Вы находитесь на странице: 1из 800

TARIQ. 2008.

DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-1


Ch-1: Introduction
Chapter - 1
INTRODUCTION
1.1 GENERAL
Dam: Damis a barrier built across a river to hold back river water for safe retention and
storage of water or control the water flow. Dams allow to divert the river flow into a pipeline,
a canal or channel (Fig 1.1). Dams results in substantially raising water levels in the river
over a large area, thus create a storage space. Dams may be of temporary or permanent
nature. Dams may be built by constructing an embankment across the river at some suitable
location. Natural processes as landslide and rock falling into the river may obstruct the river
flows for some time and create a dam like condition. The earthquake of 2005 resulted in a
debris embankment of more than 200 m width and 70 m height across Karli/Tang Nullah near
Hattian Balla in AJ K (Fig. 1.2); and after ascertaining the stability of the debris fill the water
impoundment is being converted into a tourist point. However dams are built by humans to
obtain some economic benefits. The water body created behind a constructed embankment or
dam is called a man made lake or reservoir. Wildlife (Beaver) may also create ponds or small
dams for their habitat purposes.

Figure 1.1a: Water reservoir created by Tarbela Dam.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-2
Ch-1: Introduction

Figure 1.1b: Tarbela Dam aerial view (Source: Earth-Google).

Length of Lake = 2000 Mtr
Average Wi dth = 350 Mtr
Average Depth = 50 Mtr
X-SECTION
KARLI NULLAH LAKE
2.2 KM
202 189 171 149 137 122 110 95 77 57
44
100 M
100 M
100 M
100 M
100 M
100 M
100 M
100 M
100 M
100 M
100 M
BED OF NULLAH
150 M
60 m
4
INLET
DISCHARGE
30
Figure 1.2: Natural dam across Kalri Nullah AJ K formed by land slide due to earthquake.
Reservoir: Reservoir is defined the as a man-made lake or fresh water body created or
enlarged by the building of embankment, dams, barriers, or excavation and on which man
exerts major control over the storage and use of the water (Golze 1977, P-619). The
embankment may be constructed on one or more or all four sides of the reservoir.
Need:
(1) River supply usually does not match with the demand at all times/months. Dams
storage reservoir is created to match releases with the water demand.
(2) Dam created to substantially raise water level and thus working head for
hydropower production or to direct water into off taking canals (e.g. irrigation
canal, feeder to on off-channel dam).
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-3
Ch-1: Introduction
Purposes
Dams and reservoirs are built to raise water level for storage and safe retention of
large quantity of water. Water is subsequently released to achieve various purposes. Dams
may be constructed to meet one or more purposes as (USBR 2001, P:1-3):
1. Irrigation
2. Hydropower development
3. Domestic, municipal, industrial water supply (Hub dam, Simly dam)
4. Stock watering
5. Flood control
6. Recreation (picnic, camping, fishing, swimming, kayaking, white water
rafting)
7. Fish and wildlife protection and development, and improvement of river
ecology
8. River water quality / pollution control and management
9. Stream flow regulation for various purposes
10. Navigation
Multipurpose dams:
Most dams are multi-purpose, serving more than one purpose. Mostly these additional
purposes are achieved as byproduct outcome, e.g., hydropower, recreation, etc. For
multipurpose dams, the storage is allocated and prioritized for different purposes and cost
allocation (Fig. 1.4).
1.2 DAM AND RESERVOIR DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY
Reservoir design can be considered in a broader sense. It is really selected with such
improvements or remedial work as may be considered necessary to assure safe and
satisfactory performance of its intended purpose. Development of a reservoir must assure
structural integrity and adequacy of the reservoirs. The reservoir site is evaluated in terms of
geology, rim stability against slides, water tightness and water holding capability, seismicity,
bank storage, evaporation, sedimentation, land use and mineral resources, right-of-way and
property ownership, relocation of the populace, utilities, and transportation facilities,
historical-cultural and religious monuments etc.
The water stored behind the dam exerts a lrge water pressure on the dam. A dam must be able
to withstand such high pressures. In addition dam must be safe against failure due to
overtopping, foundation thrust failures, destruction of dam body due to internal erosion and
material failure, foundation uplift, and retain storage contents practically no loss of water
due to seepage.

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-4
Ch-1: Introduction




















Figure 1.3 : Upper Reservoir of Taum Sauk 450 MW pumped power plant (Reynolds
County, Missouri, on the East Fork of the Black River) made of ridge top 6562 ft long
84 ft high CFRD dike with 10 ft parapet wall. The reservoir dike constructed in
1960s failed on Dec 14, 2005 due to internal leakage and slope failure. Plant
remained out of use as of J an 2007. [http://www.ferc.gov/industries/
hydropower/safety/projects/taum-sauk/consult-rpt/sec-2-summ.pdf].
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-5
Ch-1: Introduction
















Natural or man-made water bodies, albeit large ones, has high aesthetical appeal and
thus attract huge number of visitors for recreation. The reservoir design must include
provisions of recreation facilities as parking area, picnic area, camping area, hiking and
biking trails, nature walk trails, horse trails, rock climbing, enjoying surrounding scenery,
water sports, motel, public services, restrooms, emergency services, indoor shelter areas,
project guided tours, etc. These should be evaluated in terms of need vs luxury and security
concerns for the structure and public.
Reservoir area requires clearing of brush/shrubs/trees from below maximum reservoir
levels for safe use of reservoir surface. Such clearing may be done by cutting/pulling or by
protected fires. In flat side reservoirs large surface area is exposed or reservoir lowering.
Suitable alternatives may be evaluated to make economic use of this area for short time
activities, as farming, sand mining etc.
1.3 CLASSIFICATION OF DAMS
1.3.1 Classification of Dams According To Location
On-Channel: Dam is constructed across the main water feeding river. Examples Tarbela,
Mangla, Simly, Hub dam. To increase the water availability water from other rivers
may be diverted to the dam through feeder channels e.g. Kurram Tangi dam.
Off-Channel: Dam is constructed on a channel having much smaller flow. Major storage
water is transferred from a different nearby river. This is done due to non-availability
of suitable/economic dam site on the major flow river. Example Akhori dam,
Replacement dams for Mangla and Tarbela.
Irrigation storage
Flood storage
Flood surcharge
Free board
H
y
d
r
o
p
o
w
e
r

p
l
a
n
t

Normal conservation level
Max spillway
crest level
Dam crest
Figure 1.4: Multipurpose dam.
Dead storage
P
o
w
e
r

t
u
n
n
e
l

/

i
r
r
i
g
a
t
i
o
n

o
u
t
l
e
t

Dead storage level
River profile
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-6
Ch-1: Introduction
1.3.2 Classification of Dams According to Release Pattern
Storage dam: Water is stored and later released through an outlet for consumptive or non-
consumptive purposes as per requirements.
Recharging dam. There is no outlet provided to release water and all incoming water is
retained. The water infiltrates through the foundation and/or dam body. The main
purpose of the dam is to induce recharge to ground water system in the area. Small
release in d/s channel to allow seepage in the channel bed.
Delay action dam / retarding dam. These dams are used to retard the peak flow of flash
floods. There may or may not be any control over the outflow. For no control over the
outflow the outflow rate varies as function of storage volume / water depth in the
dam. The flood peak is thus considerably attenuated. The outlet capacity is set that
maximum outflow discharge do not exceed the safe capacity of the downstream river
during highest flood. The reservoir empties fully after the flood. For control on
outflow by gates (detention dam) , the flow is released in such a pattern to retain the
water for long time but there is enough storage available to store next flood event.
These dams are usually meant to reduce flood damages as well as to induce maximum
recharge in the area. One type of such dam is a porous dam built of a porous
embankment, e.g. stone gabions.
Tailings dam These dams are constructed away from any river along a topographic slope by
constructing small dikes on three or all four sides to store slurry / waste of mineral
mining and processing facilities. The water evaporates or is evacuated and the solid
contents dry up filling up the storage capacity.
Diversion dam These are hydraulic structures with a main purpose to raise water level to
divert flow into the off taking channels / canals/ hydropower pressure tunnels and
penstock. These are preferably called as barrage or canal head works. The storage
created by these is minimal. E.g. Patrind Weir.
Coffer dam: These are small temporary dams built across the river on upstream and
downstream side of the main dam in order to keep the flow away and the working
area dry. The u/s coffer dam causes the flow through the diversion system and d/s
coffer dam prevents the flooding of the working from backwater effects. After
completion of the main dam the u/s coffer is usually abandoned and drowns in the
reservoir while d/s coffer dam is dismantled and removed.
1.3.3 Classification of dams according to Hydraulic Design
Non-Overflow dam: Flow is not allowed over the embankment crest for reasons of dam
safety. (earth, rock) dams.
Overflow dam The dam body is made of strong material as concrete and flow is allowed
over the dam crest Concrete dams
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-7
Ch-1: Introduction
1.32.4 Classification of dams according to Size
Dams may be classified as small, medium or large as under:
Small. USBR defined small dam as one having maximum height <15 m (50 ft).
Medium: Intermediate sizes 40-70 ft
Large: ICOLD defined large dam as: a dam that follows one or more of following
conditions. (Thomas 1976 P-0)
Dam height >15 m (50 ft) measured from lowest portion of the general foundation
area to the crest
A dam height 10-15 m but it compiles with at least one of the following condition:
a. crest of dam longer than 500 m
b. capacity of the resulting reservoir more than 1 million m
c. maximum flood discharge more than 2000 m
3

3
d. dam has specially difficult foundation problems
/s (70,000 cfs)
e. dam is of unusual design
Unique: Dams exceeding 100 m are considered as unique. Every aspect of its design and
construction must be treated as a problem specifically related to that particular
site.
1.3.5 Classification of Dams According to Filling and Emptying Mode
The storage of a dam may be filled and emptied in short time (one season) or long
time (several seasons). The dams are defined as:
Seasonal: Seasonal dams are filled and then emptied within the same water year (September
to August). Example Tarbela dam. Thus water level in the dam varies from maximum
(normal conservation level) to minimum (dead storage level) in most years. Such
dams have annual releases usually equal or little more than the minimum annual flow.
For very wet or very dry years the reservoir may not reach the extreme levels. The
seasonal dams spread the water stored in wet months over to dry months in the same
year.
Carry over: Filling and emptying of a carry-over dam reservoir continues over more than
one year (e.g. 4 to 5 years). Example. Hub Dam, Kurram Tangi Dam. Thus water
stored in wet years may be released during subsequent dry years The annual releases
are usually more than minimum annual flow but equal to long term average annual
flow. Applicable where wide variations in annual flows. Carry over dams spread
storage during wet years/months over to dry years and months.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-8
Ch-1: Introduction
1.3.6 Classification according to location of service area
Local: The service area of the dam is limited to a single contiguous localized geographic area
located very near the dam. Far located areas and geographic regions do not benefit.
E.g. Kurram Tangi, Simly, Khanpur dams.
Regional: The service area of the dam extends to many widely apart geographic regions
located any distance from the dam. Thus all near and far located areas and geographic
regions get the benefit. The water supply to all areas is possible through a network of
river and canal systems. Exampleas are Tarbela, Diamir-Basha, Kalabagh, Mangla
dams.
1.3.7 Classification according to type of material
A dam can be made of earth, rock, concrete or wood. Dams are classified according to
the materials used as under: (Navak P: 11-18, 33)
A. Embankment Dams (Figs. 1.6, 1.7)
1. Earthfill Dam: These are constructed of selected soils (0.001 d 100 mm)
compacted uniformly and intensively in relatively thin layers (20 to 60 cm) and at
controlled optimum moisture content. Compacted natural soils form more than 50%
of the fill Material. Dams may be designed as: Homogeneous, Zoned or with
impermeable core (Figs. 1.5-1.7). Zoned part is made of relatively finer material that
reduces seepage flow, e.g. clay. The fill material is placed as rolled, hydraulic fill or
semi-hydraulic fill.

Figure 1.5: Earthfill dam. Left-homogeneous, right-zoned dam.
2. Rockfill dam: Over 50% of fill material be of class rock usually a graded rockfill
(0.1 d 1000 mm) is filled in bulk or compacted in thin layers by heavy plant.
Some impervious membranes/materials are placed in the interior or on u/s face of the
embankment to stop/reduce seepage through the dam embankment. Dams section may
be homogeneous, zoned, with impermeable core, or with asphalt or cement concrete
face. Zoned part is made of relatively finer material that reduces seepage flow, e.g.
clay. Core is made of clay, concrete, asphalt concrete etc.
3. Earthfill-rockfill or Earth-rock dams These dams are made of mix of large
proportions of earthfill and rockfill materials.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-9
Ch-1: Introduction
B. Concrete Dams
Concrete dams are formed of cement-concrete placed in the dam body (Figs. 1.8, 1.9).
Concrete dam section designed such that the loading produces compression stress only and
no tension is induced any where. The reinforcement is minimum mainly as temperature
control. Concrete is placed in two ways: Reinforced concrete dam (RC dam) or Roller
compacted concrete (RCC) dams. The variations of concrete dam include:
1. Concrete gravity dam,
2. Concrete arch dam and arch-gravity dam
3. Multiple arch dam
4. Double curvature or dome/cupola dam
5. Buttress dam (head as diamond, roundhead, massive, decked etc)
6. Hollow gravity dam
7. Brick or rock masonry gravity dam
Rubble/random/stone masonry to fill dam section. Concrete / mass concrete as bulk material
in dam section with steeper side slope. RCC section to take loadings, thus decrease section.
1 Gravity dam: Stability due to its mass. Dam straight or slightly curved u/s in plan (no
arch action). The u/s face is vertical or nearly vertical, d/s sloping.
2. Buttress dam: It consists of continuous u/s face supported at regular intervals by d/s
buttress (massive buttress /diamond head, round head) with each section separate.
Ambursen / flat slab buttress / decked buttress.
3. Arch dam: Arch dam has considerable u/s plan curvature. U/s and d/s faces are
nearly straight / vertical. Water loads are transferred onto the abutments or valley
sides by arch action. Arch dam is structurally more efficient than concrete gravity
dams (requires only 10-20% concrete). However abutment strength and geologic
stability is critical to the structural integrity and safety of the dam. Multiple arch
dams.
4. Cupola/Dome/Double curvature dam:. U/s & d/s faces curved in plan and profile
section, curved in plan as well/ as arch (Part of a dome or shell structure).
5. Hollow gravity section made hollow to reduce uplift pressure at d/s side and smaller
total construction materials. (between gravity and buttress dams)
C. Timber/steel dam
The bulk of the dam is made of timber braces with timber board facings. Such dams were
mostly constructed by early gold miners in California USA for obtaining river water for
separating gold dust and getting water power; such dams are not practically used any
longer. The face of earthfill or rockfill dams may be also fitted with timber board for
seepage control.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-10
Ch-1: Introduction
Figure 1.6: Earthfill embankment dams.

Figure 1.7: Rockfill embankment dams.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-11
Ch-1: Introduction
Figure 1.8: Concrete dams.













Figure 1.9: Future Concrete dams.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-12
Ch-1: Introduction
1.4 PLANNING AND DESIGN OF DAM
1.4.1 Stages
Any dam project is carried out at following stages
Initial screening based on river profile and topographic maps.
Reconnaissance plan-uses only any available data
Pre-feasibility plan-little exploration and additional field data
Feasibility plan-Extensive exploration and additional field data
Design stage: point tests/surveys to finalize design
At each succeeding stage, the plan is firmed up with more precise details, dimensions and
analysis; More data at each successive stage. The design stage ends up with drawings
appropriate for construction activities. Still further details/revision continues well during the
construction of the dam as new information is gathered or some already available information
is found to be incorrect and not valid.
1.4.2 Data Required
Large amount of data is required for planning/designing of dams (Golze P. 47-50, USBR
1949 P.5-10). These include as:
Location & vicinity map
Topographic maps/aerial photographs of dam site
Elevation surveys/triangulation +bench mark
Transportation map (road, rail, air)
Geological / rock formations data of dam site
Seismic/tectonic activity map
Climatic data (P, T, ET, wind, sunshine)
Stream flow data (daily average flows)
Sediment data
Demographic/land ownership/housing data for the reservoir area
River environment/ecology (u/s, at site, d/s) (fish, w/life, birds, flora, fauna,
vegetation)
Project water requirement
Power requirements & national grid / transmission lines
Flood data (instantaneous peak flow rates, time to peak, base time, flood duration,
flood volumes, flow hydrograph, etc) of all or major floods
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-13
Ch-1: Introduction
Water rights
River hydrographic data (bed levels, flood levels, cross section, bank/valley
levels)
Groundwater table data in the vicinity, u/s and d/s area
Public recreation need
Land evaluation
Public/Private buildings
Availability of construction materials
River stage-discharge data (u/s, tail water)
Geo-political economic data
1.4.3 The Planning/Design Team
Dam planning/design multi-task activity; various tasks are as:
1. Site selection, 2. topographic surveys, 3. water availability assessment, 4. sizing and
layout, 5. geologic surveys and construction materials investigations, 6. geologic evaluation
of foundation, rim, abutment and pond area, 7.dam section design, 8. dam seepage and
stability analysis, 9. Diversion arrangements details (diversion tunnel, coffer dam), 10. floods
and spillways, 11. hydropower works, 12. irrigation outlets and irrigation system design, 13.
Reservoir sedimentation, 14. Reservoir operation studies, 15. Material quantities and costing,
16. Environmental studies, 17. Land acquisition and replacement, etc.
Thus planning and design of dam is a multi-disciplinary task and require teamwork of
following disciplines:
1. Project Manager
2. Water resources engineer
3. Layout planner
4. Surveyors (topographic and elevation)
5. Hydrology +meteorology
6. Engineering geologist, Geophysist/Siesmologist
7. Geotechnical and Geophysical exploration specialist / Drillers
8. Geo-technical / foundation design engineers
9. Hydraulic engineer
10. Structural engineer (for structural design of outlets, spillway. Powerhouse, energy
dissipation)
11. Mechanical engineer (for design of controls, gates, valves, hoists, )
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-14
Ch-1: Introduction
12. Hydropower engineer
13. Electrical engineer
14. Infrastructure/road/municipal engineer / Civil engineer
15. Instrumentation and telecommunication engineer
16. Environmental engineer, Environmental scientists (fish, wild life, flora, fauna, etc)
17. Economists
18. Construction planner / manager
19. Quantity Surveyor / Costing engineer
20. Irrigation engineer
21. Irrigation agronomist
22. Soil expert
1.5 DAM SITE SELECTION
The purpose of a dam is to retain and store large quantities of water in a safe way.
Many considerations are analyzed. Dams can be built anywhere if you can spend enough
money. However preferred site have following characteristics which lead to lower project
costs. Thus alternate dam sites/axis location are evaluated for most cost effective choice.
1. Small river channel width with steep side gorge: short dam crest length, leads to
large storage for small dam length
2. A wide and gently sloping valley upstream of the dam site (for storage dams) and
narrow and steeply sloping valley for hydropower dams.
3. River channel and valley has very flat slopes u/s of dam site (leads to large
storage for small dam heights).
4. Deep reservoir possible require less area and lesser land costs, less surface
evaporation
5. Enough water flow/yield available to meet requirements/demand
6. High sediment load tributaries are excluded
7. Geology favorable for foundation (foundation can be designed at any site, but it
increases costs), competent hard rock is most suitable.
8. Abutments are water tight, and reservoir rim allow minimum percolation and
seepage losses.
9. Small river sediment rate (longer dam life) Depend on river morphology and
catchment characteristics. Gomal Zam has 10 times sediment load than Kurram
Tangi dam, thus large dead storage space is adopted.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-15
Ch-1: Introduction
10. Land use of reservoir area is minimal lower economic values means lower
compensations.
11. Reservoir area not very sensitive to environment (wild life parks, endangered
species, historical places, monuments etc).
12. No seismic and tectonic activities or active faults in and near the site.
13. Socio-political stability (no unstable gestures) (Gomal-Zam, Mirani, Kurram
Tangi dams), Diamer-Basha vs Kalabagh dams.
14. Reservoir and dam area less populated
15. Site have adequate stream flow record
16. Site is easily accessible; approach road is present or can be developed easily.
17. Construction material available nearby easily
18. Site near load center (demand area) for water+power
19. No mineral resources in reservoir area (present or future)
20. Site allows a deep reservoir & small surface area (less land costs and small
evaporation losses).
21. Existing infrastructure, e.g. highway, least affected. E.g. KKH and Bhasha-
Diamere dam.
1.6 DAM COMPONENTS
Elements of a typical dam include (Figs. 1.10 and 1.11):
1.6.1 Main Dam
This is the main structure built across the river. The height of a dam depends upon
desired storage capacity and the site conditions. The crest length of he dam depend upon
topography at the dam site. The dam may be built of many different materials. The stored
water is released from the dam as per requirements.
1.6.2 Flanks/Abutment:
The rock mass on right & left banks of the river constitute abutments. Dam is joined
with and supported by the abutments. In addition outlet tunnels, diversion tunnel, spillway are
also placed in the flanks. The geology of the abutments has to be strong enough to enable
placing various structural components without any risk. In addition abutments need to be of
competent rock without any structural defects and lowest permeability
1.6.3 Saddle Dam:
The reservoir is usually formed by the main dam on one side and low/high hills on all
other sides of the reservoir. In most cases the elevation of the hills along the rim of the dam is
much higher than the reservoir maximum water level. In some other cases elevations of
surrounding hills along a part of the rim/periphery of the reservoir is not high enough over a
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-16
Ch-1: Introduction
small section to completely contain the stored water and a saddle (low level place) is formed.
Water can flow out through the saddle. A small embankment is then constructed at this
low/saddle point to seal off the reservoir rim and is called as saddle dam. Example: Sukian
dam and Jari dam for Mangla Dam project.
1.6.4 Diversion Channel/Tunnel
These channel or tunnel are constructed prior to dam construction such that river flow
is passed around and away from the dam site through the diversion tunnels and that than dam
site remain dry and accessible to construction at all time. The capacity of diversion structure
is set such that most probable floods likely to occur during the construction period can be
passed over without danger of overtopping of cofferdam and inundation of construction area.
Necessary arrangements are made at d/s end for energy dissipation. These tunnels may be
abandoned (plugged Simly dam) after project completion or converted to irrigation / power
/ desilting tunnels. Diversion tunnel may not be provided (Mirani dam) and u/s coffer dam.

