-carrying capacity of the dam. The rock bolts increase the load-bearing capacity of the dam, partly through anchorage forces, but also by keeping the contact surface between rock and concrete together and thereby increase the shear capacity of the interface. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Dam Engineering) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Instrumented Health Monitoring of an Earth Dam
Infrastructures 2020, 5(3), 26; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures5030026 - 03 Mar 2020
Cited by 2
Abstract
This work evaluates the stability of the Boostan earth dam by investigating its long-term performance and interpreting the measured data. To measure the dam response, several sensitive locations are instrumented. This process includes measuring various quantities such as pore water pressure, water level, [...] Read more.
This work evaluates the stability of the Boostan earth dam by investigating its long-term performance and interpreting the measured data. To measure the dam response, several sensitive locations are instrumented. This process includes measuring various quantities such as pore water pressure, water level, and internal stress ratios using inspection devices such as ordinary and Casagrande piezometers, and total pressure cells. The recorded data shows that the pore pressure is in good agreement with the initial (stable) design condition. The installed piezometers show that the drainage is efficient, and the water table in the body is adequate. The instrument also shows a reasonable horizontal stress in the dam body. Overall, the condition of the case study dam is assessed to be normal. The results of this case report can be used as a guide in similar dams for instrumented health monitoring. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Dam Engineering) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessArticle
Shedding Light on the Effect of Uncertainties in the Seismic Fragility Analysis of Existing Concrete Dams
Infrastructures 2020, 5(3), 22; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures5030022 - 25 Feb 2020
Cited by 2
Abstract
The seismic risk assessment of existing concrete gravity dams is of primary importance for our society because of the fundamental role of these infrastructures in the sustainability of a country. The seismic risk assessment of dams is a challenging task due to the [...] Read more.
The seismic risk assessment of existing concrete gravity dams is of primary importance for our society because of the fundamental role of these infrastructures in the sustainability of a country. The seismic risk assessment of dams is a challenging task due to the lack of case histories, such as gravity dams’ seismic collapses, which hinders the definition of limit states, thus making the application of any conventional safety assessment approach difficult. Numerical models are then fundamental to predict the seismic behaviour of the complex dam-soil-reservoir interacting system, even though uncertainties strongly affect the results. These uncertainties, mainly related to mechanical parameters and variability of the seismic motion, are among the reasons that, so far, prevented the performance-based earthquake engineering approach from being applied to concrete dams. This paper discusses the main issues behind the application of the performance-based earthquake engineering to existing concrete dams, with particular emphasis on the fragility analysis. After a critical review of the most relevant studies on this topic, the analysis of an Italian concrete gravity dam is presented to show the effect of epistemic uncertainties on the calculation of seismic fragility curves. Finally, practical conclusions are derived to guide professionals to the reduction of epistemic uncertainties, and to the definition of reliable numerical models. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Dam Engineering) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessArticle
Lessons Learned Regarding Cracking of a Concrete Arch Dam Due to Seasonal Temperature Variations
Infrastructures 2020, 5(2), 19; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures5020019 - 19 Feb 2020
Cited by 2
Abstract
Dams located in cold areas are subjected to large seasonal temperature variations and many concrete dams have cracked as a result. In the 14th International Commission on Large Dams (ICOLD) Benchmark Workshop, a case study was presented where contributors should predict the cracking [...] Read more.
Dams located in cold areas are subjected to large seasonal temperature variations and many concrete dams have cracked as a result. In the 14th International Commission on Large Dams (ICOLD) Benchmark Workshop, a case study was presented where contributors should predict the cracking and displacements due to seasonal variations. In this paper, the conclusions from this case study are presented. Overall, the results from the contributors are well in line with the observations that can be made on the dam and the measurements performed. This shows that using non-linear numerical models is a suitable tool to accurately predict cracking and estimate the displacements of cracked dams. This case study also highlighted important aspects that need special consideration in order to obtain realistic results that can be used to predict the crack pattern, these being: (1) the importance of performing transient thermal analyses based on robin boundary conditions; (2) the influence of contact formulation between the concrete dam and the foundation; and (3) the use of realistic non-linear material properties. The results and conclusions presented in this paper constitute one important step in achieving best practices to estimate dam safety and better understand the potential failure modes and ageing of concrete dams. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Dam Engineering) Printed Edition available
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Open AccessArticle
From Theory to Field Evidence: Observations on the Evolution of the Settlements of an Earthfill Dam, over Long Time Scales
Infrastructures 2019, 4(4), 65; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures4040065 - 23 Oct 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
Unprecedented flooding events put dams and downstream communities at risk, as evidenced by the recent cases of the Oroville and Whaley bridge dams. Empirical models may describe expected ‘normal’ dam behaviour, but they do not account for changes due to recurring extreme weather [...] Read more.
