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The purpose of such Workshops is to provide a critical examination of the computational methods and software used for dam analysis. Specific problems in concrete and embankment dams are formulated and proposed to participants, who are invited to solve the problems and provide their own solutions. All solutions are then comparatively evaluated during the workshop, and most appropriate computational approach for each specific problem can therefore be recommended.
Three problems were proposed for discussion during the Gennevilliers meeting:
Theme A, prepared by M. Meghella from ERSE (ENEA – Ricerca sul Sistema Elettrico, Italy), was devoted to the evaluation of initial stress-strain pattern in a thin shell-shaped arch dam, following the development of short and long-term thermal and rheological effects in concrete.
Participants were provided with the construction sequence along with physical-mechanical properties of the concrete and geometrical data of the dam. Results could be evaluated in the light of the actual crack pattern, as developed within the dam body. Four participants from Austria, Italy, the Netherlands and Spain prepared solutions to the problem.
Theme B was prepared by C. Marulanda from INGETEC (Colombia), and its subject was “Analysis of a concrete faced rockfill dam including concrete face loading and deformation”.
The design and development of CFRD dams, primarily based on empiricism, has resulted in recent incidents which have recalled that analytical methodologies to analyse the behaviour of this type of dams is not useless. The problem posed aimed at identifying the key physical mechanisms that should be included in a numerical analysis to adequately predict the behaviour of a CFRD, and participants were suggested to reproduce in a three dimensional model the cracking pattern observed on the upstream face of a high CFRD. Three participants from France, Greece and the Netherlands prepared their solutions to this problem, while Dr E. Frossard from France gave a lecture on the scales effects on the behaviour and safety of large rockfill dams.
The subject of the third Theme C was the “Stability of a dam abutment including seismic loading”, prepared by R.M. Gunn from Stucky (Switzerland). The problem statement consisted of the static and seismic stability assessment of a three-dimensional multi-facetted rock “wedge” of an arch dam abutment. Firstly, dam-rock interface forces were to be evaluated from a finite element model and then, abutment stability assessments were to be performed using empirical (Londe Method) and/or finite element techniques. Three participants from Austria, France and Russia gave answers to this problem, and Mrs A. Bouvard from France recalled the fundamentals of the Londe’s method in a special lecture.