Figure 1.10: Dam components (http://www.dnr.state.wi.us/ORG/WATER/WM/dsfm/dams/gallery.html)
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-17
Ch-1: Introduction




























Figure 1.11: Dam layout showing main dam, saddle dam, u/s and d/s coffer dam, spillway
and stilling basin, diversion tunnel(s), power tunnel, power house and irrigation canal.
550
550
550
500
450
500
450
400 500
400
PH
450
N
S ill
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-18
Ch-1: Introduction
1.6.5 Cofferdam
These are small temporary dams built u/s and d/s of the dam site to make the
construction area dry and workable. The u/s cofferdam causes water to flow through the
diversion tunnel and the d/s cofferdam prevents backwater level to inundate the construction
area. Coffer dam may be dovetailed in u/s part of dam (Mangla) or abandoned. Material used
earth, rock, concrete etc. Arrangemnet are required for control of seepage across the coffer
dam.
1.6.6 Spillway
This is a water release/conveyance structure to pass the large flood volumes safely
across the dam without danger of overtopping of the dam crest. There would be one or more
spillways usually at different levels (Service, additional, emergency). The lower spillway is
used to release often occurring flood and regular inflows and is called as service spillway. It
has usually more elaborate arrangements and may be free flowing or gated. The auxiliary or
emergency spillway is set at or above normal conservation level and has fewer arrangements
and is usually free flowing. This is used only during flood events of extra-ordinary nature.
Fuse plug, rubber dam etc may be used to delay water release and possible additional storage
at the reservoir.
The spillway may be a integral part of the main dam (mostly for concrete dams) or be a
separate structure in the dam abutments.
1.6.7 Outlet Works
(a) Intake Structure / Tower: This is a structure to admit and control flow of water into the
irrigation/power outlets. It would be a tower or inlet flush with reservoir side walls. Gates
may be provided at u/s, intermediate or d/s end of the outlet tunnel. Necessary provision is
made to keep the intake operation for long after sedimentation by having multiple water entry
levels particularly for domestic supply purposes. Multi level inlet openings may be used.
(b) Irrigation/Power Outlet Tunnel: This is a large water conveyance structure to release
water to irrigation network and/or powerhouse turbines. The outlet is in the form of a tunnel
dug or formed through the abutment / flank for earth / rockfill dams or through the dam body
for a concrete dam. At the u/s end an intake is provided along with gates, trash rack. The
tunnel design must eliminate risk of cavitation and/or aeration. Gates may be placed at u/s,
d/s or intermediate location. The power tunnel is transitioned into surge chamber,
penstock/scroll case etc. Energy dissipation structure may be provided at d/s end, if needed.
Irrigation outlet may release into a canal or into the river if demand site is at distance from
the dam. The intake level of the tunnel is kept below or at the dead storage level. Air vent is
provided to minimize cavitation. Water cushon for vortex control are also provided.
(c) Low Level Outlet: A low outlet tunnel may be provided to flush sediments, draw water
from below dead storage level under very drought condition, emptying of reservoir in
emergencies, draw water during repair of outlet tunnel/gates, etc. The intake level is kept
much lower than the intake level main irrigation tunnel. May discharge into stilling basin for
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-19
Ch-1: Introduction
spillways/outlet works or as a separate energy dissipation structure provided. [Similar to
under sluices in a barrage.]
(d) Gates/Valves/
(e) Trash Rack, air duct for cavitation control
1.6.8 Drainage System
Dams are designed to store water with least seepage through the dam embankment
and the foundation but seepage do occur. The drainage/seepage water also causes tremendous
uplift pressure particularly at d/s half of the dam base. Features are included in the dam
design to minimize seepage through the foundation and through the dam embankment and
uplift pressure. Cutoff wall, sheet piles, slurry trench, etc.
Grout Certain: An impermeable zone is created under the dam.
Grout Blanket: Impermeable area is created u/s of dam.
Pressure relief / Drainage Wells: Wells are installed at d/s area to pick and
remove seepage water to reduce uplift pressure in the
foundation area.
Drainage gallery A horizontal/inclined gallery is formed in the body of the dam
(specially in concrete dams) where water from drainage wells
discharge into and is ultimately flow out of the dam body. It
also intercepts leaks through dam body.
Horizontal Blanket Drain: To intercept seepage lines at base of dam on d/s side.
Chimney Drain: Vertical or inclined drainage filter layer (usually d/s of the
impermeable clay core) to intercept seepage flow.
Toe Drain: A drain is provided at toe of dam (homogeneous coarse fill) to
intercept seepage flow inside the dam body.
D/S Trench: Trench provided at d/s of dam to intercept seepage flow lines.
Impermeable blanket to lengthen the seepage path and lower hydraulic
gradient and seepage rate.
1.6.8 Preliminary Works
Civil works, infrastructures, buildings required to be provided before start of
construction of main dam work. These include offices, staff housing, community buildings,
water supply, approach road, client/consultant/contractor camp, labor camp, security
arrangements, rest house, rail sidings, air strip, hele-pad, etc.
1.6.9 Hydropower Development
(a) Powerhouse: Building to house turbine, generators, mechanical workshop, valves, draft
tube, office, control room, visitor area, up transformer, etc for hydropower generation.
(b) Penstock: This is a large diameter pressure pipe used to deliver water to turbines.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-20
Ch-1: Introduction
(c) Surge chamber. To contain water hammer surge on plant load rejection / sudden shut-
down.
(d) Switchyard: This is an area to install electrical equipment to change low to high tension
power supply for further transmission.
1.6.10 Slope protection/Riprap
Stone is placed on u/s & d/s dam slopes for protection against damage due to wave
action, rain water, burrowing animals. Parapet wall may be used to protect dam top against
sudden waves generated by strong winds, tsunami, etc.
1.6.11 Dam Instrumentation
Various gages/instruments are installed in the dam body, foundations, spillway to
monitor settlement, movement, stresses, pore water/uplift pressure, earthquake.
1.6.12 Stilling Basin
To dissipate excess energy of diversion tunnel, low level outlet, irrigation tunnel,
spillway, etc.
1.6.13 Gallery/Shafts
These are provided in the dam body for access to interior of concrete dam body.
These are horizontal, vertical (with round stair ways), sloping.
1.6.14: Operational buildings
These are buildings required for operation of the dam and works. These include
Office buildings, Rest House, Security buildings, Staff residences and other community
buildings, gate control room.
1.6.15: Temporary works:
These are installations required for temporary use and are removed after project
completion. These include contractors camp, material processing, handling and stock area,
machine room, casting yard, steel fabrication, labor camp, etc.
1.7 MERITS AND DEMERITS OF DAMS
1.7.1 Embankment Dam
a Merits (Novak P-14)
1. Suitable to type of sites in wide valleys and relatively steep sided gorges alike.
2. Adoptable to a broad range of foundation conditions-from competent rock to soft
and compressible or relatively pervious soil foundation.
3. Use of natural materials at smaller cost thus no need to import or transport large
quantities of processed materials or cement to the side.
4. Subject to the design criteria, embankment dams are extremely flexible to
accommodate different fill materials (rock, earth) if suitably zoned internally.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-21
Ch-1: Introduction
5. Construction process highly mechanized and continuous (less human handling as
form work, curing time)
6. If properly designed, dam can safely accommodate appreciable degree of
settlement-deformation without risk of serious cracking and possible failure.
Embankment dams withstand earthquake better. However the foundation of these
dams, if deep and of unconsolidated origin, is more liable to settlement and failure
by earthquake (liquification).
b Demerits
Inherent greater susceptibility to damage or destruction due to over topping
(require adequate flood relief and separate spillway).
Vulnerable to concealed leakage and internal piping/erosion in dam or foundation.
c. limitations
Spillway outlet are separate from main dam.
1.7.2 Concrete/Masonry Dams
a Concrete Dam Merits (Novak P-17)
1. Concrete dams, except arch and cupola, are suitable to site topography of wide or
narrow valley alike, provided that a competent rock foundation is present at
moderate depths (<5 m) (arch best for narrow section)
2. Concrete dams are not sensitive to overtopping under extreme flood conditions.
3. All concrete dams can accommodate a crest spillway, if necessary, over the entire
length, provided that steps are taken to control d/s erosion and possible
undermining of the dam. Thus cost of separate spillway is avoided.
4. Outlet pipe works, valves and ancillary works are readily and safely housed in
chambers or galleries within the dam.
5. Has high inherent ability to withstand seismic disturbances.
6. Cupola dam is extremely strong and efficient structure for a narrow valley with
competent abutments.
b Demerits
1. Concrete dams require sound and stable rock foundations.
2. These require processed natural materials of suitable quality and quantity for
aggregate and importation to site and storage of bulk cement and other materials.
3. Traditional mass concrete construction is slow, labor intensive and discontinuous,
and require adequate skill for formwork, concreting etc.
4. Cost per unit of concrete dam much higher than embankment fill. Smaller
quantities seldom counter balance for dams of given height.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-22
Ch-1: Introduction
1.8 DAM FOCUS POINTS (Novak P 10-11)
Dams have following focus points and thus differ from other major civil engineering
structures.
1. Every dam, large or small, is quite unique; foundation geology, material
characteristics, catchment yield and flood hydrology are each site specific.
2. Dams are required to function at or close to their design loadings for extended
periods.
3. Dams do not have a structural life span, components must be designed for long
life). Dams may have notional life for accounting/economic purposes, or a
functional life span dictated by the reservoir sedimentation.
4. Majority of dams are of earth fill made from a range of natural soils, and are least
consistent of construction materials.
5. Dam engineering draws together a range of disciplines to a quite unique degree
(hydrology, hydraulics, geology, geotech, structure etc).
6. FIRST PLAN: All type of dams may be constructed at the site, thus plan
alternative design until discarded due to technical, financial or environmental
reasons
7. Dam engineering is critically dependent upon the application of informed
engineering judgment.
1.9: ELEVATION-AREA-VOLUME RELATIONSHIP
Theelevation-volume-area relationship for a reservoir/dam describes the variations of
volume and surface area with elevation/height. This relationship is determined from elevation
contour map of the reservoir area. The elevation is determined by topographic survey at grid
or random locations (grid spacing varies with level of investigation from 200 m for pre-
feasibility study to 50 m or less for feasibility study). Wide contours indicate a gently sloping
flat valley area and closed spaced contours indicate steeply sloping cliff sides. Contours are
drawn at an interval of 5 to 10 ft (Fig. 1.12). Surface area is measured for each contour. The
incremental volume between two consecutive contours is determined as V =(A
1
+A
2
Vol. =
)/2 x
h {h is contour interval}. Total volume at any elevation is obtained by adding successive
incremental area as V = V. Table 1.1 below show calculations for elevation-volume-area
relationship. The reservoir surface area and volume is related as (H =Elevation datum):

H
0
dH Area and Area =dV/dH, (1.1)
The data points are plotted with volume or area on x-axis and elevation on y-axis (volume on
primary x-axis, and area on secondary x-axis) (Fig. 1.13).
Equations may be developed (usually a power function) to find elevation for a given storage
or area as
El =A (Vol)
B
+datum and El =C (Area)
D
+datum
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-23
Ch-1: Introduction
Table 1.1 : Elevation-Area-Volume Relationship for a Dam.
Map Scale:
1 inch =5000 ft
1 sq in =5000
2
=25,000,000 sq ft
1 sq in =5000
2
/ 43,560 =573.92 Acres
Selected datum (ft amsl) = 1800
Elevation Height above
datum
Map area Plan Area Incremental
volume
Total storage
capacity
(ft amsl) (ft) (sq. in) (Acres) (AF) Acre Feet ThAF
1820 20 0.00 0 0 0 0
1850 50 0.49 281 4,993 5,043 5
1900 100 1.88 1,079 34,005 39,048 39
1950 150 4.11 2,359 85,945 124,993 125
2000 200 7.17 4,115 161,846 286,838 287
2050 250 11.03 6,330 261,134 547,972 548
2100 300 15.69 9,005 383,379 931,352 931
2150 350 21.14 12,133 528,438 1,459,789 1,460

Example. For Kurram Tangi dam the elevation-storage-area relation are described as:
(volume in AF, elevation is ft amsl, and area is in acres and 1805 is datum) (Figs. 1.14 to
1.17).
El =2.6905 x (Vol)
0.3432
El =2.5821 x (Area)
+1805
0.5226
For some cases more than one equation may be needed to describe the data for different
ranges. Inverse equations may be derived to find volume or area corresponding to any
elevation, e.g. for Kurram Tangi dam elevation-area-volume dam is described as (Volume in
AF, Elevation in ft amsl, Area in acres and Datum =1805 ft amsl..
+1805
Vol.=0.05595 (Elevation - Datum)
2.913
Area =0.163 (Elevation ft - Datum)

Equation form of the elevation-area-volume relationship may be useful for various purposes,
e.g. reservoir simulations, flood routing for spillway design and diversion tunnel design.
1.9132

1.10 DAM HEIGHT
The height of any dam above the lowest level in the river channel is determined from
(i) the gross storage (live storage +dead storage) capacity of the dam, (ii) the space required
to pass maximum design flood over the spillway (called flood surcharge), (iii) the wave
height generated from extreme winds, (iv) the wave runup over the upstream sloping face due
to wind gusts and (v) the free board. The reservoir level corresponding to normal reservoir
storage is called as normal conservation level NCL and is determined from the elevation-
volume relationship of the dam. Referring to Figs 1.13, the normal conservation level is
determined as 2076.2 for gross storage capacity of 0.716 MAF. The wave height and wave
runup is determined from reservoir area, depth and prevailing wind speeds in the vicinity of
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-24
Ch-1: Introduction
the dam. Free board of 5 to 10 ft are customary depending upon the reservoir importance and
other factors.
For Gross storage =0.716 MAF (Live storage =0.55 as determined from mass curve /
reservoir operation studies, and dead storage =0.166 MAF as determined from sedimentation
analysis), the required dam height is worked as:
Minimum River bed level at dam site =1805.0 ft amsl
Normal conservation level for 0.716 MAF =2.6905x(716000)
0.3432
Maximum reservoir depth =2076.2-1805.0 =271.2 ft
+1805 =2076.2 ft amsl
Flood surcharge (from PMF routing) =6.5 ft
Wave height e.g. =3.5 ft
Wave runup e.g. =4.7 ft
Free board e.g. =10 ft
Total dam height =271.5 +6.5 +3.5 +4.7 +10.0 =295.9 ft
Dam crest level =1805.0 +295.9 =2100.90 ft (say 2101 ft amsl)
190

2100 ft
2050 ft
2000 ft
1950 ft

Kurram Tangi
Dam
2150 ft
Figure 1.12: Topographic surface contours of Kurram Tangi Dam.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-25
Ch-1: Introduction

KURRAM TANGI DAM: Area-Elevation-Capacity-Curves
0
5
39
125
287
548
931
1,460
0.05
0.28
1.08
2.36
4.12
6.33
9.00
12.13
1800
1825
1850
1875
1900
1925
1950
1975
2000
2025
2050
2075
2100
2125
2150
2175
0 200 400 600 800 1,000 1,200 1,400 1,600
Capacity (Th.Acre-ft)
E
l
e
v
a
t
i
o
n

(
f
t
)
1800
1825
1850
1875
1900
1925
1950
1975
2000
2025
2050
2075
2100
2125
2150
2175
0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
Area (Thousand Acres)
E
l
e
v
a
t
i
o
n

(
f
t
)
Reservoir Capacity
Reservoir Surface Area

Figure 1.13: Kurram Tangi Dam: Elevation-Volume-Surface Area Curves.

KTD: Elevation vs Reservoir Surface Area Curve
52
281
1,079
2,359
4,115
6,330
9,005
12,133
y =2.582141x
0.522649
R
2
=0.999916
0
25
50
75
100
125
150
175
200
225
250
275
300
325
350
375
0 1,000 2,000 3,000 4,000 5,000 6,000 7,000 8,000 9,000 10,000 11,000 12,000 13,000 14,000
Surface Area (Acres)
E
l
e
v
a
t
i
o
n

F
t

+

1
8
0
0
Figure 1.14: Elevation-Surface Area curve fit to data.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-26
Ch-1: Introduction
KTD: Elevat ion vs Reser voir Capacit y Cur ve
20
50
100
150
200
250
300
350
0
20
40
60
80
100
120
140
160
180
200
220
240
260
280
300
320
340
360
380
0 200 400 600 800 1,000 1,200 1,400 1,600
Volume (ThAF)
E
l
e
v
a
t
i
o
n

F
t

+
1
8
0
0
Figure 1.15: Kurram Tangi Dam: Elevation-volume curve fit to data.

Figure 1.16: Kurram Tangi Dam. Surface area vs. elevation curve.
KTD Elevation vs Area Curve
52
281
1,079
2,359
4,115
6,330
9,005
12,133
y =0.162962x
1.913170
R
2
=0.999916
-
1,000
2,000
3,000
4,000
5,000
6,000
7,000
8,000
9,000
10,000
11,000
12,000
13,000
0 20 40 60 80 100 120 140 160 180 200 220 240 260 280 300 320 340 360 380
Elevation (1800 +ft)
S
u
r
f
a
c
e

A
r
e
a

(
A
c
r
e
s
)
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-27
Ch-1: Introduction
KTD Elevation vs Capacity Curve
0 5
39
125
287
548
931
1,460
0
200
400
600
800
1,000
1,200
1,400
1,600
0 20 40 60 80 100 120 140 160 180 200 220 240 260 280 300 320 340 360 380
Elevation (1800+ft)
V
o
l
u
m
e

(
T
h
A
F
)
Figure 1.17: Kurram Tangi Dam: Volume vs. elevation curve.

1.11 DAM LAYOUT
Dam embankment
Once the site of a dam is selected, the layout of dam embankment is carried out. The
outline of dam is done on a contour map of potential dam location. Following steps are taken
(Fig. 1.18).
Data: Let dam crest level =2100 ft, u/s face slope =1:3.5, d/s face slope =1:3.0; contour
interval =50 ft, river bed level =1805 ft
Earthfill-Rockfill dam:
Crest:
1. Locate the centerline of dam crest by connecting two points on 2100 ft contour line
along right and left abutments such that the dam has smallest crest length. The
geologic makeup of the foundations and abutments is also considered. Measure the
crest length.
2. Mark the crest width (e.g. 30 ft) parallel to the selected centerline.
3. Mark chainage along the dam crest with 0+00 at one of abutments, e.g. right
abutment. Determine the dam crest length.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-28
Ch-1: Introduction
U/s face:
4. Determine the horizontal distance corresponding to 50 ft vertical height for u/s face (
=50 x 3.5 =175 ft). [3.5 :1 is slope of u/s face]
5. Mark a line A-A on u/s face parallel to crest edge spaced 175 ft apart between 2
nd
6. Mark lines B-B, C-C, D-D, E-E 175 ft apart between other contour lines of 2000,
1950, 1900, 1850 ft, respectively.

contour line of 2050 ft.
7. Mark location of point F of lowest elevation in the river channel.
8. Connect points A-B-C-D-E-F-E-D-C-B-A with a smooth line and connect the
outline with crest edge on u/s face. This defines the dam outline along u/s sloping
face.
D/s face:
9. Determine the horizontal distance corresponding to 50 ft vertical height for d/s face (=
50 x 3.0 =150 ft). [3:1 is slope of d/s face]
10. Mark a line G-G on d/s face parallel to crest edge spaced 150 ft apart between 2
nd
11. Mark lines H-H, I-I, J-J, K-K 150 ft apart between other contour lines of 2000,
1950, 1900, 1850 ft, respectively.

contour line of 2050 ft.
12. Locate point L of lowest elevation in river channel on d/s side.
13. Connect points G-H-I-J-K-L-K-J -I-H-G with smooth line and connect this with
crest edge on d/s side. This defines the dam outline along d/s sloping face.
Crest length, Longitudinal Section and Cross section
14. Draw longitudinal section (L-section) along centerline of dam crest. This will provide
valley profile between the river left and right abutments (Fig. 1.19).
15. Draw dam cross section at maximum depth (section F-L at Ch 7+45 in Fig. 1.19), and
also at other chainage, e.g. at every 200 ft apart (Fig. 1.19).
The layout of concrete gravity dam is similar to earthfill dams with the exception that
u/s and d/s face slopes are very small (u/s ~1H:10V, d/s ~0.7H:1V)
Concrete gravity dam:
Dam appurtenants
The layout of dam appurtenants (spillway, outlet, diversion tunnel, power house, etc)
are determined such that space requirements of all dam components is adequately met. Many
trial may be needed to finalize the layout of dam embankment and dam appurtenants.
Figs 1.20 to 1.23 describe the alternate layouts for Kurram Tangi dam for dam
embankment and dam appurtenants. Figs 1.24 to 1.29 show layout of major dams in Pakistan.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-29
Ch-1: Introduction

Figure 1.18: Topographic surface contours at a dam and layout of dam outline.
2
0
5
0

2
0
0
0

1
9
5
0
1
9
0
0

1
8
5
0

2
1
0
0

2
1
0
0

2
0
5
0

2
0
0
0

1
9
5
0

1
9
0
0

1
8
5
0

Dam Crest;
El =2100 ft

R
I
V
E
R


DOWNSTREAM
SLOPING FACE
UPSTREAM
SLOPING FACE
AA
AB
AC
AD
AE
AA
AB
AC
AD
AE
AG
AH
AI
AG
AH
AI
AJ
AJ
AK AK
AL
AF
SLOPE: u/s =3.5H:1V; d/s =3.0H:1V; SCALE =1:5000.