Unprecedented flooding events put dams and downstream communities at risk, as evidenced by the recent cases of the Oroville and Whaley bridge dams. Empirical models may describe expected ‘normal’ dam behaviour, but they do not account for changes due to recurring extreme weather events. Numerical modelling provides insights into this, but results are affected by the chosen material properties. Long-term field monitoring data can help with understanding the mechanical behaviour of earthfill dams and how this is affected by the environment over decades. We analyse the recorded settlements for one of the largest earthfill dams in Europe. We compare the evolution of these settlements to the reservoir level, rainfall, and the occurrence of earthquakes for a period of 31 years after first impoundment. We find that the clay core responds to the reservoir fluctuations with an increasing (from 0 to 6 months) time delay. This is the first time that a change in the behaviour of a central clay core dam, as observed from field data, is reported in the international literature. Seepage rates, as recorded within the drainage galleries, are directly affected by cumulative rainfall depths exceeding 67 mm per fortnight. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Modelling and Characterizing a Concrete Gravity Dam for Fragility Analysis
Infrastructures 2019, 4(4), 62; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures4040062 - 01 Oct 2019
Cited by 2
Abstract
Most gravity dams have been designed and built during the past century with methods of analysis that are now considered inadequate. In recent decades, knowledge of seismology, structural dynamics and earthquake engineering has greatly evolved, leading to the evaluation of existing dams to [...] Read more.
Most gravity dams have been designed and built during the past century with methods of analysis that are now considered inadequate. In recent decades, knowledge of seismology, structural dynamics and earthquake engineering has greatly evolved, leading to the evaluation of existing dams to ensure public safety. This study proposes a methodology for the proper modelling and characterisation of the uncertainties to assess the seismic vulnerability of a dam-type structure. This study also includes all the required analyses and verifications of the numerical model prior to performing a seismic fragility analysis and generating the corresponding fragility curves. The procedure presented herein also makes it possible to account for the uncertainties associated with the modelling parameters as well as the randomness in the seismic solicitation. The methodology was applied to a case study dam in Eastern Canada, whose vulnerability was assessed against seismic events with characteristics established by the current safety guidelines. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
On the Dynamic Capacity of Concrete Dams
Infrastructures 2019, 4(3), 57; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures4030057 - 31 Aug 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
The purpose of this joint contribution is to study the maximum dynamic load concrete dams can withstand. The so-called “dynamic capacity functions” for these infrastructures seems now technically and commercially feasible thanks to the modern finite element techniques, hardware capabilities, and positive experiences [...] Read more.
The purpose of this joint contribution is to study the maximum dynamic load concrete dams can withstand. The so-called “dynamic capacity functions” for these infrastructures seems now technically and commercially feasible thanks to the modern finite element techniques, hardware capabilities, and positive experiences collected so far. The key topics faced during the dynamic assessment of dams are also discussed using different point of view and examples, which include: the selection of dynamic parameters, the progressive level of detail for the numerical simulations, the implementation of nonlinear behaviors, and the concept of the service and collapse limit states. The approaches adopted by local institutions and engineers on the subject of dam capacity functions are discussed using the authors’ experiences, and an overview of time and resources is outlined to help decision makers. Three different concrete dam types (i.e., gravity, buttress, and arch) are used as case studies with different complexities. Finally, the paper is wrapped up with a list of suggestions for analysts, the procedure limitations, and future research needs. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Hydro-Thermo-Mechanical Analysis of an Existing Gravity Dam Undergoing Alkali–Silica Reaction
Infrastructures 2019, 4(3), 55; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures4030055 - 22 Aug 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
The alkali–silica reaction is a chemical phenomenon that, by inducing expansion and the formation of cracks in concrete, can have a severe impact on the safety and functioning of existing concrete dams. Starting from a phenomenological two-phase isotropic damage model describing the degradation [...] Read more.