2+00 4+00 6+00
8+00 10+00 12+00 14+00
Crest
length =
1650 ft
175 ft
175 ft
175 ft
175 ft
175 ft
30 ft
150 ft
150 ft
150 ft
150 ft
150 ft
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-30
Ch-1: Introduction
Dam Crest; El =2100 Ft, Length =1650 ft
Chainage (ft)
2
+
0
0

4
+
0
0

6
+
0
0

8
+
0
0

1
0
+
0
0

1
2
+
0
0

1
4
+
0
0

0
+
0
0

1
6
+
0
0

1800
1900
2000
2100
E
l
e
v
a
t
i
o
n

(
f
t
)

(a) Longitudinal section
Dam crest: El =2100 ft, width =30 ft
Normal conservation level =2081.6 ft
U/s slope =
1V:3.5H
D/s slope =
1V:3.0H
River level =1805 ft
885 ft
1032 ft
(b): Dam maximum cross section at F-L Ch 7+45 ft.
295 ft
1947 ft
Dam crest: El =2100 ft
River level =1805 ft
675 ft
787 ft
(c): Dam X-section at Ch 4+00 ft.
225 ft
1492 ft
Valley El =1875-1950 ft
225 ft
El =1875 ft El =1875 ft
Dam crest: El =2100 ft
River level =1805 ft
765 ft
578 ft
(d): Dam X-section at Ch 12+00 ft.
255 ft
1373 ft
El =1845
El =1935 ft
165 ft
Dam crest: El =2100 ft
420 ft
368 ft
(e): Dam X-section at Ch 14+00 ft.
140 ft
818 ft
El =1960 ft
El =1995 ft
105 ft
Figure 1.19: Longitudinal and cross section of dam of Fig. 1.18. Scale:

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-31
Ch-1: Introduction

Figure 1.20: Contour map of dam area of Kurram Tangi Dam.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-32
Ch-1: Introduction

Figure 1.21: Dam embankment layout of Kurram Tangi Dam.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-33
Ch-1: Introduction

Figure 1.22: Layout plan of concrete face rockfill dam (CFRD) embankment and
appurtenances for Kurram Tangi Dam.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-34
Ch-1: Introduction

Figure 1.23: Layout plan of concrete gravity dam embankment and appurtenances for
Kurram Tangi Dam.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-35
Ch-1: Introduction

1.12 DAM ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS
Construction of dams significantly alters the river flow regime. The flow in flood
season is considerably reduced while the flow in other months is increased. The changed flow
pattern affects the ecology and echo system of the river d/s reaches. The dam construction
affects the migration of cold-water fish for their annual spawning voyage to u/s cold-water
regions. However the dam reservoir provide an excellent place for supervised fish
development. The river may have cropped area which is seasonally flooded by the river flood
flows (sailaba area). Construction of dam may lower the flood flows thus the sailaba area
need to be irrigated by alternative means. Affected area adjacent to the dam may be provided
supplemental canal or tubewell irrigation facilities. Waterlogging and high watertable may
appear in some places above or below the dam site.
The sediment carried by the flood water get trapped in the dam and thus a small amount
of sediments enters the d/s reach of the rivers. The imbalance in the sediment flow combined
with educed flood flows causes a aggradations of the river bed. This slowly lead to raising of
the flood levels in the affected river reach requiring a constant raising of flood dikes and
spurs. The sediment reduction due to dams lead to erosion/degradation of the river delta at the
entrance to the ocean. Thus erosion of coastal areas is negatively affected by the construction
of dams.
It is required that environmental impacts of dam may be evaluated independently and
necessary mitigation measures may be taken to mitigate and minimize the adverse
environmental impacts.
1.13 RESETTLEMENT
The construction of dam requires large land area to be occupied by dam embankment,
spillway channel, outlet canals, hydropower plant, offices, approach roads, housing facilities,
etc. In addition the reservoir occupies very large surface area in many square kilometers. The
area to be occupied by a dam and reservoir has to be possessed before the construction of the
dam. The affected area may be under mix of private and public ownership. The area may be
partly or wholly used for various productive purposes as cropping, grazing, rock quarrying,
public entertainment, parks, residential, commercial or industrial purposes, etc. Most of dam
sites are usually remote to present urban and industrial centers; thus a significant part of the
affected area may be barren and unproductive.
Construction of dam will deprive the current occupants of the area from productive
benefits. Nevertheless some inhabitants occupying the river banks and nearby villages will be
needed to be moved out of the area and resettled. The affected persons will not only loose
their residential houses but most often their means of livelihood (agriculture, small to
medium business etc.) In addition the dam and reservoir may inundate some places of social-
religion nature. Some transportation corridors (rail lines, highway, and other roads) may get
submerged. Thus dam project must include a plan to resettle the affected persons to new
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-36
Ch-1: Introduction
places, restoring their economic livelihood, etc which is socio-politically acceptable to the
affected population groups. The affected persons may be provided compensation in the form
of cash, kind (equivalent housing and business units in some nearby areas). It is also
important to ensure the social and cultural harmony and adjustment of the people moving to
new locations.
The transportation corridors have to be moved to new locations above and away from
the dam and reservoirs. The religious and social/cultural monuments and places must be
planned to be protected by flood dikes, by moving to higher and safer levels, etc. Else the
affected persons will react very strongly to the dam project, jeopardizing the whole project.
Monuments of lesser importance may not be protected due to the large numbers. Various
socio-cultural-political groups must be approached, contacted and satisfied to come with
suitable resettlement plans, which is acceptable to both the affected persons and the dam
owners.


Fig. Dam failure.

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-37
Ch-1: Introduction

Figure 1.24: Layout and cross section of Mangla Dam.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-38
Ch-1: Introduction
Figure 1.25: Layout plan and cross section of Tarbella Dam.

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-39
Ch-1: Introduction
Figure 1.26: Layout plan and cross section of Hub Dam.

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-40
Ch-1: Introduction
Figure 1.27: Layout plan and cross section of Khanpur Dam.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-41
Ch-1: Introduction
Figure 1.28: Layout plan and cross section of Simly Dam.

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 1-42
Ch-1: Introduction
Figure 1.29: Layout plan and cross section of Bolan Dam.

References:
To be completed.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-1
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Chapter - 2
DAM HYDROLOGY AND SEDIMENTATION
2.1 PURPOSES
Hydrologic analysis is very important study for any dam and reservoir project.
Hydrological study is required to establish:
i. Water availability/yield (average, dependable, probable etc); flow duration curve
(FDC) for run-of-the-river hydropower projects
ii. Water demand (in coordination with irrigation team)
iii. To determine storage volume required to meet the demand (live, dead, gross)
iv. Flood analysis for purposes of river diversion
v. Capacity of diversion tunnels and height of coffer dam (with hydraulic team)
vi. PMP/PMF/ Project design flood
vii. Flood surcharge for spillway design flood vis--vis spillway capacity (with
hydraulic team)
viii. Wave height/wave run up (+ hydraulic team)
ix. Reservoir Sedimentation
x. Reservoir operation study /reservoir simulations
xi. Reservoir rule curves
2.2 TERMINOLOGY (Punmia p-219)
Water yield. This is the amount of water that can be supplied from the reservoir in a specific
interval of time (usually one year).
Safe/firm yield. The maximum of water that can be guaranteed during a critical dry period.
Secondary yield. Quantity available in excess of safe yield during periods of wet years / high
floods.
Average yield. Arithmetic average of firm + secondary yield over a long period of time.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-2
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Dependable yield. Yield that can be guaranteed with certain probability p (e.g. irrigation-
75%, hydropower -90%, water supply 100%). Thus the design demand flows
will be met and fully satisfied for p% of the years.

Figure 2.1: Hydrological cycle and reservoirs.
(Source: http://www.dnr.state.wi.us/ORG/WATER/WM/dsfm/dams/gallery.html)
2.3 ASSESSMENT OF WATER YIELD/AVAILABILITY
Water flows in the rivers are generated from hydrologic cycle (Fig. 2.1) and the
rainfall/ snowfall in the river catchment area. Assessment of water yield/availability for a
dam is carried on the basis of long term flow record at the site of the dam; longer the record,
better the results (Mutreja p:794). If actual record of the flow is not available for a
sufficiently long time, then flow record may be synthesized. Probabilistic analysis is carried
out to determine the dependable yield. For storage dams the flow volumes over short time
periods (10-day, month) are important whereas for a run-of-the river hydropower project
instantaneous discharges are important.
2.3.1 Flow Data
Assessment of water yield/water availability is based on accurate stream flow data at
the dam site of a long period. Records of historic flow data are rarely available of sufficient
time period. In some cases as for small dams flow record may not be available at all. For
other cases the flow record may be available for the dam for short durations. In yet other
cases flow record may be available for long duration but for a location that is u/s or d/s of the
dam site. If data of adequate length/quality is not available at the dam site, then the flow data
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-3
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
at dam site may be extended/ synthesized by known hydrologic/ statistical procedures. The
accuracy of the measured flow data is also important. Whenever possible the accuracy of the
measured flow data must be checked for symmetric/non symmetric errors, measurement
errors and stationarity/homogeneity/trend in the data. The dam may be used to store the flows
of the river over which dam is constructed or else flows of other rivers may be diverted to the
dam site for supplementing the storage. For an off-channel storage dam all river flows may
not be diverted to the dam due to limited diversion feeder channel capacity.
The length of flow record is preferably 100+ years. For most dam sites minimum flow
data of 20 to 30 years is needed to undertake meaningful hydrological analysis. Following
methods may be used to determine the river flows in order of preference
1- Historic stream flow is data available at the dam site for sufficient long period:
Data of measured flows (hourly, average daily record as cfs or m
3
2- Flow data at dam site (Q
/s) are available for
long time. Use the data directly to determine river yield.
d
) is available for short period but flow data of same
river at a u/s or d/s distant location (Q
L
Develop correlation between flow at the two sites Q
) is available for long period.
d
= F(Q
L
3- Historic flow record is available on the same river for long time period but for a
location at some distance u/s or d/s from the dam site (Q
).and then extend flow
record for dam site using the flow record of the u/s or d/s site and the derived
correlation.
S
A suitable catchment yield/runoff model or snow melt relationship is derived from Qs
and P record. The flow from the area intervening the measurement and dam site is
synthesized from the derived yield/runoff model for the intervening area, Q
). There is no
measurement record for the dam site. Historic rainfall (P) record is also
available for the catchment area.
I
=
F(A
I
,P
I
) The flow at dam site is determined from the flow record of the distant site
and the synthesized flow of the intervening area as: Q
d
= Q
S
Q
I
. The relationship
should preferably be verified from available record, if any. This procedure was used
for Kurram Tangi Dam.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-4
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
4 Short flow data at dam site and long rainfall data for the catchment area.
Develop P-Q relationship of the catchment area using the data for the period of flow
record. Extend the flow record for other period using the derived P-Q relationship and
the historic P data for the remaining period. This is done for monthly or annual basis.
In some cases rainfall record for dam catchment area is available for short time only
but long time rainfall record is available at a nearby site. Then correlate the rainfall
for the two sites on the basis of short time concurrent data and then use the rainfall
data of the nearby site to synthesis rainfall record for the dam site on the basis of
correlation. This method was used for generating long term flow synthesis for Mirani
Dam (NESPAK 1992).
5- Short flow record at dam site but a long flow record at a nearby river (Q
N
Develop a correlation between flow at the two sites for the period of overlapping
record as Q
)
having similar hydrologic conditions (rainfall, catchment hydrologic
characteristics, etc).
d
= F(Q
N
6. No flow data for the dam site river but satisfactory flow record for a nearby
basin (Q
). Then extend flow record for the dam site using the flow record
of the second river site and the derived correlation.
B
Develop P-Q relationship for the site having rainfall and flow record as Q
) of similar or different hydrologic characteristics in the region.
Precipitation data is available for the two sites/basins.
B
=
F(A
B
,P
B
). Due to similarity of hydrologic conditions in the two areas, the runoff
generation is expected to be similar. Thus use the derived P-Q relation using the
rainfall record for the dam site as Q
d
= F(A
d
,P
d
7 No flow record at dam site or nearby location. Rainfall data available at dam site
or a nearby location:
). In case the hydrologic conditions are
not same, then the underlying factors F in P-Q relationship may be modified in
consideration of hydrology characteristics of the two basins and the rainfall to account
for differing hydrologic conditions at the dam site. Small Dam
Determine flow at dam site using local or regional P-Q models as Q= F(P) to convert
monthly rainfall data to flow data. e.g. for small dam Jammergal Dam average
monthly flows Q (mm) were determined by Small Dams Organization (SDO, 1992)
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-5
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
using average monthly rainfall P (mm) for a nearby station (Jhelum city 20 miles from
dam site) as Q = 0.045 (P 20)
0.35
. A subsequent study based on the measured flow
and rainfall data at the dam site for the period 1991-1999 (Tariq 2000 and Tariq 2004)
showed that the regional model could produce better results if site-specific rainfall
data is used and using the same model or a modified models as Q = 0.046 (P - 10)
0.35
.
The rainfall- monthly runoff (Q, mm) at Gandiali dam was found from monthly
rainfall (P, mm) as Q = 0.00815 P + 0.001938 P
2
2.3.2 Stochastic Data Generation from Short Data:
on the basis of 1961-79 data, and the
long term monthly flow data was synthesized by the equation (Nespak 1988).
Stochastic principle may be used to generate long time data on the basis of short-term
data statistics (mean, variance, skewness, kurtosis). Various models used to extend data
include Auto-correlation (AR) models, Moving Average (MA) models, ARMA model,
ARIMA models, Seasonal/non-seasonal flow models (e.g. Thomas-Fierring). The generated
data have the same statistical properties as the original short term data. Seasonal models will
provide monthly flows, and Non-seasonal models will provide annual flows.
2.3.3 Flows Diverted From Other River
For a dam built on the active river (on channel), all river flows (small or large flows,
base flow, flood flow) will enter into the dam and hence is fully available for storage and
usage. Thus 10-d, monthly, yearly average flows volumes are meaningful.
When canals/feeder channels carry water from a river to an off-channel storage dam,
or from another river to the nearby dam, the amount of diverted water depends on the
feeder/canal capacity as well as on the instantaneous river flows. Then Q
diversion
equals
minimum of Q
river
, and Q
canal capacity
For Kaitu river the total flow in 1985 at Spinwam is 208 ThAF out of which 65 ThAF
is reserved for local and d/s uses and 143 ThAF is available for diversion. But only 122 ThAF
could be diverted to KT dam for a diversion channel of 1500 cfs capacity (1500 cfs = 1086
ThAF/annum) due to capacity limit of the diversion channel and/or river flow.
(Fig. 2.2). The diversion flow data is required on
continuous basis or with very short measurement interval e.g. 1 hour, particularly if discharge
variations in the feeder river are very rapid. Using average daily flow data will result in an
over estimate. Diverted flow statistics are subsequently determined.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-6
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Kaitu River Flows 1985
0
200
400
600
800
1000
1200
1400
1600
1800
2000
1
-
J
u
n
8
-
J
u
n
1
5
-
J
u
n
2
2
-
J
u
n
2
9
-
J
u
n
6
-
J
u
l
1
3
-
J
u
l
2
0
-
J
u
l
2
7
-
J
u
l
3
-
A
u
g
1
0
-
A
u
g
1
7
-
A
u
g
2
4
-
A
u
g
3
1
-
A
u
g
7
-
S
e
p
1
4
-
S
e
p
2
1
-
S
e
p
2
8
-
S
e
p
F
l
o
w

(
C
f
s
)
Total Flow available for
diversion
Actual diversion
Figure 2.2: Flow diversion from Kaitu River to KT dam.
2.3.4 Data Processing
Average flows for Storage Reservoir
Data is processed to determine river inflow volumes on 10-daily, monthly, and annual
basis. Determine average, standard deviations, skewness, minimum, and maximum flows on
10-daily, monthly and yearly basis, average annual flow, average monthly flow, etc (Table
2.1, Figs. 2.3 to 2.5).
Flow duration curve for hydropower projects
The flows for the run-of-the-river hydropower projects are shown in the form of flow
duration curve (FDC) which describes the exceedence probability for selected flow discharge.
The number of days (N
i
) when flow exceeded selected flow (Q
i
) is determined for each year
of record; this can be done by using spreadsheet function as: N
i
= COUNTIF(Range of data
cells,">Q
i
"). This is repeated for all discharge ranges with discharge increment of Q. The
percent exceedence is given as: P(QQ
i
) (%) = N
i
/N
i

100. A curve is drawn between Q (on
y-axis) and P(on x-axis). This procedure is explained in Tables 2.2 and 2.3 and the resulting
flow duration curve is shown in Fig. 2.6.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-7
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation

Table 2.1: Flows into Kurram Tangi Dam (Thousand acre feet).
Year Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Total
1971 29 22 17 31 25 35 93 89 25 18 21 36 441
1972 22 22 48 112 168 74 72 66 62 28 29 46 748
1973 39 40 84 125 83 41 274 127 59 49 27 32 979
1974 34 31 33 55 130 29 104 88 51 28 21 34 638
1975 32 30 50 83 102 80 50 166 96 29 26 38 781
1976 36 41 56 135 110 47 67 96 55 52 29 41 765
1977 37 30 24 93 56 30 98 55 35 37 28 36 559
1978 31 26 178 80 52 50 74 148 32 40 39 35 786
1979 34 50 85 136 111 55 85 205 57 53 41 42 955
1980 42 59 124 99 57 142 98 74 51 57 41 52 897
1981 73 43 145 145 131 56 134 91 56 52 41 48 1017
1982 73 43 134 139 135 57 127 89 56 52 41 47 993
1983 48 36 100 273 300 105 76 170 84 60 47 53 1350
1984 51 44 50 70 39 38 151 137 94 40 44 49 808
1985 49 35 34 91 26 26 54 92 34 35 25 40 541
1986 40 32 56 87 92 49 86 123 35 37 28 49 715
1987 40 30 153 74 132 68 84 52 46 41 27 34 781
1988 34 29 108 89 49 59 94 129 60 32 22 45 749
1989 42 24 63 91 70 43 97 96 36 34 23 34 654
1990 36 36 95 145 101 62 156 120 56 45 37 37 927
1991 44 45 107 206 259 115 120 111 74 50 40 47 1219
1992 50 54 83 216 246 140 117 142 85 59 47 55 1295
1993 54 40 153 152 122 91 149 81 76 53 39 46 1056
1994 48 51 73 103 88 36 122 63 68 67 41 52 813
1995 51 35 79 189 127 59 85 74 42 57 31 44 874
1996 45 40 71 70 110 147 83 129 39 69 29 33 865
1997 34 30 50 161 180 125 55 65 30 87 48 47 910
1998 52 86 215 265 160 60 97 94 111 64 40 48 1294
1999 64 82 60 33 30 17 71 100 58 39 36 33 621
2000 41 36 32 22 24 40 30 41 42 24 14 26 370
2001 27 17 30 38 17 56 81 61 40 15 13 18 414
Average 43 39 84 116 107 66 99 102 56 45 33 41 833
st dev 12 15 49 64 70 36 44 39 21 16 10 9 250
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-8
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Kurram Tangi Dam: Average Annual Synthesised Inflow (Th.AF)
4
4
1
7
4
8
9
7
9
6
3
8
7
8
1
7
6
5
5
5
9
7
8
6
9
5
5
8
9
7
1
0
1
7
9
9
3
1
3
5
0
8
0
8
5
4
1
7
1
57
8
1
7
4
9
6
5
4
9
2
7
1
2
1
9
1
2
9
5
1
0
5
6
8
1
38
7
4
8
6
5
9
1
0
1
2
9
4
6
2
1
3
7
0
4
1
4
8
3
3
0
100
200
300
400
500
600
700
800
900
1000
1100
1200
1300
1400
1
9
7
1
1
9
7
3
1
9
7
5
1
9
7
7
1
9
7
9
1
9
8
1
1
9
8
3
1
9
8
5
1
9
8
7
1
9
8
9
1
9
9
1
1
9
9
3
1
9
9
5
1
9
9
7
1
9
9
9
2
0
0
1
A
n
n
u
a
l

i
n
f
l
o
w

(
T
h
.
A
F
)
Average
Flows

Figure 2.3: Annual inflows into Kurram Tangi Dam.
Kurram Tangi Dam: Average Monthly Synthesised Inflow (Th.AF)
43
39
84
116
107
66
99
102
56
45
33
41
0
10
20
30
40
50
60
70
80
90
100
110
120
J
a
n
F
e
b
M
a
r
A
p
r
M
a
y
J
u
n
J
u
l
A
u
g
S
e
p
O
c
t
N
o
v
D
e
c
A
v
e
r
a
g
e

M
o
n
t
h
l
y

i
n
f
l
o
w

(
T
h
.
A
F
)

Figure 2.4: Average monthly inflows to Kurram Tangi Dam (1971-2001).
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-9
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Kurram Tangi Dam: 1971-2001 10-daily Synthesised Inflow (Th. AF)
0
20
40
60
80
100
120
140
J
a
n

0
1
-
1
0
,

7
1
J
a
n

0
1
-
1
0
,

7
3
J
a
n

0
1
-
1
0
,

7
5
J
a
n

0
1
-
1
0
,

7
7
J
a
n

0
1
-
1
0
,

7
9
J
a
n

0
1
-
1
0
,

8
1
J
a
n

0
1
-
1
0
,

8
3
J
a
n

0
1
-
1
0
,

8
5
J
a
n

0
1
-
1
0
,

8
7
J
a
n

0
1
-
1
0
,

8
9
J
a
n

0
1
-
1
0
,

9
1
J
a
n

0
1
-
1
0
,

9
3
J
a
n

0
1
-
1
0
,

9
5
J
a
n

0
1
-
1
0
,

9
7
J
a
n

0
1
-
1
0
,

9
9
J
a
n

0
1
-
1
0
,

0
1
Month,10-Day period and Year
1
0
-
d
a
y

K
T
D

i
n
f
l
o
w

(
T
h
.
A
F
)



Figure 2.5: Historic 10-day inflows to Kurram Tangi Dam site.

Golen Gol Hydro Power Project
Flow Duration Curve (1993-2006)
0
5
10
15
20
25
30
35
40
45
50
55
60
65
70
75
80
85
90
95
100
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 45 50 55 60 65 70 75 80 85 90 95 100
Exceedence Time (%)
D
i
s
c
h
a
r
g
e

(
m
3
/
s
e
c
)
Av 93-06
1993
1995
2004

Figure 2.6: Flow duration curve for Golen Gol Hydropower Project.

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-10
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Table 2.2: Flow duration analysis: Golen Gol River 1995.
GOLEN GOL: Historic daily discharge (m
3 Flow duration
analysis
/s) for 1995
Day J an. Feb. Mar. Apr. May J un. J ul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
Q
m
3
No. /s
%
Exced
1 5.6 6.0 5.0 4.6 5.6 11.4 46.4 58.7 46.5 23.4 15.1 5.8 4.56 365 100
2 5.7 6.0 5.1 4.6 6.1 13.2 48.6 54.9 45.5 23.1 13.8 5.9 5 332 91
3 5.9 5.9 5.2 4.7 6.3 12.8 49.4 58.0 43.0 22.8 12.5 6.0 10 180 49
4 6.1 5.8 5.2 4.7 6.5 12.0 49.3 59.7 43.1 22.5 11.3 6.0 15 150 41
5 6.2 5.8 5.4 4.7 6.7 13.1 50.9 57.4 42.5 22.0 10.4 6.1 20 128 35
6 6.3 5.7 5.4 4.8 7.1 16.9 56.1 60.6 41.7 21.3 9.4 6.2 25 112 31
7 6.5 5.6 5.5 4.8 7.6 19.5 61.7 60.8 41.7 21.1 8.5 6.2 30 103 28
8 6.5 5.6 5.5 4.9 8.1 23.6 59.9 58.8 39.5 20.7 8.3 6.1 35 96 26
9 6.4 5.5 5.4 4.9 8.6 30.1 59.3 55.9 38.8 20.6 8.2 6.0 40 89 24
10 6.4 5.5 5.3 5.0 9.8 33.2 61.8 56.3 37.6 20.5 8.0 6.1 45 67 18
11 6.3 5.4 5.3 5.0 10.6 38.7 63.6 56.7 37.1 20.3 7.9 6.1 50 55 15
12 6.3 5.4 5.1 5.0 11.8 41.9 63.1 59.7 36.2 20.0 7.8 6.0 55 47 13
13 6.3 5.4 5.0 5.0 13.1 43.7 61.1 61.9 35.6 19.8 7.5 6.0 60 26 7
14 6.2 5.3 5.0 5.0 13.0 42.7 59.9 61.2 34.0 19.6 7.3 5.9 65 5 1
15 6.2 5.3 4.8 5.1 13.2 42.9 60.9 61.0 33.2 19.5 7.2 5.9 70 4 1
16 6.2 5.3 4.9 5.0 13.6 44.0 61.4 58.5 32.6 19.7 7.1 5.9 75 3 1
17 6.3 5.3 4.8 5.1 13.9 46.0 59.3 57.6 31.7 19.4 6.9 5.9 80 3 1
18 6.2 5.4 4.8 5.1 13.1 45.9 60.6 57.7 30.6 19.5 6.8 5.9 85 3 1
19 6.2 5.4 4.7 5.1 12.4 43.1 61.3 57.9 29.4 19.3 6.6 5.8 90 3 1
20 6.2 5.3 4.7 5.1 12.2 43.2 61.6 58.7 28.0 19.0 6.5 5.8 95 1 0
21 6.3 5.4 4.7 5.2 12.1 43.6 62.5 55.2 27.0 18.9 6.5 5.8 100 0 0
22 6.3 5.4 4.7 5.4 12.0 41.9 62.5 53.7 26.6 18.8 6.5 5.7
23 6.2 5.3 4.7 5.4 11.7 42.5 65.2 52.7 26.2 18.7 6.3 5.7

24 6.3 5.3 4.7 5.4 11.8 42.5 92.6 51.2 25.9 18.6 6.3 5.7
25 6.2 5.2 4.7 5.4 11.9 42.8 96.8 53.6 25.5 18.4 6.2 5.7

26 6.3 5.1 4.8 5.6 11.6 44.6 93.8 52.1 25.4 18.3 6.1 5.7
27 6.3 5.0 4.7 5.7 11.4 44.2 72.8 55.1 25.2 17.9 6.0 5.7

28 6.3 5.0 4.7 5.7 11.3 43.8 62.1 53.0 24.6 17.4 6.0 5.7
29 6.2 4.6 5.7 11.2 43.0 63.0 49.6 24.4 17.0 5.9 5.6
30 6.2 4.6 5.5 11.3 42.8 62.9 47.2 24.1 16.8 5.8 5.6

31 6.2 4.6 11.2 45.6 62.6 45.1 16.5 5.56.
Av-1 6.2
st
5.7 5.3 4.8 7.2 18.6 54.4 58.1 42.0 21.8 10.5 6.0
Av 2 6.2
nd
5.4 4.9 5.0 12.7 43.2 61.3 59.1 32.8 19.6 7.2 5.9
Av 3 6.2
rd
5.2 4.7 5.5 11.6 43.4 72.4 51.7 25.5 17.9 6.2 5.7
Av mnth 6.2 5.4 5.0 5.1 10.5 35.3 63.0 56.1 33.4 19.7 8.0 5.9


Table 2.3: Result of flow duration analysis: Golen Gol River 1993-2005.
Flow 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999
m
3
No /s % No % No % No % No % No % No %
0 364 100 365 100 365 100 365 100 365 100 365 100 365 100
5 331 91 365 100 332 91 364 100 365 100 334 92 365 100
10 223 61 159 44 180 49 188 52 187 51 224 61 250 68
15 156 43 122 33 150 41 129 35 132 36 149 41 139 38
20 130 36 112 31 128 35 109 30 116 32 93 25 117 32
25 96 26 83 23 112 31 86 24 85 23 68 19 105 29
30 86 24 79 22 103 28 76 21 61 17 23 6 92 25
35 64 18 72 20 96 26 63 17 54 15 9 2 69 19
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-11
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
40 45 12 68 19 89 24 46 13 27 7 1 0 7 2
45 32 9 48 13 67 18 25 7 14 4 0 0 0 0
50 15 4 43 12 55 15 3 1 7 2 0 0 0 0
55 2 1 30 8 47 13 0 0 2 1 0 0 0 0
60 0 0 15 4 26 7 0 0 2 1 0 0 0 0
65 0 0 5 1 5 1 0 0 2 1 0 0 0 0
70 0 0 4 1 4 1 0 0 2 1 0 0 0 0
75 0 0 2 1 3 1 0 0 2 1 0 0 0 0
80 0 0 1 0 3 1 0 0 2 1 0 0 0 0
85 0 0 1 0 3 1 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0
90 0 0 1 0 3 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
95 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
100 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Flow 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 Total
m
3
No /s % No % No % No % No % No % No %
0 366 100 365 100 365 100 364 100 365 100 365 100 4744 100
5 366 100 365 100 365 100 298 82 363 99 361 99 4574 96
10 161 44 190 52 167 46 155 43 161 44 228 62 2473 52
15 115 31 72 20 107 29 105 29 101 28 128 35 1605 34
20 69 19 7 2 53 15 80 22 56 15 98 27 1168 25
25 3 1 1 0 19 5 55 15 16 4 74 20 803 17
30 0 0 0 0 11 3 31 9 0 0 57 16 619 13
35 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 48 13 476 10
40 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 38 10 321 7
45 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 16 4 202 4
50 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 8 2 131 3
55 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 1 84 2
60 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 1 45 1
65 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 13 0
70 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 10 0
75 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 7 0
80 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 6 0
85 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 5 0
90 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 4 0
95 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 0
100 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

2.3.5 Dependable Yield
Most often the water requirements for agriculture and other purposes are very
enormous and all river flows could be used for economic gains. However it is needed that
scale of demand be selected such that the projected or design demand must be met adequately
in most years. Else the scale of infrastructure development will remain underutilized for large
proportion of time. The annual dependable yield is determined from the historic or
synthesized data on annual/ seasonal basis. Since actual flows of river can vary considerably
over the days and may not be utilized without a storage dam of suitable capacity. The
dependable yield sets the maximum usable potential of water from the river system. Thus the
project demand is tailored to match the dependable yield. Following procedure is followed to
determine the dependable yield.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-12
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Arrange annual flow volume data of N years in descending order
Assign serial number n (n = 1 to N)
Dependability (p%) of nthe discharge event = n/(N+1) * 100
For pre-selected dependability P%, find m
th
value where m = (N+1) * P/100. Read the
m
th
This procedure is valid for a seasonal storage only where volume stored in one season
is released in next irrigation season within one water cycle of one year.
flow value and is P% dependable yield of the river.
For a large size carry over dam dependable flow equals the average flow over a
couple of years since storage reservoir will considerably alter the outflow volumes.
Example 2.1:
The annual synthesized inflow of Kurram and Kaitu Rivers into the Kurram Tangi
dam is given in Table 2.4 (average annual inflow to the dam is 833 Th.AF). Determine the
dependable yield with and without dam.
Solution:
The dependability of different flows is determined in Table 2.4 and shown in Figure
2.7. From the Table and Figure it is seen that 50, 60, 70, 80 90 and 95% dependable yield of
the river without the dam is as 810, 775, 745, 630, 460, and 400 ThAF per annum,
respectively. Construction of the dam will increase the dependable yield at 90% level from
460 ThAF to as 795 ThAF per annum with dam of 600 ThAF live storage capacity and as 785
ThAF with dam of 550 ThAF live storage capacity (Table 2.6 and Figs. 2.18 for
dependability analysis with dam). The dependability of 795 ThAF without dam is about 52%
only.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-13
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation

Table 2.4: Dependable flow of Kurram and Kaitu Rivers into Kurram Tangi Dam.
A: Historic flow data (ThAF)
B: Data arranged in descending order
Year
Kurram R Kaitu River Total Year Flow (ThAF) Order
No (n)
Dependability
P (%)
1971 362 79 441

1983 1,350 1 3.13
1972 663 86 748

1992 1,295 2 6.25
1973 814 165 979

1998 1,294 3 9.38
1974 508 130 638

1991 1,219 4 12.50
1975 644 137 781

1993 1,056 5 15.63
1976 617 147 765

1981 1,017 6 18.75
1977 481 78 559

1982 993 7 21.88
1978 661 125 786

1973 979 8 25.00
1979 753 203 955

1979 955 9 28.13
1980 713 183 897

1990 927 10 31.25
1981 761 256 1,017

1997 910 11 34.38
1982 664 329 993

1980 897 12 37.50
1983 1,083 267 1,350

1995 874 13 40.63
1984 625 183 808

1996 865 14 43.75
1985 419 122 541

1994 813 15 46.88
1986 589 125 715

1984 808 16 50.00
1987 598 183 781

1978 786 17 53.13
1988 573 177 749

1987 781 18 56.25
1989 490 164 654

1975 781 19 59.38
1990 608 319 927

1976 765 20 62.50
1991 872 346 1,219

1988 749 21 65.63
1992 882 413 1,295

1972 748 22 68.75
1993 749 307 1,056

1986 715 23 71.88
1994 577 236 813

1989 654 24 75.00
1995 601 273 874

1974 638 25 78.13
1996 670 194 865

1999 621 26 81.25
1997 605 305 910

1977 559 27 84.38
1998 865 429 1,294

1985 541 28 87.50
1999 426 195 621

1971 441 29 90.63
2000 279 91 370

2001 414 30 93.75
2001 306 108 414

2000 370 31 96.88
Average 628 205 833

P(%) = n/32*100


TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-14
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Inflows to Kurram Tangi Dam from Kurram and Kaitu Rivers
0
5
10
15
20
25
30
35
40
45
50
55
60
65
70
75
80
85
90
95
100
300 400 500 600 700 800 900 1,000 1,100 1,200 1,300 1,400
Annual Deprndable Flow (ThAF)
D
e
p
e
n
d
a
b
i
l
i
t
y

/

e
x
c
e
e
d
a
n
c
e

(
%
)

Figure 2.7: Dependable flow/yield of Kurram River without dam at KT dam site.

2.4 RESERVOIR LIVE STORAGE CAPACITY
The inflows into the dam (Q) and releases (R) from the dam to meet the planned
demand (D) vary over time (Fig. 2.8); during some months Q < D and for other period Q > D.
Water goes into storage when Q > D and is later released from storage when Q < D. Ripple
Mass Curve of inflows vs demand determines the required live storage capacity for a dam to
meet the target demand adequately over extended service period.
2.4.1 Ripple Mass Curve Analysis
Ripple mass curve compares the cumulative inflows vs. the cumulative demand over a
period of time. A hypothetical reservoir of capacity S is considered to be full at some time
after which any deficit (deficit = demand D flows Q) is met out of the storage. The storage
S required to avert any deficit during the year must be equal to maximum deficit in the year.
The required storage S is determined for each year. The storage S for a reservoir is selected to
ensure averting of deficits in most or all years depending upon the purpose of the storage.
Following procedure is followed.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-15
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Arrange flow (Historic or synthesized data) and demand data for each time period
(10-day or month). The flow data may vary over the years but the demand remains
almost same for all years. The demand may vary over the months (as for irrigation
purposes) or remain constant (as for hydropower development).
Select apex point P where the reservoir is most likely to be filled up at this point (flow
condition changes from Q > D to Q < D) and start depleting subsequently. Apex point
may be determined by comparing inflows and demand over the years and select a
common time point such that at apex Q D and later Q < D and extra demand is met
out of storage creating a storage deficit (Fig. 2.8)
Apex point may also be determined by drawing a tangent line to accumulated inflow
line (dQ/dt) and selecting a point where (dQ/dt) is largest and start decreasing
subsequently (Fig 2.9).
Determine accumulated flow Q and demand D. Plot accumulated flow discharge
against time (Figure 2.9).
Superimpose accumulated demand D starting at point P (Fig. 2.10).
KT Dam: River inflows vs. Demand
0
10
20
30
40
50
60
J
a
n

0
1
-
1
0
,
7
1
M
a
r

0
1
-
1
0
M
a
y

0
1
-
1
0
J
u
l

0
1
-
1
0
S
e
p

0
1
-
1
0
N
o
v

0
1
-
1
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
2
M
a
r

0
1
-
1
0
M
a
y

0
1
-
1
0
J
u
l

0
1
-
1
0
S
e
p

0
1
-
1
0
N
o
v

0
1
-
1
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
3
I
n
f
l
o
w

(
T
h
A
F
)
Flows
Demand
P
P

Figure 2.8: Inflows vs Demand for apex point P.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-16
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
KT Dam: Commulative Inflow
0
200
400
600
800
1000
1200
1400
J
a
n

0
1
-
1
0
,
7
1
F
e
b

0
1
-
1
0
M
a
r

0
1
-
1
0
A
p
r

0
1
-
1
0
M
a
y

0
1
-
1
0
J
u
n

0
1
-
1
0
J
u
l

0
1
-
1
0
A
u
g

0
1
-
1
0
S
e
p

0
1
-
1
0
O
c
t

0
1
-
1
0
N
o
v

0
1
-
1
0
D
e
c

0
1
-
1
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
2
F
e
b

0
1
-
1
0
M
a
r

0
1
-
1
0
A
p
r

0
1
-
1
0
M
a
y

0
1
-
1
0
J
u
n

0
1
-
1
0
J
u
l

0
1
-
1
0
A
u
g

0
1
-
1
0
S
e
p

0
1
-
1
0
O
c
t

0
1
-
1
0
N
o
v

0
1
-
1
0
D
e
c

0
1
-
1
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
3
I
n
f
l
o
w

(
T
h
A
F
)
P
P

Figure 2.9: Cumulative inflows for apex point P.

KT Dam: Commulative Inflow
0
200
400
600
800
1000
1200
J
u
l

0
1
-
1
0
A
u
g

0
1
-
1
0
S
e
p

0
1
-
1
0
O
c
t

0
1
-
1
0
N
o
v

0
1
-
1
0
D
e
c

0
1
-
1
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
2
F
e
b

0
1
-
1
0
M
a
r

0
1
-
1
0
A
p
r

0
1
-
1
0
M
a
y

0
1
-
1
0
J
u
n

0
1
-
1
0
J
u
l

0
1
-
1
0
A
u
g

0
1
-
1
0
S
e
p

0
1
-
1
0
O
c
t

0
1
-
1
0
N
o
v

0
1
-
1
0
D
e
c

0
1
-
1
0
I
n
f
l
o
w

(
T
h
A
F
)
P
P
D1
D2
D3
S1
S2
S3

Figure 2.10: Cumulative flow and cumulative demand curves and required storage.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-17
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
For small demand the D curve will meet the Q curve before next apex point P. This
ensures that reservoir will become full at this time of the year. For large demand the
cumulative demand curve may meet the cumulative flow curve after more than 1 year
(Fig. 2.10).
Determine supply deficit for each year as the maximum difference between supply
Q and demand D curves. This gives required storage for each year corresponding
to the demand. Thus for Fig. 2.10 the required storage to ensure meeting of demand in
the year is S1, S2, and S3 for demands D1, D2, and D3, respectively.
For large demand, the reservoir may not become full at end of each water year
(example demand D3 in Fig. 2.10). This represents condition for a carry over dam.
In case demand varies during the year, use appropriate data to determine accumulative
demand and deficit for each flow period (Fig. 2.11).
Analysis is started from a time when reservoir is most likely to be full (e.g. by 1
st
Determine maximum deficit and the required storage S for each year of analysis.

Sept.) each year depending upon average flow pattern of the particular river.
The calculated storage requirements represent live storage for the particular purpose
e.g. irrigation.
Determine the required reservoir capacity that will ensure supplies for some selected
level by the probability procedure of Section 2.4.3 (also Table 2.6).
2.4.2 Ripple Mass Curve Analysis Using Spreadsheet
The reservoir storage space may be determined conveniently by using a spreadsheet (e.g.
Excel) as under (Table 2.5).
1. Arrange data in columns (time, Q, D) for all years. The flow and demand may be
available on 10-daily basis or on monthly basis.
2. Start the analysis at latest apex point P (e.g. 1
st
3. Determine storage deficit SD for subsequent periods as:
Sept.) when dam may be considered
full every year.
SD
t
= MAX [{(D
t
-Q
t
)+SD
t-1
4. Draw graph between time and storage deficit. (Fig. 2.11)
}, 0]
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-18
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
5. Seasonal dams become full and the storage deficit becomes zero on or before the next
apex time of 1
st
6. Determine largest value of the storage deficit SD for each water year of the analysis
period. This is the required live storage for that year (Fig. 2.12).
Sep. The carryover dams become full after more than one year and
the storage deficit remain non-zero for few years in a row (Fig. 2.11).
7. Determine the required reservoir capacity that will ensure supplies for some selected
probability level by the probability procedure.
8. The deficit for Kurram Tangi Dam is shown in Figs. 2.13 for different annual
demands 785, 700, 600, 500 ThAF (+ 20 ThAF as annual evaporation losses from
reservoir surface), and varies considerably. Thus required storage capacity depends on
the target annual demand.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-19
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Table 2.5 KTD: Mass curve of inflows Q, demand D, Storage deficit SD and Maximum
storage deficit in the water year SD
mx
#
(All values in ThAF)
Period Q D SD SD
mx


Annual CWR = 785, System losses = 20,
Total annual Demand = 805
1
Jan 01-10,71
9.8 10.39
2 J an 11-20 9.8 11.56
3 J an 21-31 9.7 14.49
4 Feb 01-10 7.8 15.07
5 Feb 11-20 7.8 19.27
6 Feb 21-28 6.7 24.81
7 Mar 01-10 7.8 17.23
8 Mar 11-20 4.5 23.94
9 Mar 21-31 5.2 28.65
10 Apr 01-10 5.6 31.74
11 Apr 11-20 7.1 28.85
12 Apr 21-30 18.4 18.35
13 May 01-10 6.9 24.22
14 May 11-20 8.6 26.74
15 May 21-31 9.5 28.87
16 J un 01-10 14.5 17.18
17 J un 11-20 14.2 19.36
18 J un 21-30 5.8 23.93
19 J ul 01-10 24.6 25.72
20 J ul 11-20 15.7 20.35
21 J ul 21-31 52.4 19.49
22 Aug 01-10 43.4 14.75
23 Aug 11-20 24.5 17.26
24 Aug 21-31 21.2 27.12 0
25 Sep 01-10 13.7 31.25 18
26 Sep 11-20 8.1 30.88 40
27 Sep 21-30 3.2 31.42 68
28 Oct 01-10 5.0 31.01 95
29 Oct 11-20 7.0 30.77 118
30 Oct 21-31 5.7 31.75 144
31 Nov 01-10 6.4 34.62 172
32 Nov 11-20 6.6 33.83 200
33 Nov 21-30 7.7 18.93 211
34 Dec 01-10 11.1 6.94 207
35 Dec 11-20 11.5 7.24 202
36 Dec 21-31 13.0 6.79 196
37
Jan 1-10,72
6.0 10.39 201 277
38 J an 11-20 6.7 11.56 205
39 J an 21-31 9.0 14.49 211
40 Feb 01-10 7.2 15.07 219
41 Feb 11-20 8.1 19.27 230
42 Feb 21-28 6.6 24.81 248
43 Mar 01-10 7.9 17.23 258
44 Mar 11-20 15.3 23.94 266
45 Mar 21-31 25.0 28.65 270
# Period Q D SD SD
mx