The alkali–silica reaction is a chemical phenomenon that, by inducing expansion and the formation of cracks in concrete, can have a severe impact on the safety and functioning of existing concrete dams. Starting from a phenomenological two-phase isotropic damage model describing the degradation of concrete, the effects of alkali-silica reaction in an existing concrete gravity dam are evaluated and compared with real monitoring data. Considering the real temperature and humidity variations, the influence of both temperature and humidity are considered through two uncoupled diffusion analyses: a heat diffusion analysis and a moisture diffusion analysis. The numerical analyses performed with the two-phase damage model allow for prediction of the structural behaviour, both in terms of reaction extent and increase of crest displacements. The crest displacements are compared with the real monitoring data, where reasonably good agreement is obtained. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
A Probabilistic Approach to the Spatial Variability of Ground Properties in the Design of Urban Deep Excavation
Infrastructures 2019, 4(3), 51; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures4030051 - 12 Aug 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
Uncertainty in ground datasets often stems from spatial variability of soil parameters and changing groundwater regimes. In urban settings and where engineering ground interventions need to have minimum and well-anticipated ground movements, uncertainty in ground data leads to uncertain analysis, with substantial unwelcomed [...] Read more.
Uncertainty in ground datasets often stems from spatial variability of soil parameters and changing groundwater regimes. In urban settings and where engineering ground interventions need to have minimum and well-anticipated ground movements, uncertainty in ground data leads to uncertain analysis, with substantial unwelcomed economical and safety implications. A probabilistic random set finite element modelling (RSFEM) approach is used to revisit the stability and serviceability of a 27 m deep submerged soil nailed excavation built into a cemented soil profile, using a variable water level and soil shear strength. Variation of a suite of index parameters, including mobilized working loads and moments in facing and soil inclusion elements, as well as stability and serviceability of facing and the integrated support system, are derived and contrasted with field monitoring data and deterministic FE modelling outputs. The validated model is then deployed to test the viability of using independent hydraulic actions as stochastic variables as an alternative to dependent hydraulic actions and soil shear strength. The achieved results suggest that utilizing cohesion as a stochastic variable alongside the water level predicts system uncertainty reasonably well for both actions and material response; substituting the hydraulic gradient produces a conservative probability range for the action response only. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Probabilistic Identification of Seismic Response Mechanism in a Class of Similar Arch Dams
Infrastructures 2019, 4(3), 44; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures4030044 - 24 Jul 2019
Cited by 2
Abstract
Different numerical models have been proposed for seismic analysis of concrete dams by taking into account the nonlinear behavior of concrete and joints; interaction between the dam, foundation, and reservoir; and other seismic hazard considerations. Less focus, however, has been placed on the [...] Read more.
Different numerical models have been proposed for seismic analysis of concrete dams by taking into account the nonlinear behavior of concrete and joints; interaction between the dam, foundation, and reservoir; and other seismic hazard considerations. Less focus, however, has been placed on the real seismic performance of the dams and their relative correlation. This paper investigates the linear and nonlinear seismic performance of two similar high arch dams with relatively different response mechanisms. The response correlation is performed from statistical and probabilistic points of view. Similarities and differences are highlighted, and the best practice to compare the responses in a class of dams is presented. It is found that some demand parameters and seismic intensity measures can reduce the dispersion of the results and increase the correlation. In general, the dam geometry has a direct relation with the deformation and spatial distribution of potential damaged area. However, it is not related to the localized damage at the most critical location. Moreover, the real crack pattern (from nonlinear analysis) is more discrete compared to the continuous overstressed/overstrained regions (from linear analysis). Full article
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