46 Apr 01-10 27.1 31.74 274
47 Apr 11-20 26.4 28.85 277
48 Apr 21-30 58.2 18.35 237
49 May 01-10 97.7 24.22 164
50 May 11-20 38.7 26.74 152
51 May 21-31 31.3 28.87 149
52 J un 01-10 18.5 17.18 148
53 J un 11-20 12.3 19.36 155
54 J un 21-30 43.6 23.93 135
55 J ul 01-10 32.6 25.72 128
56 J ul 11-20 11.9 20.35 137
57 J ul 21-31 27.4 19.49 129
58 Aug 01-10 23.3 14.75 120
59 Aug 11-20 24.0 17.26 114
60 Aug 21-31 18.5 27.12 122
61 Sep 01-10 4.6 31.25 149
62 Sep 11-20 41.8 30.88 138
63 Sep 21-30 15.3 30.88 154
64 Oct 01-10 8.9 30.47 175
65 Oct 11-20 8.4 30.23 197
66 Oct 21-31 10.6 31.15 218
67 Nov 01-10 7.5 34.00 244
68 Nov 11-20 6.8 33.21 270
69 Nov 21-30 14.8 18.65 274
70 Dec 01-10 17.1 6.81 264
71 Dec 11-20 14.0 7.11 257
72 Dec 21-31 15.0 6.67 249
73
Jan 1-10,73
13.9 10.20 245 274
74 J an 11-20 12.8 11.35 244
75 J an 21-31 12.2 14.21 245
76 Feb 01-10 11.4 14.79 249
77 Feb 11-20 9.9 18.90 258
78 Feb 21-28 18.4 24.40 264
79 Mar 01-10 33.1 16.91 248
80 Mar 11-20 19.8 23.50 251
81 Mar 21-31 31.2 28.12 248
82 Apr 01-10 47.8 31.16 232
83 Apr 11-20 48.6 28.33 211
84 Apr 21-30 28.8 18.02 201
85 May 01-10 26.4 23.79 198
86 May 11-20 31.7 26.29 193
87 May 21-31 25.0 28.38 196
88 J un 01-10 14.5 16.92 199
89 J un 11-20 9.4 19.08 208
90 J un 21-30 16.8 23.56 215
91 J ul 01-10 101.5 25.35 139
92 J ul 11-20 65.2 20.04 94
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-20
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
# Period Q D SD SD
mx

93 J ul 21-31 107.2 19.16 6
94 Aug 01-10 65.9 14.54 0
95 Aug 11-20 27.6 17.00 0
96 Aug 21-31 33.3 26.66 0
97 Sep 01-10 19.5 30.72 11
98 Sep 11-20 10.7 30.34 31
99 Sep 21-30 29.2 30.88 33
100 Oct 01-10 19.9 30.47 43
101 Oct 11-20 16.3 30.23 57
102 Oct 21-31 12.9 31.15 75
103 Nov 01-10 9.3 34.00 100
104 Nov 11-20 8.4 33.21 125
105 Nov 21-30 9.4 18.65 134
106 Dec 01-10 10.4 6.81 130
107 Dec 11-20 9.9 7.11 128
108 Dec 21-31 11.3 6.67 123
109
Jan 1-10,74
9.7 10.20 124 221
110 J an 11-20 9.8 11.35 125
111 J an 21-31 14.7 14.21 125
112 Feb 01-10 10.6 14.79 129
113 Feb 11-20 10.6 18.90 137
114 Feb 21-28 9.8 24.40 152
115 Mar 01-10 10.4 16.91 158
116 Mar 11-20 7.3 23.50 174
117 Mar 21-31 15.1 28.12 187
118 Apr 01-10 28.8 31.16 190
119 Apr 11-20 16.6 28.33 202
120 Apr 21-30 9.7 18.02 210
121 May 01-10 13.1 23.79 221
122 May 11-20 81.1 26.29 166
123 May 21-31 36.0 28.38 158
124 J un 01-10 9.1 16.92 166
125 J un 11-20 8.2 19.08 177
126 J un 21-30 11.2 23.56 189
127 J ul 01-10 18.3 25.35 196
128 J ul 11-20 33.5 20.04 183
129 J ul 21-31 52.2 19.16 150
130 Aug 01-10 52.1 14.54 112
131 Aug 11-20 16.6 17.00 112
132 Aug 21-31 19.8 26.66 119
133 Sep 01-10 17.3 30.72 133
134 Sep 11-20 7.2 30.34 156
135 Sep 21-30 26.3 30.88 160
136 Oct 01-10 11.2 30.47 180
137 Oct 11-20 8.2 30.23 202
138 Oct 21-31 8.4 31.15 225
139 Nov 01-10 6.4 34.00 252
140 Nov 11-20 6.6 33.21 279
141 Nov 21-30 7.7 18.65 290
142 Dec 01-10 11.1 6.81 285
# Period Q D SD SD
mx

143 Dec 11-20 10.7 7.11 282
144 Dec 21-31 12.6 6.67 276
145
Jan 1-10,75
11.6 10.20 274 335
146 J an 11-20 9.8 11.35 276
147 J an 21-31 10.2 14.21 280
148 Feb 01-10 10.9 14.79 284
149 Feb 11-20 12.1 18.90 291
150 Feb 21-28 6.9 24.40 308
151 Mar 01-10 11.9 16.91 313
152 Mar 11-20 11.3 23.50 325
153 Mar 21-31 26.6 28.12 327
154 Apr 01-10 28.6 31.16 330
155 Apr 11-20 22.5 28.33 335
156 Apr 21-30 32.3 18.02 321
157 May 01-10 37.6 23.79 307
158 May 11-20 43.4 26.29 290
159 May 21-31 20.7 28.38 298
160 J un 01-10 16.1 16.92 299
161 J un 11-20 35.3 19.08 282
162 J un 21-30 28.8 23.56 277
163 J ul 01-10 14.5 25.35 288
164 J ul 11-20 19.0 20.04 289
165 J ul 21-31 16.1 19.16 292
166 Aug 01-10 29.1 14.54 277
167 Aug 11-20 68.3 17.00 226
168 Aug 21-31 69.0 26.66 184
169 Sep 01-10 42.0 30.72 173
170 Sep 11-20 14.3 30.34 189
171 Sep 21-30 39.4 30.88 180
172 Oct 01-10 9.7 30.47 201
173 Oct 11-20 10.6 30.23 221
174 Oct 21-31 8.5 31.15 243
175 Nov 01-10 7.8 34.00 269
176 Nov 11-20 7.8 33.21 295
177 Nov 21-30 10.0 18.65 303
178 Dec 01-10 13.2 6.81 297
179 Dec 11-20 11.9 7.11 292
180 Dec 21-31 13.1 6.67 286
181
Jan 1-10,76
10.2 10.20 286 315
182 J an 11-20 10.3 11.35 287
183 J an 21-31 15.8 14.21 285
184 Feb 01-10 13.0 14.79 287
185 Feb 11-20 15.7 18.90 290
186 Feb 21-28 11.9 24.40 303
187 Mar 01-10 12.9 16.91 307
188 Mar 11-20 21.2 23.50 309
189 Mar 21-31 22.0 28.12 315
190 Apr 01-10 38.8 31.16 307
191 Apr 11-20 29.1 28.33 307
192 Apr 21-30 67.4 18.02 257
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-21
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
# Period Q D SD SD
mx

193 May 01-10 38.3 23.79 243
194 May 11-20 33.5 26.29 236
195 May 21-31 37.8 28.38 226
196 J un 01-10 21.5 16.92 222
197 J un 11-20 16.1 19.08 225
198 J un 21-30 9.5 23.56 239
199 J ul 01-10 6.7 25.35 257
200 J ul 11-20 24.6 20.04 253
201 J ul 21-31 35.3 19.16 237
202 Aug 01-10 8.2 14.54 243
203 Aug 11-20 63.1 17.00 197
204 Aug 21-31 24.8 26.66 199
205 Sep 01-10 21.6 30.72 208
206 Sep 11-20 25.6 30.34 213
207 Sep 21-30 8.1 30.88 235
208 Oct 01-10 26.6 30.47 239
209 Oct 11-20 12.2 30.23 257
210 Oct 21-31 13.4 31.15 275
211 Nov 01-10 9.6 34.00 299
212 Nov 11-20 8.5 33.21 324
213 Nov 21-30 10.8 18.65 332
214 Dec 01-10 12.1 6.81 327
215 Dec 11-20 15.2 7.11 319
216 Dec 21-31 13.3 6.67 312
217
Jan 1-10,77
11.8 10.20 310 434
218 J an 11-20 11.8 11.35 310
219 J an 21-31 13.3 14.21 311
220 Feb 01-10 11.2 14.79 314
221 Feb 11-20 11.5 18.90 322
222 Feb 21-28 7.4 24.40 339
223 Mar 01-10 9.0 16.91 347
224 Mar 11-20 6.7 23.50 363
225 Mar 21-31 8.2 28.12 383
226 Apr 01-10 41.3 31.16 373
227 Apr 11-20 33.6 28.33 368
228 Apr 21-30 18.1 18.02 368
229 May 01-10 16.9 23.79 375
230 May 11-20 17.6 26.29 383
231 May 21-31 21.0 28.38 391
232 J un 01-10 9.7 16.92 398
233 J un 11-20 8.1 19.08 409
234 J un 21-30 12.5 23.56 420
235 J ul 01-10 11.8 25.35 434
236 J ul 11-20 50.6 20.04 403
237 J ul 21-31 36.0 19.16 386
238 Aug 01-10 32.4 14.54 368
239 Aug 11-20 6.5 17.00 379
240 Aug 21-31 15.8 26.66 390
241 Sep 01-10 22.6 30.72 398
# Period Q D SD SD
mx

242 Sep 11-20 4.6 30.34 424
243 Sep 21-30 7.6 30.88 447
244 Oct 01-10 12.1 30.47 465
245 Oct 11-20 16.5 30.23 479
246 Oct 21-31 8.8 31.15 501
247 Nov 01-10 6.9 34.00 528
248 Nov 11-20 9.5 33.21 552
249 Nov 21-30 11.6 18.65 559
250 Dec 01-10 12.0 6.81 554
251 Dec 11-20 11.4 7.11 550
252 Dec 21-31 12.9 6.67 544
253
Jan 1-10,78
10.7 10.20 543 580
254 J an 11-20 10.2 11.35 544
255 J an 21-31 10.3 14.21 548
256 Feb 01-10 9.0 14.79 554
257 Feb 11-20 9.4 18.90 563
258 Feb 21-28 8.0 24.40 580
259 Mar 01-10 16.8 16.91 580
260 Mar 11-20 139.6 23.50 464
261 Mar 21-31 21.8 28.12 470
262 Apr 01-10 20.6 31.16 481
263 Apr 11-20 29.8 28.33 479
264 Apr 21-30 29.4 18.02 468
265 May 01-10 23.5 23.79 468
266 May 11-20 15.0 26.29 479
267 May 21-31 13.8 28.38 494
268 J un 01-10 9.0 16.92 502
269 J un 11-20 21.2 19.08 500
270 J un 21-30 20.2 23.56 503
271 J ul 01-10 32.3 25.35 496
272 J ul 11-20 20.3 20.04 496
273 J ul 21-31 21.1 19.16 494
274 Aug 01-10 31.1 14.54 477
275 Aug 11-20 69.2 17.00 425
276 Aug 21-31 47.6 26.66 404
277 Sep 01-10 5.9 30.72 429
278 Sep 11-20 8.1 30.34 451
279 Sep 21-30 17.9 30.88 464
280 Oct 01-10 21.5 30.47 473
281 Oct 11-20 9.6 30.23 494
282 Oct 21-31 9.1 31.15 516
283 Nov 01-10 16.7 34.00 533
284 Nov 11-20 11.0 33.21 555
285 Nov 21-30 11.2 18.65 563
286 Dec 01-10 11.7 6.81 558
287 Dec 11-20 11.0 7.11 554
288 Dec 21-31 12.4 6.67 548
289
Jan 1-10,79
10.7 10.20 548 565
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-22
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
KT Dam: Ripple Mass Curve Analysis, 1984-1992
137
208
372
427
439
502
613
467
105
0
100
200
300
400
500
600
700
800
S
e
p

0
1
-
1
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
4
M
a
y

0
1
-
1
0
S
e
p

0
1
-
1
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
5
M
a
y

0
1
-
1
0
S
e
p

0
1
-
1
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
6
M
a
y

0
1
-
1
0
S
e
p

0
1
-
1
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
7
M
a
y

0
1
-
1
0
S
e
p

0
1
-
1
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
8
M
a
y

0
1
-
1
0
S
e
p

0
1
-
1
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
9
M
a
y

0
1
-
1
0
S
e
p

0
1
-
1
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
0
M
a
y

0
1
-
1
0
S
e
p

0
1
-
1
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
1
M
a
y

0
1
-
1
0
S
e
p

0
1
-
1
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
2
M
a
y

0
1
-
1
0
S
e
p

0
1
-
1
0
S
t
o
r
a
g
e

D
e
f
i
c
i
t

(
T
h
A
F
)
0
1000
2000
3000
4000
5000
6000
7000
8000
C
o
m
m
u
l
a
t
i
v
e

I
n
f
l
o
w
s

a
n
d

D
e
m
a
n
d

(
T
h
A
F
)
Max defict in the water

Commulative
Inflows
Commulative
Demand

Figure 2.11: Deficits for Kurram Tangi dam (1984-1992).
KTD: Annual Storage Deficit
2
7
7
2
7
4
2
2
1
3
3
5
3
1
5
4
3
4
5
8
0
5
6
5
4
0
5
3
1
0
1
3
2
1
3
2
1
3
7
2
0
8
3
7
2
4
2
7
4
3
9
5
0
2
6
1
3
4
6
7
1
0
5
8
8
1
0
7
9
3
1
4
6
1
6
9
1
0
8
1
6
6
4
6
5
0
100
200
300
400
500
600
700
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
0
0
A
n
n
u
a
l

S
t
o
r
a
g
e

D
e
f
i
c
i
t

(
T
h
A
F
)

Figure 2.12: KTD-Annual max deficit for annual demand of 785+20=805 ThAF.

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-23
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation

KTD: Deficit Curve, Demand = 785 + 20 = 805 ThAF
2
7
7
2
7
4
2
2
1
3
3
5
3
1
5
4
3
4
5
8
0
5
6
5
4
0
5
3
1
0
1
3
2
1
3
2
1
3
7
2
0
8
3
7
2
4
2
7
4
3
9
5
0
2
6
1
3
4
6
7
1
0
5
8
81
0
7
9
3
1
4
61
6
9
1
0
8
1
6
6
4
6
5
0
100
200
300
400
500
600
700
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
0
0
S
t
o
r
a
g
e

D
e
f
i
c
i
t

T
h
A
F

KTD: Deficit Curve, Demand = 700 + 20 = 720 ThAF
2
2
2
1
6
4
1
7
0
2
1
8
1
3
7
1
7
2
2
7
5
1
9
8
9
41
0
1
1
0
5
1
0
6
8
3
1
4
9
2
5
8
2
6
3
1
9
4
1
7
3
2
2
5
1
0
8
8
1
6
98
3
6
9
1
1
6
1
2
8
8
0
1
3
9
3
5
9
0
100
200
300
400
500
600
700
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
0
0
S
t
o
r
a
g
e

D
e
f
i
c
i
t

T
h
A
F

KTD: Deficit Curve, Demand = 600 + 20 = 620 ThAF
1
6
6
9
5
1
0
0
1
1
4
8
4
8
6
1
3
1
1
0
0
6
0
6
4
6
8
6
8
3
9
7
3
1
2
7
1
1
3
1
0
2
9
9
1
1
8
7
4
4
9
4
55
3
3
8
8
1
7
4
4
6
1
0
4
2
1
2
0
100
200
300
400
500
600
700
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
0
0
S
t
o
r
a
g
e

D
e
f
i
c
i
t

T
h
A
F

KTD: Deficit Curve, Demand = 500 + 20 = 520 ThAF
1
1
3
6
7
4
1
7
7
6
2
4
7
8
3
6
6
3
1
2
8
3
1
3
2
1
9
5
0
8
3
7
7
6
57
28
4
4
3
2
7
2
12
8
1
7
4
7
3
9
3
1
7
1
9
9
0
100
200
300
400
500
600
700
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
0
0
S
t
o
r
a
g
e

D
e
f
i
c
i
t

T
h
A
F

Figure 2.13: KTD- Deficit for annual irrigation demand of 785, 700, 600 and 500 ThAF
(1971-2000).
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-24
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
2.4.3: Required Storage Capacity
Storage may be provided to meet the maximum deficit determined during the period
of analysis. This is true when 100% dependable supplies are required for the purposes, e.g.
domestic water supply. For other cases, as for irrigation, providing large enough storage to
satisfy all deficits may be too costly and that some shortage could not be averted at all and
thus may be accepted during few years. In that case storage is provided for selected
probability level in concordance with the scope of water delivery, e.g. 80 to 90% for
irrigation, 50 to 80% for hydropower, etc. Following procedure is followed to determine the
storage required to avert deficits for selected probability levels (Table 2.6).
Determine the yearly maximum deficit for N years from Ripple curve analysis for
known inflows and selected annual demand. The storage required to meet all deficit in
any year equals the maximum deficit of that year. Thus if in the beginning of any year
the storage is available equal to or more than the maximum deficit in that year, all the
deficit in the year will be met out of the storage.
Arrange yearly required storage (i.e. live storage) data of N years in ascending order.
Assign serial number n (n = 1 to N)
Determine the dependability (P %), i.e. percent time (in years) when shortages are
averted when live storage value equals the n
th
Draw a graph between live storage capacity (x-axis) versus % dependability (y-axis)
(Fig. 2.14).
. deficit: P = n/(N+1) * 100.
For pre-selected dependability P (%), read out the required storage from the graph or
find m where m = (N+1)*P/100 (round up to next integer value). Read the m
th
The computations for the ripple mass curve are given in Table 2.5 for Kurram Tangi Dam
for target demand of 805 ThAF (irrigation = 785, evaporation losses less direct rainfall = 20
ThAF). The yearly deficits for annual demand of 785, 700, 600 and 500 ThAF are shown in
Figure 2.13 and given in Table 2.6. The probability of averting shortages for various live
storage capacities is worked out in Table 2.6 and shown in Figure 2.14. It is seen that annual
demand has a significant effect on the required live storage capacity for same level of
flow
value and is P% dependable storage requirements for the dam.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-25
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
shortage averting. Reservoir operation simulations may be carried out to further evaluate the
live storage requirements.
Table 2.6: Storage requirements at Kurram Tangi dam to avert seasonal shortage. Average
annual flow = 833 ThAF.
A: Yearly storage required (ThAF) to
avert seasonal shortage
B: Probability of averting shortage for
various live storage capacity: Data of
yearly storage required arranged in
ascending order
Year
Max storage required for annual
demand of: Annual demand:
Rank
No.
m
Prob
P % 785 700 600 500 785 700 600 500
1971 250 150 115 85 88 69 38 17 1 3.2
1972 277 222 166 113 93 69 39 19 2 6.5
1973 274 164 95 67 105 80 45 21 3 9.7
1974 221 170 100 41 107 81 46 27 4 12.9
1975 335 218 114 77 108 83 49 28 5 16.1
1976 315 137 84 62 132 83 53 28 6 19.4
1977 434 172 86 47 132 94 60 31 7 22.6
1978 580 275 131 83 137 101 64 31 8 25.8
1979 565 198 100 66 146 105 68 31 9 29.0
1980 405 94 60 31 166 106 68 32 10 32.3
1981 310 101 64 28 169 108 73 39 11 35.5
1982 132 105 68 31 208 116 74 41 12 38.7
1983 132 106 68 32 221 128 74 43 13 41.9
1984 137 83 39 19 250 137 81 47 14 45.2
1985 208 149 73 50 274 139 84 47 15 48.4
1986 372 258 127 83 277 149 86 50 16 51.6
1987 427 263 113 77 310 150 95 62 17 54.8
1988 439 194 102 65 315 164 99 65 18 58.1
1989 502 173 99 72 335 170 100 66 19 61.3
1990 613 225 118 84 372 172 100 67 20 64.5
1991 467 108 74 43 405 173 102 71 21 67.7
1992 105 81 49 27 427 194 104 72 22 71.0
1993 88 69 45 21 434 198 113 77 23 74.2
1994 107 83 53 28 439 218 114 77 24 77.4
1995 93 69 38 17 465 222 115 83 25 80.6
1996 146 116 81 47 467 225 118 83 26 83.9
1997 169 128 74 39 502 258 127 84 27 87.1
1998 108 80 46 31 565 263 131 85 28 90.3
1999 166 139 104 71 580 275 166 99 29 93.5
2000 465 359 212 99 613 359 212 113 30 96.8
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-26
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Kurram Tangi Dam: Live storage vs. Shortage Probability
0
5
10
15
20
25
30
35
40
45
50
55
60
65
70
75
80
85
90
95
100
0 50 100 150 200 250 300 350 400 450 500 550 600 650 700
Required Live Storage (ThAF)
P
e
r
c
e
n
t

t
i
m
e

(
y
e
a
r
s
)

s
h
o
r
t
a
g
e

a
v
e
r
t
e
d
Annual demand = 785 ThAF
Annual demand = 700 ThAF
Annual demand = 600 ThAF
Annual demand = 500 ThAF

Figure 2.14: Shortages averted for different live storage capacity and annual demand.
2.4 RESERVOIR TOTAL CAPACITY
The reservoir total capacity is made up of live storage capacity required to regulate
the river flows for the intended purposes (store during high flows and release during low river
flows in relation to target/design demand). Rivers carry large amounts of silt. Under
unobstructed flow conditions the sediment is carried away with water. When a dam/reservoir
obstructs the natural flow regime, a very large part of the sediment (80 to 99%) gets
deposited in the reservoir. The sediment deposition will soon reduce the storage/regulating
capacity of the dam. To ensure that reservoir live/usable capacity remains available for long
time, additional capacity is provided to store the sediment load corresponding to a long time
period. The required reservoir capacity is determined as under:
Determine required live storage capacity from Ripple mass curve analysis described
in previous section.
Dead storage volume is selected in view of annual sediment inflow volumes such that
dead storage space is filled up in not less than 50 to100 years.
Example: The annual sediment inflow for Kurram Tangi Dam. is 6.2 MST (million
short tons). For sediment wet specific weight of 62.3 lb/cft the sediment volume equal
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-27
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
to = 6.2 x 10
6
Flood storage space (for a dam with part objective of flood control) is determined by
knowing flood volume which has to be temporarily stored in the dam and then
released, e.g. a 100 year frequency flood may be stored temporarily, with a total flood
volume of say 120 ThAF.
x 2000 /(62.3 x 43560) = 4570 Acre feet/year. Sediment volume inflow
in 50 years = 4570 * 50 = 228,500 AF. Sediment inflow in 100 years = 4570 * 100 =
457,000 AF. Considering 10 to 15% sediment outflow/flushing/setting in live storage
space, sediment volume in 50 years = 194,225 AF and in 100 years = 388,450 AF.
Thus dead storage space may be taken as say 300,000 AF (to hold sediments for 50
70 years).
Total gross storage = live storage + dead storage + flood storage.
The gross/dead/live storage may be adjusted on basis of dam height, geotechnical,
environmental issues and cost and economic return basis. e.g. KTD 1.2 MAF requires
a dam of height 345 ft + 15 = 360 ft and a 0.9 MAF dam is of height 285 ft+ 15 = 300
ft. Average irrigation shortages for 0.9 MAF dam is = 5% and for 1.2 MAF dam
shortage is 3%, showing a possible small incremental benefits due to larger dam.
Additional height of dam is provided in excess of gross storage for: i. Flood
surcharge, ii. Wave height for sustained winds, iii. Wave runup over the dam face for
very high winds, iv. Free board for unforeseen emergencies, etc.
2.5 FLOOD ANALYSIS
Dams are required to handle various flood events adequately without any threat to the
safety of the dam. These floods may occur during the construction stage (diversion floods) or
after completion of the construction (spillway floods). Thus it is very essential that magnitude
of various floods, that the dam may face, must be ascertained with accuracy. The floods are
characterized by the (1) return period/frequency of occurrence, (2) the peak flow rate, (3)
time to the peak flow, (4) duration of the flood, (5) the volume of the flood. All these
parameters affect the design of various components of the dam. Flood analysis describes the
peak flow discharge and complete hydrograph of the selected flood. Flood analysis can be
based on frequency analysis of historic flood data or by catchment modeling (using projected
rain and rainfall-runoff relationship).
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-28
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
2.5.1 FREQUENCY ANALYSIS OF HISTORIC DATA
Frequency analysis of historic flood data is performed to estimate the flood events of
large magnitude / return period. The floods are based on the historic data of the flood at the
dam site during last many years. During flood event the discharge must be observed and
recorded frequently preferably at half to one-hour interval. In case actual flood data is not
available, the floods may be synthesized from u/s, d/s locations, from adjacent rivers, from
historic rainfall data combined with catchment characteristics, or other accepted methods.
Frequency analysis is carried out to determine peak flood discharge corresponding to various
return periods of large values 100 to 1000 years by using Gumbel method, Extreme Value
Type-I (EV-I) method, Log-Pearson Type-III (LP-3) method, and other methods.
The probability of exceedence, p
x>X
of rainfall P (or discharge Q) is given as p
x>X
=
1/T and probability of non-exceedence (or safe probability) is given as: p
x<X
= 1 - P
x X
(x) =
1 - 1/T. For T = 5 years, p
x>X
= 1/5 = 0.20 and p
x<X
= 1 - 1/5 = 0.80. The probability of non-
exceedence in N consecutive years is as: (1 - 1/T)
N
. The risk / probability of failure (p
F
)
[exceedence of flow than design discharge is considered as failure, however the structure may
or may not sustain any damages] of system is given by the probability of exceedence of
rainfall larger than P for at least once in N years as: p
F
= 1 - (1 - 1/T)
N
. For T = 5, the p
F
for
various periods is as: N = 5 years, p
F
= 0.67; N = 10 years, p
F
= 0.89; N = 20 years, p
F
The reliability of estimated precipitation (P) corresponding to return period T (i.e. P
=
0.989.
T
)
is good to very good for T n, fair for n T 1.5 n and poor for T 2 n where n is the
number of years of record.
Following procedure is adopted to obtain depth-frequency and/or depth-duration-
frequency curves for the area of interest.
2.5.1.1 Gumbel method
Collect data of daily instantaneous peak flow for the dam site for sufficient long time periods
of 20 to 30 years (Table 2.7); longer the time period, better the results. The analysis
may be based on data in selected critical months (e.g. annual flood, winter flood,
summer flood etc).
Record the subjective values of peak flow (Q) e.g. annual maximum flood (annual series) or
all flow above some selected threshold values (partial duration series). For annual
series there will be same number of selected values as the number of years of record.
Arrange the flow data in descending order of magnitude (largest value first and smallest value
last). Assign an order number (m) to each value; order number 1 is assigned to largest
event (Table 2.8).
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-29
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Determine frequency or return period for any flood storm by Weibull plotting position
method as:

m
1 + n
= T (8.1)
where
T = return period (in years)
n = total number of observations in the record
m = order number of any event; 1 m n.
The return period so computed indicate that the flood of peak flow Q
m
shall be
equaled or exceeded at least once in T number of years
Draw a graph between flood frequency T and flood peak flow Q on a Gumbel's probability
paper with return period or frequency (T) on transformed scale and peak flow rate Q
on normal scale. A straight line is usually drawn through the graph points.
.
[NOTE: The Gumbel's probability paper has x-axis transformed as double log
(natural log to base e, ln) scale as: v = - ln [ ln T/(T-1)]. The T data is transformed
into variate v and then graph is drawn between the reduced variate v and flood peak
flow] At T = 1.582, v = 0.0.
Draw a smooth curve, usually a straight line, through the points. This is the frequency curve
for the flood peak flow (Fig. 2.15).
Read out rainfall values corresponding to desired frequency levels / return periods.

Table 2.7: Kurram River at Thal: Annual Instantaneous Peak Flows
Source: SWHP / WAPDA
Year Date
Annual
Peak (cfs)
Daily Average
Flow (cfs) Year Date
Annual Peak
(cfs)
Daily Average
Flow (cfs)
1971 4-Jul-1971 37,500 5,530 1986 18-Jul-1986 18,900 4,910
1972 19-Jul-1972 30,400 3,700 1987 26-Jul-1987 62,900 6,560
1973 26-Jul-1973 30,400 8,330 1988 23-Jul-1988 39,800 11,900
1974 5-Jul-1974 37,400 1,440 1989 17-Jul-1989 15,180 4,503
1975 13-Aug-1975 16,900 4,780 1990 18-Sep-1990 29,830 3,307
1976 18-Aug-1976 13,300 4,390 1991 13-Jul-1991 73,200 29,450
1977 26-Jul-1977 4,550 1,420 1992 22-Jul-1992 37,680 8,027
1978 6-Jul-1978 63,900 21,700 1993 23-Jul-1993 66,300 8,508
1979 9,700 1994 26-Jun-1994 18,965 13,600
1980 27-Jun-1980 4,420 3,490 1995 24-Apr-1995 22,725 13,590
1981 29-Mar-1981 12,500 5,940 1996 22-May-1996 15,644 5,610
1982 1-Jul-1982 18,000 3,160 1997 28-Aug-1997 1,911 1,323
1983 19-Aug-1983 24,400 4,170 1998 24-Apr-1998 2,860 1,918
1984 2-Aug-1984 49,600 6,230 1999 31-Jul-1999 9,911 1,508
1985 20-Aug-1985 19,500 2,460 2000 27-Dec-2000 549 544

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-30
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Table 2.8: Frequency analysis of Annual Instantaneous Peak Flows of Kurram River at Thal.
by Gumbel method
Ranking in descending
order
Frequency
Distribution
Ranking in descending
order
Frequency
Distribution
Year Flow
Cfs
Rank
m T years variate v
Year Flow
Cfs
Rank
m T years variate v
1991 89,890 1 34.00 3.51 1994 23,289 18 1.89 0.28
1993 81,416 2 17.00 2.80 1986 23,209 19 1.79 0.20
1978 78,469 3 11.33 2.38 1982 22,104 20 1.70 0.12
1987 77,241 4 8.50 2.08 1975 20,753 21 1.62 0.04
1984 60,909 5 6.80 1.84 1996 19,211 22 1.55 -0.04
1988 48,874 6 5.67 1.64 1989 18,641 23 1.48 -0.12
1970 47,401 7 4.86 1.47 1976 16,332 24 1.42 -0.20
1992 46,271 8 4.25 1.32 1981 15,350 25 1.36 -0.28
1971 46,050 9 3.78 1.18 1999 12,171 26 1.31 -0.37
1974 45,927 10 3.40 1.05 1979 11,912 27 1.26 -0.46
1969 42,120 11 3.09 0.94 1968 7,822 28 1.21 -0.55
1972 37,331 12 2.83 0.83 1977 5,587 29 1.17 -0.65
1973 37,331 13 2.62 0.73 1980 5,428 30 1.13 -0.76
1990 36,631 14 2.43 0.63 1998 3,512 31 1.10 -0.89
1983 29,963 15 2.27 0.54 1997 2,347 32 1.06 -1.04
1995 27,906 16 2.13 0.45 2000 674 33 1.03 -1.26
1985 23,946 17 2.00 0.37

KURRAM RIVER AT KT DAM SITE: Flood Frequency Analysis
0
10,000
20,000
30,000
40,000
50,000
60,000
70,000
80,000
90,000
100,000
110,000
120,000
130,000
-2.0 -1.5 -1.0 -0.5 0.0 0.5 1.0 1.5 2.0 2.5 3.0 3.5 4.0 4.5 5.0
Reduced variate: v = - Ln{Ln[T/(T-1)]}
A
n
n
u
a
l

P
e
a
k

F
l
o
w

(
C
f
s
)
2 5 10 20 30 40 50 Return Period (Years) ---> 75 100
Log Pearson Type III
Gumble distribution

Figure 2.15: Flood frequency analysis for Kurram Tangi Dam.

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-31
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
The rainfall depths for various frequency storms (i.e. P
2.5.1.2 Extreme Value-I (EV-I) method
T

) can also be determined from
the historic data using Extreme Value type-I (EV-I) distribution given as:
(

)
`

|
.
|

\
|
0.5772 -
1 - T
T
-
6
+ =
PT
ln ln

( )
where and is the mean and standard deviation of the population, respectively, and T is the
return period or frequency (in years). The above eqation holds only for large data (N ).
For small data the mean () and standard deviation () of the population is replaced by
sample average (x
av
) and sample standard deviation (s
N-1
6 ) and the parameters and
0.5772 are replaced by S
N
and Y
N
Table 2.9: Gumble frequency factors Y
from Table 2.9 given below. The Gumble method is used
for data with standard deviation of log transformed values to be less than 1.13.
N
and S
N
N
(Source: Subramanya P 246)
Y S
N
N
N
Y S
N
N
N
Y S
N

N

10 0.4952 0.9496 41 0.5442 1.1436 72 0.5552 1.1873
11 0.4996 0.9676 42 0.5448 1.1458 73 0.5555 1.1881
12 0.5035 0.9833 43 0.5453 1.1480 74 0.5557 1.1890
13 0.5070 0.9971 44 0.5458 1.1499 75 0.5559 1.1898
14 0.5100 1.0095 45 0.5463 1.1519 76 0.5561 1.1906
15 0.5128 1.0206 46 0.5468 1.1538 77 0.5563 1.1915
16 0.5157 1.0316 47 0.5473 1.1557 78 0.5565 1.1923
17 0.5181 1.0411 48 0.5477 1.1574 79 0.5567 1.1930
18 0.5202 1.0493 49 0.5481 1.1590 80 0.5569 1.1938
19 0.5220 1.0565 50 0.5485 1.1607 81 0.5570 1.1945
20 0.5236 1.0628 51 0.5489 1.1623 82 0.5572 1.1953
21 0.5252 1.0696 52 0.5493 1.1638 83 0.5574 1.1959
22 0.5268 1.0754 53 0.5497 1.1658 84 0.5576 1.1967
23 0.5283 1.0811 54 0.5501 1.1667 85 0.5578 1.1973
24 0.5296 1.0864 55 0.5504 1.1681 86 0.5580 1.1980
25 0.5309 1.0915 56 0.5508 1.1696 87 0.5581 1.1987
26 0.5320 1.0961 57 0.5511 1.1708 88 0.5583 1.1994
27 0.5332 1.1004 58 0.5515 1.1721 89 0.5585 1.2001
28 0.5343 1.1047 59 0.5518 1.1734 90 0.5586 1.2007
29 0.5353 1.1086 60 0.5521 1.1747 91 0.5587 1.2013
30 0.5362 1.1124 61 0.5524 1.1759 92 0.5589 1.2020
31 0.5371 1.1159 62 0.5527 1.1770 93 0.5591 1.2026
32 0.5380 1.1193 63 0.5530 1.1782 94 0.5592 1.2032
33 0.5388 1.1226 64 0.5533 1.1793 95 0.5593 1.2038
34 0.5396 1.1255 65 0.5535 1.1803 96 0.5595 1.2044
35 0.5402 1.1285 66 0.5538 1.1814 97 0.5596 1.2049
36 0.5410 1.1313 67 0.5540 1.1824 98 0.5598 1.2055
37 0.5418 1.1339 68 0.5543 1.1834 99 0.5599 1.2060
38 0.5424 1.1363 69 0.5545 1.1844 100 0.5600 1.2065
39 0.5430 1.1388 70 0.5548 1.1854
40 0.5436 1.1413 71 0.5550 1.1863 Infinity 0.5772 1.2825
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-32
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
The upper and lower confidence limits of the estimate (X
U
and X
L

) are given as:
s
F +
X
=
X e C T U
and
s
F
X
=
X e C T L
( )
where F
C
Confidence level (%) 50 68 80 90 95 99
is the confidence level factor as:
Factor F
C
and s
0.674 1.00 1.282 1.645 1.96 2.58
e

is the standard error of estimate given as:
| |
K
1.10 +
K
1.1396 + 1
n
s
=
s
2
T T
1/2
e
( )
where n is the sample size and s is the sample standard deviation. The frequency factor K
T

is
given as:
(

|
.
|

\
|

1 - T
T
+ 0.5772
6
- =
KT
ln ln

( )
Table 2.10: Frequency analysis by EV-I method.
T v Y S
n
Y
n
X
T
K
T
S
T
X
E
X
U

L







To apply LP-3 method the flood data is log transformed (Y = Log X) and mean (
2.5.1.3 Log-Pearson Type-III (LP-3)
Y ),
unbiased standard deviation (s
Y
) and coefficient of skewness (C
s
s K X X
T T
+ =
) of the log transformed data
is determined. The flood value (in log units) corresponding to a T year storm is determined
as:

The K
T
is the frequency factor depending on the coefficient of skewness (C
s
) of the data and
the target return period T (given in Table 2.11). USBR 1992 (p-216) has given a procedure to
adjust the station skewness coefficient (C
s
) with a generalized regional skew coefficient (C
m
)
given in US map, and a weighted skewness (C
w
) is determined for determining the frequency
factor as: C
w
= W C
s
+ (1-W) C
m
, where W is weighting factor as: W = V(C
m
) /
[V(C
s
)+V(C
m
)] where V(C
m
) is varience of C
m
{taken as 0.302}, V(C
s
) is varience of station
skewness determined as: V(Cs) = 10
A-B log(n/10)
, where A = -0.33+0.88|C
s
| (if |C
s
| 0.90) Or
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-33
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
A=-0.52+0.30|C
s
| (if |C
s
| > 0.90), and B = 0.94 0.26 |C
s
|, if |C
s
| 1.50 Or B = 0.55 if |C
s
| >
1.50. Then K
T
is obtained using factor C
w
Table 2.11: Frequency Factor K
.
T
=F(C
s
Coefficient of
Skewness, Cs
,T) for Log-Pearson Type-III Distribution
Recurrence Interval T in Years
2 10 25 50 100 200 1000
3.0 -0.396 1.180 2.278 3.152 4.051 4.970 7.250
2.5 -0.360 1.250 2.262 3.048 3.845 4.652 6.600
2.2 -0.330 1.284 2.240 2.970 3.705 4.444 6.200
2.0 -0.307 1.302 2.219 2.912 3.605 4.298 5.910
1.8 -0.282 1.318 2.193 2.848 3.499 4.147 5.660
1.6 -0.254 1.329 2.163 2.780 3.388 3.990 5.390
1.4 -0.225 1.337 2.128 2.706 3.271 3.828 5.110
1.2 -0.195 1.340 2.087 2.626 3.149 3.661 4.820
1.0 -0.164 1.340 2.043 2.542 3.022 3.489 4.540
0.9 -0.148 1.339 2.018 2.498 2.957 3.401 4.395
0.8 -0.132 1.336 1.998 2.453 2.891 3.312 4.250
0.7 -0.116 1.333 1.967 2.407 2.824 3.223 4.105
0.6 -0.099 1.328 1.939 2.359 2.755 3.132 3.960
0.5 -0.083 1.323 1.910 2.311 2.686 3.041 3.815
0.4 -0.066 1.317 1.880 2.261 2.615 2.949 3.670
0.3 -0.050 1.309 1.849 2.211 2.544 2.856 3.525
0.2 -0.033 1.301 1.818 2.159 2.472 2.763 3.380
0.1 -0.017 1.292 1.785 2.107 2.400 2.670 3.235
0.0 0.000 1.282 1.751 2.054 2.326 2.576 3.090
-0.1 0.017 1.270 1.716 2.000 2.252 2.482 2.950
-0.2 0.033 1.258 1.680 1.945 2.178 2.388 2.810
-0.3 0.050 1.245 1.643 1.890 2.104 2.294 2.675
-0.4 0.066 1.231 1.606 1.834 2.029 2.201 2.540
-0.5 0.083 1.216 1.567 1.777 1.955 2.108 2.400
-0.6 0.099 1.200 1.528 1.720 1.880 2.016 2.275
-0.7 0.116 1.183 1.488 1.663 1.806 1.926 2.150
-0.8 0.132 1.166 1.448 1.606 1.733 1.837 2.035
-0.9 0.148 1.147 1.407 1.549 1.660 1.749 1.910
-1.0 0.164 1.128 1.366 1.492 1.588 1.664 1.880
-1.4 0.225 1.041 1.198 1.270 1.318 1.351 1.465
-1.8 0.282 0.945 1.035 1.069 1.087 1.097 1.130
-2.2 0.330 0.844 0.888 0.900 0.905 0.907 0.910
-3.0 0.396 0.660 0.666 0.666 0.667 0.667 0.668
The K
T
( ) ( ) ( )
5 4 3 2 2 3 2
3 / 1 1 6 3 / 1 1 k zk k z k z z k z z K
T
+ + + + =
may also be determined as:

where k = C
s
2 2
2
001308 . 0 189269 . 0 432788 . 1 1
010328 . 0 802853 . 0 515517 . 2
w w w
w w
w z
+ + +
+ +
=
/6, and z is standard normal variable, given as:

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-34
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
and ( ) | |
2 / 1
2
1 ln p w = for 0 < p 0.5 [p = 1/T]. For p > 0.5, use 1-p instead of p and z is given
a negative sign.
2.5.2 FLOOD ANALYSIS BASED ON CATCHMENT MODELING
2.5.2.1 General procedure
The steps are:
1. Determine the expected rain P
T
2. Use a catchment loss model to determine runoff depth Q
for desired return period T by performing frequency
analysis of historic rainfall data. Use the rainfall data of critical months (annual,
summer, winter, month). Some areas of Pakistan have winter snowfalls and summer
rainfall. Winter snowfall will not produce any large runoff, thus rainfall in summer
months produce runoff and used for frequency analysis. Adjust the rainfall for aerial
reduction factor.
T
3. Use a historic or synthesized unit hydrograph to convert runoff depth to discharge
hydrograph Q
from the catchment area
considering the watershed hydrologic characteristics.
t
= U
t
*Q
T
4. Comput er model HEC-HMS may be used to do the above steps.
and determine the peak flow rate.
The time to peak may be determined from analysis of maximum historic floods. The
shape of the flood and flood volume are also derived from historic record. A unit hydrograph
may be derived from the historic data and used further to synthesize floods of various
frequencies. Table 2.7 and Fig. 2.15 describe /show a flood frequency curve and Table 2.12
and Fig. 2.16 describe computation of design flood hydrograph.
2.5.2.2 Design Flood Hydrograph
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-35
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation

Table 2.12: Derivation of T year flood from historic maximum flood.
Hours Max
historic
flood
cfs
30 year
frequency
flood
cfs
Hours Max
historic
flood
cfs
30 year
frequency
flood
cfs
Hours Max
historic
flood
cfs
30 year
frequency
flood
cfs
Historic maximum peak =79,885 cfs, 30-year flood peak = 86,500 cfs, Factor=1.083
0 3,823 4,116 9 50,470 54,333 18 17,192 18,508
1 3,857 4,152 10 66,860 71,978 19 14,368 15,467
2 4,030 4,339 11 79,885 86,000 20 11,666 12,559
3 4,587 4,938 12 63,877 68,766 21 9,382 10,100
4 5,641 6,073 13 42,462 45,713 22 7,378 7,943
5 7,140 7,687 14 31,805 34,240 23 6,111 6,579
6 13,059 14,059 15 27,062 29,133 24 4,210 4,532
7 22,811 24,557 16 23,332 25,118 25 4,155 4,473
8 34,551 37,195 17 19,894 21,416 26 4,030 4,339

Hydrograph of 30 year frequency Flood at Kurram Tangi Dam
0
5,000
10,000
15,000
20,000
25,000
30,000
35,000
40,000
45,000
50,000
55,000
60,000
65,000
70,000
75,000
80,000
85,000
90,000
0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 16 18 20 22 24 26 28
Time (Hours)
D
i
s
c
h
a
r
g
e

(
c
f
s
)

Figure 2.16: A 30-year frequency flood for Kurram Tangi Dam.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-36
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation

2.6 DIVERSION FLOODS
The construction of the dam embankment takes many years to complete. There has to
be arrangement that allows flows including flood flows to be diverted away from the
construction area during the whole construction period. Diversion tunnels/channels are
provided to pass the diversion flows. The selection of the capacity and size of the diversion
tunnel/channel has to be made in view of the design diversion flood that the system has to
pass. The magnitude/frequency of diversion flood taken as (10 x T
c
)
,
where T
c
Q
- is the number
of years of construction period.
T
Both peak flow rate and flood volume (i.e. flood hydrograph Q
selected from frequency analysis of historic annual maximum flood flow.
t
Determine time gap between successive flood events.
distribution) are
important for routing
Frequency analysis by log-Pearson III or Gumble extreme value method. Small
extrapolation Ok
Determine confidence limits on Q
T
If historic flood data is not available, synthesize Q
and select appropriate value.
T
from historic P
T
If measurements not at dam site, transpose flood to dam site from u/s or d/s location
by area method. Q
values using
appropriate catchment runoff models (e.g. HEC-HMS).
2
= Q
1
* (A
2
/A
1
)
If no record of flow is available, regional flow values may be used.
0.5

2.7 PROBABLE MAXIMUM FLOOD, PMF
For large dams the spillway is usually designed to cater for probable maximum flood
(PMF). The PMF is derived from the knowledge of probable maximum precipitation (PMP)
over the catchment area, the catchment hydrologic characteristics to convert rainfall into
runoff and transformation of excess rainfall into storm runoff by using unit hydrograph. The
unit hydrograph derived from the project historic flood record may be used to determine
PMF. PMF for KT dam is shown in Fig. 2.17.
PMF results from occurrence of PMP on the catchment area.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-37
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
PMP determined by meteorologists from historic data of extreme rainfall events,
humidity, dew point, precipitable water in the air column, after due maximization to
account possible worst conditions.
PMP averaged over catchment area.
PMP as rainfall over short/long time periods.
PMP converted to PMF by using appropriate catchment runoff models considering
worst hydrologic conditions over the catchment area. Models as HEC-HMS may be
used.
PMP peak flow rate, flow volumes and time distribution of flow important for
routing.
PMP is routed through the spillway with designed/selected elevation-outflow
relationship.
Maximum rise of water surface above the normal conservation level provide the flood
surcharge for fixing the free board of the dam.
Kurram Tangi Dam : Probable Maximum Flood Inflow Hydrograph
SCS CN = 92, Lag time = 9 hrs, PMP-68
0
10,000
20,000
30,000
40,000
50,000
60,000
70,000
80,000
90,000
100,000
110,000
120,000
130,000
140,000
150,000
160,000
170,000
180,000
190,000
200,000
0 6 12 18 24 30 36 42 48 54 60 66 72 78 84 90 96 102
Time (hours)
D
i
s
c
h
a
r
g
e

(
c
f
s
)

Figure 2.17: PMF for KT dam.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-38
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Selection of Spillway Design Flood
Selection of design flood for spillways is a very crucial matter, and many countries have
devised standards for this purpose; however no such standards exist for Pakistan. ICOLD
(1992) noted that the spillway design discharge has direct bearing on structure safety on one
side and project costs on the other side. Ideally this should be based on engineering and
economic considerations relevant to the site and its environment. In most cases two distinct
discharges are set: (1) the design flood: the flood that must be discharged through the
structure under normal conditions with a safety of margin provided by the free board; this is
usually taken as flood of selected recurrence probability / return period; and (2) the safety
check flood, which is the discharge which can be passed by the crest structure, the
waterway and energy dissipater on the verge of failure but to exhibit marginally safe
performance.
ICOLD (1992) narrated the factors to be considered for selection of spillway design flood and
include analysis of (i) downstream economic hazard loss of economic values, (ii)
downstream life hazard loss of human life, (iii) type of dam its susceptibility to breach
and (major) damage in case of structure overtopping, (iv) spillway type susceptibility to
malfunction, (v) structure height, (vi) storage volume at maximum water depth, (vii)
consequences of dam failure -- in terms of being very vital for area population or mere some
economic costs for replacement of works.
Different standard practices in dam engineering for selection of spillway design flood in all
over the world.
1. Indian Standard for design of spillway capacity recommends 100 year or standard
project flood for design of intermediate structures (Engineering Hydrology by K
Subramanya P 257).
2. ASCE recommend standard project flood for structure less than 30 m height and
capacity of head pond less than 62 MCM (Introduction to hydrology by Warren and
Wiseman P 587).
3. US Army Corp of Engineering recommend 100 year or upto 50% PMF for
intermediate structure where loss of property and damage to structure is minor
(capacity less than 60 MCM and height less than 30 m (ICOLD Bulletin 82 P 177)
4. In China for structure of this category return period of 200 yr is recommended (Ref:
Selection of design floods in South Asia by J ian Liu; [liujn@asaka.newjec.co.jp]).
5. Australian National Committee on Large Dam (ACOLD) recommends 100-1000
years flood for design of structure where loss of structure and downstream loss of life
and property is very high (ICOLD Bulletin 82 P 176).
6. In United Kingdom recommendations for selection of design flood for overflow
section are 0.3 PMF to 1000 year (General) and 0.2 PMF to 150 year (if overtopping
is tolerable). (ICOLD Bulletin 82 P 197).
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-39
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
7. Ohio Dept of Natural Resource recommends 40-100 % PMF for design of spillway
where height of dam is more than 60 ft and capacity greater than 5000 acre-ft
[water@dnr.state.oh.us].
8. When the spillway design flood is selected as of 100-1000 year frequency, then two
flood estimates should be developed. 1) Design flood for which the structure is
designed and suitable free board is provided above this capacity. 2) Safety check
flood. a higher flood, e.g. PMF for which the safety of the structure must be
established with less than acceptable safety criteria and/or free board.
The pertinent detail of risk factors for the e.g. Patrind HPP project is as under:
1) D/s Economic hazard: Low minimal (underdeveloped to occasional structures or
agriculture). The houses and small agriculture is located well above the maximum
historic flood levels. The d/s bridges across the Kunhar river are well above the flood
levels (these have either stood against the 1992 flood levels or have been
constructed a new after 1992 flood). There is almost negligible chance of loss of
property downstream of the weir.
2) D/s Loss of life: Low Most dwelling are located well above maximum flood levels
and due to large peak time, people are likely to move quickly above the probable
flood levels.
3) Type of dam: Concrete dams are predominantly considered safe against structural
damages, have factor of safety of more than 2 against overturning, sliding failure and
material stresses. Some damage may be incurred to bridge deck in case flood
reaches the weir structure top.
4) Spillway type: Spillway will be mostly in operational condition before the onset of any
exceptionally high flood to pass the usual rainy season flood flows. The seven bays
are 12 m wide each and its blockage susceptibility due to debris flow is considered
as very low.
5) Structure height Storage volume: The structure height is only 26 m with a storage
capacity of only 6.42 MCM and is thus classified as small to intermediate structure.
Due to very small storage volume the enhancement of any flood flows will be limited
to 2 to 4% only.
6) Dam failure consequences: The weir structure is planned to divert water for
hydropower production only. Thus in case of any dam breach there will be economic
loss in terms of loss of hydropower production only and such the weir structure can
be refurbished after necessary repairs/improvements. Local or other population will
not be directly affected.
7) Summary: The weir structure is defined as small to intermediate on capacity basis
with low risk on economic and loss of life basis.

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-40
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
2.8 LEVEL POOL RESERVOIR ROUTING
Reservoir routing is required to determine the water surface elevations for known
inflow hydrograph and designed elevation-outflow relationship of structures as diversion
tunnel or spillway. The inflow for diversion tunnel is the design flood flow against which
protection is planned during the construction. The inflow for the spillway is the design
project flood (usually PMF or a 10,000 year frequency flood) for the spillway. For large
storage reservoirs the incoming flood water is temporarily stored in the flood surcharge space
of the dam. This results in attenuation of the outflowing flood peak to a smaller value. Thus
the spillway design discharge is taken as equal to maximum outflow rates.
Alternate procedures can be used to perform flood routing through the reservoir.
These include level pool reservoir routing, hydrologic routing e.g. HEC-HMS, hydraulic
routing e.g. HEC-RAS. The basic data needed for reservoir routing id incommimng flood
hydrograph, reservoir elevation-storage-outflow relation, reservoir cross section data, the
spillway geometric data and coefficients describing head losses, and head-discharge relation.
Level pool reservoir routing is discussed below.
The flow entering into a large reservoir quickly mingles with the storage water. The
water surface profile attains some grade at entry into the reservoir but then quickly levels off
to a uniform elevation (actually with a very small gradient but approaching to uniform level).
This happens due to a very large flow cross section of the reservoirs. Thus the outflow is
function of water surface elevation of the reservoir. The reservoir elevation in turn depends
on the storage volume. Note that the water surface elevation and storage volume are related
by the elevation-volume-area relationship of the reservoir. Thus outflow = F (reservoir
elevation) e.g. O = K
1
+ K
2
x (El datum)
K3
Initial condition: outflow = inflow (for diversion structure and for spillway
discharging freely before the design flood; Else spillway outflow = zero.)
. Following steps are taken for reservoir routing.
Inflow will add to storage and raise water level. Increased water level result in greater
outflows
Incremental storage over a time interval equals the difference of inflow and outflow
volume and will add to storage
Analysis at t interval with t 0
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-41
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Let V
0
, El
0
, d
0
, I
0
, O
0
Let O = F(d). e.g. O = 13.56 d
represent the initial condition for the storage volume (V),
water surface elevation (El), depth (d) over the invert of diversion tunnel (or depth
over the normal conservation level for spillway routing), inflows (I), outflows (O) at
starting time, i.e. t = 0.
2.5
(O in cfs, d = depth ft over invert). Also find d =
F(O), e.g. d = 0.07375 O
0.4
Let elevation-volume relation is V = F(El) e.g. V = 0.11284*(El1800)
.
2.790
and El =
1800 + 2.18878 * V
0.3583
Set O
(El ft amsl, V - AF)
0
= I
0
Determine d
.
0
corresponding to O
0
Find initial elevation El
from the relevant hydraulic equation d = F(O).
0
= tunnel invert level EL
T
+ d
0
Determine initial reservoir storage volume corresponding to El

0
For t = 1, set O
.
1
= O
0
For all next time steps determine the flow depth over the invert d
.
t+1
= El
t
- EL
Determine O
T

t+1
= F (d
t+1
Determine the inflow and outflow volumes during the time interval t to t+1 as: V
)
IN
=
(I
t
+ I
t+1
)/2 * t and V
OUT
= (O
t
+ O
t+1
Determine change in storage volume during the time interval as: V = V
)/2 * t
IN
- V
Determine new storage volume as V
OUT

t+1
= V
t
Find new reservoir surface elevation as:El
+ V
t+1
= F(V
Table 2.13 may be used for systematic calculations:
t+1)

Table 2.13: Reservoir level pool flood routing.
Time t
(hr)
Inflow
I (cfs)
Depth
d (ft)
Outflow
O (cfs)
V
(AF)
IN
V
(AF)
OUT
V
(AF)
Volume
V (AF)
WS Elevation
(ft)
0 2500 8.06 2500 1955.81 1833.06
1 2850 8.06 2500 221.07 206.61 14.97 1970.78 1833.16
2 3550 8.16 2579 264.46 209.88 54.58 2025.36 1833.49
3 4675 8.49 2848 339.88 224.26 115.62 2140.98 1834.16
4
5

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-42
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Example: (see Table 2.13 above)
Given: t = 1 hr and I
0
= 2500c I
1
= 2850 I
2
= 3550, I
3
Let invert level of tunnel = El
= 4675, cfs etc.
T
Outflow O = 13.56 * d
= 1825 ft.
2.5
Also d = 0.07375 O
0.4
V = 0.11284 * (El 1800)
(O in cfs, d in ft above tunnel invert
level).
2.790
and El = 1800 + 2.18878 * V
0.3583
At t = 0
(El - ft, V - AF)
O
0
= I
0
d = (O/13.56)
= 2500 cfs.
1/2.5
, and d
0
= (2500/1356)
1/2.5

El
= 8.06 ft
0
V
= 1825 + 8.06 = 1833.06 ft.
IN
= 0.0, V
OUT
V
= 0.0, V = 0.0
0
= 0.11284 * (1833.06 1800)
2.79
At t = 1
= 1955.81 AF.
I
1
d
= 2850 cfs
1
= d
0
O
= 8.06 ft
1
= O
0
V
= 2500 cfs
IN
V
= (2500+2850)/2*3600/43560 = 221.07 AF
OUT
V = 221.07 206.61 = 14.97 AF
= (2500+2500)/2*3600/43560 = 206.61 AF
V
1
El
= 1955.81 + 14.97 = 1970.78 AF
1
= 2.1887 * 1970.78
0.3583
At t = 2
+ 1800 = 1833.16 ft
I
2
d
= 3550 cfs
2
O
= 1833.16 1825 = 8.16 ft
2
= 13.56 * d
2
2.5
= 13.56 * 8.16
2.5
V
= 2579 cfs
IN
V
= (2850+3550)/2*3600/43560 = 264.46 AF
OUT
V = 264.46 209.88 = 54.58 AF
= (2500+2579)/2*3600/43560 = 209.88 AF
V
2
El
= 1970.78 + 54.58 = 2025.36 AF
2
= 2.1887 * 2025.36
0.3583
At t = 3
+ 1800 = 1833.49 ft
I
3
d
= 4675 cfs
3
= 1833.49 1825 = 8.49 ft
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-43
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
O
3
= 13.56 * 8.49
2.5
V
= 2848 cfs
IN
V
= (3550+4675)/2*3600/43560 = 339.88 AF
OUT
V = 339.88 224.26 = 115.62 AF
= (2579+2848)/2*3600/43560 = 224.26 AF
V
3
El
= 2025.36 + 115.62 = 2140.98 AF
3
= 2.1887 * 2140.98
0.3583
Example:
+ 1800 = 1834.16 ft
The 30-year flood data of Table 2.12 is routed through 2 Nos. diversion tunnels (one
of 14 ft dia and other of 20 ft dia) with invert at 1825 ft. The elevation-volume and depth-
outflow relationship is given as: El = 2.18878*Vol
0.358
, Vol = 0.11284*(El-1800)
2.79
, O =
18.2351 d
2
+ 374.738 d 1000.58 for d < 17 ft and O = - 5.356 d
2
The Table 2.14 and Fig. 2.18 reveal that the water surface and the outflow rise quickly
due to sudden influx of large amount of flood water. The outflow reaches at its maximum
after 8 hours and stays so for next 10 hrs. The water surface level drops steadily and reaches
the pre-flood conditions after 15 hours. The second flood is not likely to occur within this
time period. Therefore the diversion capacity provided is adequate. The results for PMF
routing of Kurram Tangi dam are shown in Fig. 2.19.
+ 649.652 d 3744.7 for d
>= 17 ft. The routing computations are given in Table 2.14 and results are shown in Fig. 2.18.
The maximum inflow is 86,000 cfs, maximum outflow is 34,650 cfs, and maximum water
level is 1880.23 ft amsl. This defines the height of coffer dam plus usual other allowances.
Reservoir routing can also be performed conveniently by using HEC-HMS model.
The model requires description of inflow hydrograph, the elevation-storage relationship data,
the elevation-outflow relationship data, the description of clock time for start and end of
simulation. The model output (graph and tabular) provides reservoir elevations, inflows,
outflows, storage at different times (Figs. 2.20 and 2.21).
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-44
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation

Table 2.14:Routing of diversion flood through the diversion tunnels
Flow in cfs, voume in acre feet, elevation in ft.
Time hr Inflow In Vol WS El Depth Outflow Out Vol Storage V
0 4116 0 1834.38 9.38 4116 0 2184
1 4152 342 1834.40 9.40 4129 341 2185
2 4339 351 1834.40 9.40 4133 341 2194
3 4938 383 1834.45 9.45 4171 343 2234
4 6073 455 1834.68 9.68 4334 351 2338
5 7687 569 1835.25 10.25 4753 375 2531
6 14059 899 1836.26 11.26 5532 425 3005
7 24557 1596 1838.56 13.56 7434 536 4064
8 37195 2552 1842.97 17.97 11405 778 5838
9 54333 3782 1848.92 23.92 16469 1152 8468
10 71978 5219 1855.89 30.89 21749 1579 12108
11 86000 6528 1863.53 38.53 26724 2003 16633
12 68766 6395 1871.19 46.19 30859 2379 20649
13 45713 4731 1876.92 51.92 33400 2655 22724
14 34240 3304 1879.61 54.61 34426 2803 23225
15 29133 2619 1880.23 55.23 34650 2854 22990
16 25118 2242 1879.94 54.94 34546 2859 22372
17 21416 1923 1879.16 54.16 34264 2843 21452
18 18508 1650 1877.98 52.98 33817 2813 20288
19 15467 1404 1876.44 51.44 33204 2769 18923
20 12559 1158 1874.55 49.55 32409 2711 17369
21 10100 936 1872.30 47.30 31390 2636 15669
22 7943 746 1869.68 44.68 30113 2541 13874
23 6579 600 1866.71 41.71 28542 2424 12050
24 4532 459 1863.42 38.42 26659 2281 10228
25 4473 372 1859.81 34.81 24403 2110 8490
26 4339 364 1855.95 30.95 21786 1909 6946
27 4339 359 1852.06 27.06 18936 1683 5621
28 4339 359 1848.26 23.26 15936 1441 4539
29 4339 359 1844.70 19.70 12934 1193 3705
30 4339 359 1841.57 16.57 10211 956 3107
31 4339 359 1839.03 14.03 7843 746 2719
32 4339 359 1837.21 12.21 6291 584 2494
33 4339 359 1836.07 11.07 5383 482 2370
34 4339 359 1835.42 10.42 4883 424 2305
35 4339 359 1835.07 10.07 4618 393 2271
36 4339 359 1834.88 9.88 4480 376 2253
37 4339 359 1834.78 9.78 4410 367 2244
38 4339 359 1834.73 9.73 4375 363 2240
39 4339 359 1834.71 9.71 4357 361 2238
40 4339 359 1834.70 9.70 4348 360 2237
El = 2.18878*Vol
0.358
Vol = 0.11284*(El-1800)
2.79

O = 18.2351 d
2
+ 374.738 d 1000.58 for d < 17 ft and O = - 5.356 d
2
+ 649.652 d 3744.7 for d >= 17
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-45
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
KTD Flood diversion
0
10000
20000
30000
40000
50000
60000
70000
80000
90000
100000
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40
Time (hrs)
I
n
,

o
u
t

F
l
o
w

(
c
f
s
)
1800
1810
1820
1830
1840
1850
1860
1870
1880
1890
1900
R
e
s
e
r
v
o
i
r

w
a
t
e
r

s
u
r
f
a
c
e

e
l
e
v
a
t
i
o
n

F
t
Inflows
Outflow
WS Elev

Figure 2.18: Diversion flood routing.
KTD PMF Routing for Spillway Design
0
20000
40000
60000
80000
100000
120000
140000
160000
180000
200000
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 45 50
Time (hrs)
F
l
o
w

(
c
f
s
)
2100
2101
2102
2103
2104
2105
2106
2107
2108
2109
2110
R
e
s
e
r
v
o
i
r

w
a
t
e
r

e
l
e
v
a
t
i
o
n

(
f
t
)
Inflows
Outflow
Res Water Elev

Figure 2.19: Routing of PMF for spillway design.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-46
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation

Figure: 2.20: Summary of diversion flood routing by HEC-HMS.

Figure 2.21: Detail routing output of HEC-HMS model.
Water Surface Elevations (ft)
Storage
Inflow hydrograph
Outflow hydrograph
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-47
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
2.9 RESERVOIR OPERATION
Reservoirs are created to store water during periods of large inflows and release the stored
water subsequently. Reservoir regulation requires that reservoir water levels at different time
of the year may be known. For hydropower generation, the determination of net head is
dependent on the reservoir water levels. Reservoir operation study is carried out to determine
temporal changes in storage volume, reservoir water levels, actual supplies vis--vis target
releases, shortages, spills, evaporation losses, over life (or part life) of dam for given inflows.
In addition energy generation, and alternate modes of reservoir filling or emptying are
studied. Reservoir operation is also done to establish required live storage capacity for
various inflow and demand patterns. Reservoirs considerably improve the dependable flow of
the river.
Reservoir operation is based on long period (30-50 years) historic data of inflows
into the dam, evaporation, and rainfall. Data may be on the basis of 10-daily or
monthly periods.
Data may be actual historic or synthesized. Assumed data may be used for
scenario testing only.
Reservoir operation is carried to meet target water demand and for selected
gross/dead storage values and site specific elevation volume area function
Reservoir operation is essentially an accounting procedure on volume basis.
Different variables used in reservoir operation calculations be expressed as:
I = Inflows,
D = demand,
R = actual releases,
S = shortage if any; S = D - R,
El = reservoir water surface elevation,
LS = reservoir live storage
DS = reservoir dead storage
GV = reservoir gross storage volume = LS + DS,
V = reservoir current volume
RV = Maximum volume of water releasable in the current simulation interval,
A = reservoir surface area,
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-48
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
E = pan evaporation (mm/period),
Ev = evaporation volume from the lake surface,
P = rainfall (mm/period),
Pv = direct precipitation/rain volume over the lake surface.
Reservoir current gross storage volume V is further described as:
V
1
V
= volume at beginning of simulation interval,
2
V
= volume at end of simulation interval after accounting releases only,
a
V
= average volume during the simulation interval = (V1+V2)/2,
3
V = volume at end of simulation interval after accounting all releases, evaporation,
rainfall, and spillages.
= volume after accounting releases, evaporation, and direct rainfall but excluding
spillage and
Simulations are carried over small time periods, e.g. 10-day or one month, and are started
with assumed starting live storage volume V
0
1. Given data is Inflow I, rainfall data P, pan evaporation data E.

2. Determine period starting volume: for first time period V
1
= V
0
and for other periods
V
1
= V
t-1
(i.e. volume V

3. Net water available for release: RV = V
at end of last period)
1
4. Release demand = D
DS + I
5. Irrigation release R: R = D

6. Shortage: S = R D
If D RV Else R = RV
7. % Shortage = S/D * 100
8. V
2
= V
1
9. Average volume: V
+I - R
a
= (V
1
+V
2
10. Average reservoir El = Function of (V
)/2
a
11. Average surface area: A = Function of (average E1and El -V-A relationship)
and El -V- A relationship)
12. Lake evaporation: Ev = E * lake factor ( 0.7) * average lake surface area A *
simulation time period * units conversion factor.
13. Rain volume falling over the reservoir surface are: Pv = P * lake surface area (use
appropriate conversion units)
14. V
3
= V
2
15. Check for any spillage: If V
- Ev + Pv
3
> gross storage GV, spill = V
3
16. Reservoir volume at end of simulation interval: V = V
GV, Else spill = 0
3
spill
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-49
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
17. Reservoir water surface elevation: El = Function of (V, and El-V-A relationship)
Example:
The reservoir operation for Kurram Tangi dam is given in Table 2.15 for the period
1971-73. The summary of results for 31 years period 1971-2001 (live storage capacity = 600
ThAF) are given in Table 2.16. The results are shown for reservoir water level, reservoir
volume, and deficits/shortage from target demand are shown in Figs. 2.22 to 2.24.The
dependability of water delivery for various reservoir live storage capacities of 50, 100, 200,
300, 400, 500, 600, 700 and 800 ThAF are shown in Fig. 2.25 and summarized in Table 2.17.
It is seen that larger size reservoirs considerably improves the dependability of water
delivery. However the incremental benefits of larger reservoirs decreases. This explains that
the selection of the reservoir live storage capacity should be evaluated from both availability
and economic point of view.
Reservoir operation simulations also provide the reservoir water levels, and therefore
the net head, for the potential hydropower plant at the toe of the dam. Thus the reservoir
water levels and the flow releases may be used to develop head duration, flow duration and
power production duration curves and the total power production under future dam operation
conditions.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-50
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Table 2.15: Reservoir operation. Volume in ThAF. (Starting V = 700)
Time I P V RV
1
D R S V V
2
A
a
PE Pv V Spill
3
V El
J an 1-
10,71 9.8 0.00 700.0 409.8 9.79 9.79 0.0 700.0 700.0 7471 0.34 0.00 699.7 0.0 699.7 2072.3
J an 11-20 9.8 0.00 699.7 409.5 10.94 10.94 0.0 698.6 699.1 7464 0.37 0.00 698.2 0.0 698.2 2072.1
J an 21-31 9.7 4.57 698.2 407.9 14.11 14.11 0.0 693.8 696.0 7441 0.40 0.09 693.5 0.0 693.5 2071.5
Feb 01-10 7.8 6.03 693.5 401.3 14.31 14.31 0.0 687.0 690.3 7399 0.43 0.12 686.7 0.0 686.7 2070.5
Feb 11-20 7.8 0.00 686.7 394.5 18.50 18.50 0.0 676.0 681.3 7333 0.51 0.00 675.5 0.0 675.5 2068.9
Feb 21-28 6.7 16.76 675.5 382.1 23.67 23.67 0.0 658.5 667.0 7227 0.57 0.34 658.2 0.0 658.2 2066.5
Mar 01-10 7.8 2.22 658.2 366.0 16.47 16.47 0.0 649.6 653.9 7130 0.75 0.04 648.9 0.0 648.9 2065.1
Mar 11-20 4.5 0.20 648.9 353.4 22.99 22.99 0.0 630.4 639.6 7023 0.87 0.00 629.5 0.0 629.5 2062.3
Mar 21-31 5.2 1.71 629.5 334.7 27.46 27.46 0.0 607.2 618.4 6862 0.98 0.03 606.3 0.0 606.3 2058.8
Apr 01-10 5.6 0.00 606.3 311.8 30.29 30.29 0.0 581.5 593.9 6674 0.89 0.00 580.7 0.0 580.7 2054.9
Apr 11-20 7.1 17.21 580.7 287.8 27.38 27.38 0.0 560.4 570.5 6493 1.02 0.31 559.7 0.0 559.7 2051.6
Apr 21-30 18.4 28.96 559.7 278.1 17.38 17.38 0.0 560.7 560.2 6413 1.16 0.52 560.1 0.0 560.1 2051.7
May 01-10 6.9 0.00 560.1 267.0 22.76 22.76 0.0 544.3 552.2 6349 1.13 0.00 543.1 0.0 543.1 2048.9
May 11-20 8.6 14.16 543.1 251.8 24.65 24.65 0.0 527.1 535.1 6214 1.30 0.25 526.1 0.0 526.1 2046.1
May 21-31 9.5 25.02 526.1 235.6 26.47 26.47 0.0 509.1 517.6 6074 1.46 0.42 508.1 0.0 508.1 2043.1
J un 01-10 14.5 0.00 508.1 222.6 15.37 15.37 0.0 507.2 507.6 5994 1.38 0.00 505.8 0.0 505.8 2042.7
J un 11-20 14.2 8.76 505.8 220.0 17.41 17.41 0.0 502.6 504.2 5966 1.42 0.15 501.4 0.0 501.4 2042.0
J un 21-30 5.8 14.67 501.4 207.2 22.47 22.47 0.0 484.7 493.0 5875 1.35 0.24 483.6 0.0 483.6 2038.9
J ul 01-10 24.6 23.56 483.6 208.2 23.93 23.93 0.0 484.3 483.9 5800 1.26 0.38 483.4 0.0 483.4 2038.8
J ul 11-20 15.7 46.74 483.4 199.1 18.31 18.31 0.0 480.8 482.1 5785 1.20 0.75 480.4 0.0 480.4 2038.3
J ul 21-31 52.4 70.36 480.4 232.8 17.98 17.98 0.0 514.8 497.6 5912 1.16 1.16 514.8 0.0 514.8 2044.2
Aug 01-10 43.4 36.64 514.8 258.2 13.05 13.05 0.0 545.1 529.9 6173 1.18 0.63 544.6 0.0 544.6 2049.2
Aug 11-20 24.5 0.00 544.6 269.1 15.60 15.60 0.0 553.5 549.0 6325 1.09 0.00 552.4 0.0 552.4 2050.4
Aug 21-31 21.2 0.00 552.4 273.6 25.41 25.41 0.0 548.2 550.3 6335 0.99 0.00 547.2 0.0 547.2 2049.6
Sep 01-10 13.7 0.00 547.2 260.9 29.08 29.08 0.0 531.9 539.5 6249 1.07 0.00 530.8 0.0 530.8 2046.9
Sep 11-20 8.1 0.00 530.8 238.9 29.60 29.60 0.0 509.3 520.1 6094 0.93 0.00 508.4 0.0 508.4 2043.1
Sep 21-30 3.2 0.00 508.4 211.6 29.48 29.48 0.0 482.1 495.3 5893 0.79 0.00 481.3 0.0 481.3 2038.5
Oct 01-10 5.0 0.00 481.3 186.3 29.15 29.15 0.0 457.2 469.2 5679 0.84 0.00 456.3 0.0 456.3 2034.0
Oct 11-20 7.0 0.00 456.3 163.3 29.02 29.02 0.0 434.3 445.3 5479 0.73 0.00 433.6 0.0 433.6 2029.8
Oct 21-31 5.7 0.00 433.6 139.3 30.04 30.04 0.0 409.3 421.4 5276 0.64 0.00 408.6 0.0 408.6 2025.0
Nov 01-10 6.4 0.00 408.6 115.1 32.91 32.91 0.0 382.1 395.4 5050 0.42 0.00 381.7 0.0 381.7 2019.6
Nov 11-20 6.6 0.00 381.7 88.3 32.23 32.23 0.0 356.1 368.9 4816 0.33 0.00 355.8 0.0 355.8 2014.2
Nov 21-30 7.7 0.00 355.8 63.5 18.31 18.31 0.0 345.2 350.5 4649 0.26 0.00 344.9 0.0 344.9 2011.9
Dec 01-10 11.1 0.00 344.9 56.0 6.87 6.87 0.0 349.2 347.0 4618 0.29 0.00 348.9 0.0 348.9 2012.7
Dec 11-20 11.5 0.00 348.9 60.4 6.93 6.93 0.0 353.4 351.2 4655 0.27 0.00 353.2 0.0 353.2 2013.7
Dec 21-31 13.0 2.16 353.2 66.2 6.55 6.55 0.0 359.6 356.4 4703 0.25 0.03 359.4 0.0 359.4 2015.0
J an 1-
10,72 6.0 0.00 359.4 65.4 9.79 9.79 0.0 355.7 357.5 4713 0.23 0.00 355.4 0.0 355.4 2014.1
J an 11-20 6.7 3.11 355.4 62.1 10.94 10.94 0.0 351.2 353.3 4675 0.25 0.04 351.0 0.0 351.0 2013.2
J an 21-31 9.0 32.89 351.0 60.0 14.11 14.11 0.0 345.9 348.4 4631 0.27 0.42 346.0 0.0 346.0 2012.1
Feb 01-10 7.2 0.00 346.0 53.2 14.31 14.31 0.0 338.9 342.5 4576 0.22 0.00 338.7 0.0 338.7 2010.5
Feb 11-20 8.1 15.37 338.7 46.9 18.50 18.50 0.0 328.4 333.5 4494 0.25 0.19 328.3 0.0 328.3 2008.2
Feb 21-28 6.6 0.00 328.3 34.9 23.67 23.67 0.0 311.2 319.7 4366 0.28 0.00 310.9 0.0 310.9 2004.2
Mar 01-10 7.9 9.33 310.9 18.8 16.47 16.47 0.0 302.4 306.6 4242 0.24 0.11 302.2 0.0 302.2 2002.2
Mar 11-20 15.3 18.03 302.2 17.5 22.99 17.55 5.4 300.0 301.1 4190 0.28 0.21 299.9 0.0 299.9 2001.6
Mar 21-31 25.0 16.45 299.9 25.0 27.46 24.95 2.5 300.0 300.0 4179 0.32 0.19 299.9 0.0 299.9 2001.6
Apr 01-10 27.1 12.76 299.9 26.9 30.29 26.95 3.3 300.0 299.9 4178 0.44 0.15 299.7 0.0 299.7 2001.6
Apr 11-20 26.4 8.83 299.7 26.1 27.38 26.08 1.3 300.0 299.9 4178 0.52 0.10 299.6 0.0 299.6 2001.6
Apr 21-30 58.2 26.92 299.6 57.8 17.38 17.38 0.0 340.4 320.0 4368 0.62 0.33 340.1 0.0 340.1 2010.8
May 01-10 97.7 23.37 340.1 137.8 22.76 22.76 0.0 415.0 377.6 4893 0.89 0.32 414.5 0.0 414.5 2026.1
May 11-20 38.7 1.93 414.5 153.2 24.65 24.65 0.0 428.5 421.5 5276 1.13 0.03 427.4 0.0 427.4 2028.6
May 21-31 31.3 0.00 427.4 158.7 26.47 26.47 0.0 432.2 429.8 5347 1.31 0.00 430.9 0.0 430.9 2029.3
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-51
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Time I P V RV
1
D R S V V
2
A
a
PE Pv V Spill
3
V El
J un 01-10 18.5 3.56 430.9 149.4 15.37 15.37 0.0 434.1 432.5 5370 1.22 0.05 432.9 0.0 432.9 2029.7
J un 11-20 12.3 0.00 432.9 145.2 17.41 17.41 0.0 427.8 430.3 5352 1.26 0.00 426.5 0.0 426.5 2028.5
J un 21-30 43.6 39.94 426.5 170.1 22.47 22.47 0.0 447.6 437.1 5409 1.23 0.60 447.0 0.0 447.0 2032.3
J ul 01-10 32.6 29.46 447.0 179.6 23.93 23.93 0.0 455.7 451.4 5530 1.36 0.45 454.8 0.0 454.8 2033.7
J ul 11-20 11.9 0.00 454.8 166.7 18.31 18.31 0.0 448.4 451.6 5532 1.30 0.00 447.1 0.0 447.1 2032.3
J ul 21-31 27.4 28.89 447.1 174.4 17.98 17.98 0.0 456.5 451.8 5533 1.23 0.45 455.7 0.0 455.7 2033.9
Aug 01-10 23.3 5.69 455.7 178.9 13.05 13.05 0.0 465.9 460.8 5609 1.25 0.09 464.7 0.0 464.7 2035.5
Aug 11-20 24.0 7.30 464.7 188.7 15.60 15.60 0.0 473.1 468.9 5676 1.15 0.12 472.1 0.0 472.1 2036.8
Aug 21-31 18.5 19.69 472.1 190.6 25.41 25.41 0.0 465.2 468.6 5674 1.03 0.31 464.4 0.0 464.4 2035.5
Sep 01-10 4.6 0.00 464.4 169.0 29.08 29.08 0.0 440.0 452.2 5537 1.03 0.00 438.9 0.0 438.9 2030.8
Sep 11-20 41.8 47.69 438.9 180.7 29.60 29.60 0.0 451.1 445.0 5476 0.91 0.73 451.0 0.0 451.0 2033.0
Sep 21-30 15.3 0.00 451.0 166.2 29.48 29.48 0.0 436.7 443.9 5466 0.80 0.00 435.9 0.0 435.9 2030.2
Oct 01-10 8.9 0.00 435.9 144.8 29.15 29.15 0.0 415.7 425.8 5313 0.73 0.00 415.0 0.0 415.0 2026.2
Oct 11-20 8.4 0.00 415.0 123.4 29.02 29.02 0.0 394.4 404.7 5131 0.64 0.00 393.7 0.0 393.7 2022.1
Oct 21-31 10.6 1.91 393.7 104.4 30.04 30.04 0.0 374.3 384.0 4950 0.56 0.03 373.8 0.0 373.8 2018.0
Nov 01-10 7.5 0.00 373.8 81.3 32.91 32.91 0.0 348.4 361.1 4746 0.46 0.00 348.0 0.0 348.0 2012.5
Nov 11-20 6.8 0.00 348.0 54.8 32.23 32.23 0.0 322.6 335.3 4510 0.36 0.00 322.2 0.0 322.2 2006.8
Nov 21-30 14.8 22.48 322.2 37.0 18.31 18.31 0.0 318.7 320.5 4372 0.28 0.27 318.7 0.0 318.7 2006.0
Dec 01-10 17.1 33.21 318.7 35.8 6.87 6.87 0.0 329.0 323.8 4404 0.22 0.41 329.2 0.0 329.2 2008.4
Dec 11-20 14.0 13.27 329.2 43.2 6.93 6.93 0.0 336.2 332.7 4486 0.21 0.17 336.2 0.0 336.2 2010.0
Dec 21-31 15.0 15.94 336.2 51.2 6.55 6.55 0.0 344.7 340.4 4557 0.20 0.20 344.7 0.0 344.7 2011.8
J an 1-
10,73 13.9 0.00 344.7 58.6 9.79 9.79 0.0 348.8 346.7 4615 0.22 0.00 348.5 0.0 348.5 2012.7
J an 11-20 12.8 9.97 348.5 61.4 10.94 10.94 0.0 350.4 349.5 4640 0.24 0.13 350.3 0.0 350.3 2013.0
J an 21-31 12.2 0.00 350.3 62.5 14.11 14.11 0.0 348.4 349.4 4639 0.26 0.00 348.2 0.0 348.2 2012.6
Feb 01-10 11.4 17.21 348.2 59.5 14.31 14.31 0.0 345.2 346.7 4615 0.26 0.22 345.2 0.0 345.2 2011.9
Feb 11-20 9.9 0.00 345.2 55.1 18.50 18.50 0.0 336.6 340.9 4562 0.30 0.00 336.3 0.0 336.3 2010.0
Feb 21-28 18.4 45.97 336.3 54.7 23.67 23.67 0.0 331.0 333.7 4495 0.34 0.58 331.3 0.0 331.3 2008.9
Mar 01-10 33.1 55.37 331.3 64.4 16.47 16.47 0.0 347.9 339.6 4550 0.51 0.70 348.1 0.0 348.1 2012.6
Mar 11-20 19.8 0.00 348.1 67.8 22.99 22.99 0.0 344.8 346.5 4613 0.61 0.00 344.2 0.0 344.2 2011.7
Mar 21-31 31.2 12.45 344.2 75.5 27.46 27.46 0.0 348.0 346.1 4610 0.70 0.16 347.5 0.0 347.5 2012.4
Apr 01-10 47.8 8.26 347.5 95.3 30.29 30.29 0.0 365.0 356.2 4701 0.56 0.11 364.5 0.0 364.5 2016.1
Apr 11-20 48.6 7.11 364.5 113.1 27.38 27.38 0.0 385.7 375.1 4871 0.68 0.10 385.2 0.0 385.2 2020.3
Apr 21-30 28.8 0.00 385.2 113.9 17.38 17.38 0.0 396.6 390.9 5010 0.80 0.00 395.8 0.0 395.8 2022.5
May 01-10 26.4 0.00 395.8 122.1 22.76 22.76 0.0 399.4 397.6 5069 0.92 0.00 398.5 0.0 398.5 2023.0
May 11-20 31.7 31.12 398.5 130.2 24.65 24.65 0.0 405.5 402.0 5108 1.09 0.44 404.9 0.0 404.9 2024.3
May 21-31 25.0 0.00 404.9 129.8 26.47 26.47 0.0 403.4 404.1 5126 1.26 0.00 402.1 0.0 402.1 2023.7
J un 01-10 14.5 0.00 402.1 116.6 15.37 15.37 0.0 401.2 401.7 5105 1.34 0.00 399.9 0.0 399.9 2023.3
J un 11-20 9.4 0.00 399.9 109.3 17.41 17.41 0.0 391.9 395.9 5054 1.37 0.00 390.5 0.0 390.5 2021.4
J un 21-30 16.8 20.96 390.5 107.3 22.47 22.47 0.0 384.8 387.7 4982 1.31 0.29 383.8 0.0 383.8 2020.1
J ul 01-10 101. 28.51 383.8 185.3 23.93 23.93 0.0 461.4 422.6 5286 0.98 0.42 460.8 0.0 460.8 2034.8
J ul 11-20 65.2 35.69 460.8 226.1 18.31 18.31 0.0 507.8 484.3 5803 1.02 0.58 507.3 0.0 507.3 2043.0
J ul 21-31 107. 139.0 507.3 314.5 17.98 17.98 0.0 596.5 551.9 6347 1.06 2.46 597.9 0.0 597.9 2057.6
Aug 01-10 65.9 21.97 597.9 363.8 13.05 13.05 0.0 650.8 624.3 6907 1.28 0.42 649.9 0.0 649.9 2065.3
Aug 11-20 27.6 30.35 649.9 377.5 15.60 15.60 0.0 661.9 655.9 7145 1.20 0.60 661.3 0.0 661.3 2066.9
Aug 21-31 33.3 50.29 661.3 394.6 25.41 25.41 0.0 669.2 665.3 7214 1.09 1.01 669.1 0.0 669.1 2068.0
Sep 01-10 19.5 0.00 669.1 388.6 29.08 29.08 0.0 659.6 664.3 7207 1.16 0.00 658.4 0.0 658.4 2066.5
Sep 11-20 10.7 0.00 658.4 369.1 29.60 29.60 0.0 639.5 648.9 7093 1.02 0.00 638.4 0.0 638.4 2063.6
Sep 21-30 29.2 14.54 638.4 367.6 29.48 29.48 0.0 638.1 638.3 7013 0.88 0.28 637.5 0.0 637.5 2063.5



TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-52
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Table 2.16: Summary of reservoir operation study for Kurram Tangi Dam..
Dam capacity Th.AF = 900 Demand vs. supply summary results
Dead storage (Th AF) = 300
Target cropping intensity (%) and
demand (ThAF)=
135% and
757
Conservation level ft = 2097.8 No. of years when any shortage occur = 5
Dead storage level ft = 2001.6
Average % shortage during shortage
years = 13.8
Starting storage ThAF = 700 Average % shortage during ALL years = 2.2

Year Dam
inflow
ThAF
Irrigation
demand and
supplies
Shortag
e during
the year
(yes =1,
No =0)
Irrigation
Shortage
(ThAF) and
% shortage
on annual
basis
No. of 10-day
short irrigation
supply periods
and %
shortage
during the
shortage
periods
Avrage
surface
area
(Acres)
Annual
Lake
Evaporati
on
(ThAF)
Direct
rain
over
reservoi
r area
(ThAF)
Average
Reservoir volume
(ThAF) and
elevation (ft
amsl) during the
year
Annual
spillage
from the
Dam
(ThAF)
Demand Supply ThAF %
short
Nos. % Vol El
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15
1971
441 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 6,136 30 5 524 2,045 0
1972
748 757 744 1 13 2 4 12 4,915 25 6 381 2,019 0
1973
979 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 5,698 27 9 479 2,036 0
1974
638 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 5,897 30 7 494 2,040 0
1975
781 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 5,220 25 7 416 2,026 0
1976
765 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 5,427 23 7 439 2,031 0
1977
559 757 636 1 121 16 8 52 4,555 18 6 339 2,010 0
1978
786 757 738 1 19 3 2 43 4,927 19 8 383 2,019 0
1979
955 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 5,659 22 9 472 2,036 0
1980
897 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 7,044 29 10 645 2,064 0
1981
1,017 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 8,259 23 14 812 2,087 110
1982
993 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 8,592 32 9 855 2,092 215
1983
1,350 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 8,654 28 16 861 2,093 530
1984
808 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 8,470 28 4 840 2,090 47
1985
541 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 7,697 29 6 729 2,076 0
1986
715 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 6,563 27 7 579 2,054 0
1987
781 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 6,637 28 4 590 2,056 0
1988
749 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 6,235 24 5 537 2,048 0
1989
654 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 5,685 20 5 469 2,036 0
1990
927 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 5,904 25 7 501 2,041 0
1991
1,219 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 7,890 31 10 764 2,080 151
1992
1,295 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 8,717 30 11 870 2,094 495
1993
1,056 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 8,724 33 13 873 2,095 309
1994
813 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 8,572 31 3 855 2,092 9
1995
874 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 8,582 30 6 854 2,092 146
1996
865 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 8,340 29 5 821 2,088 88
1997
910 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 8,408 28 6 831 2,089 92
1998
1,294 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 8,771 26 10 878 2,095 494
1999
621 757 757 0 0 0 0 0 8,159 23 10 794 2,085 15
2000
370 757 738 1 19 3 2 45 5,967 19 3 504 2,040 0
2001
414 757 405 1 352 46 24 61 4,239 16 2 306 2,003 0


Average 833 757 740 0.161 17 2.2 40 62.3 6,921 26 7 635 2,060 87

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-53
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Reservoir Elevation
2000
2010
2020
2030
2040
2050
2060
2070
2080
2090
2100
2110
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
0
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
0
1
R
e
s
e
r
v
o
i
r

E
l
e
v
a
t
i
o
n

(
F
t
)

a
m
s
l

Figure 2.22: KT dam reservoir water levels.
Reservoir Volume
250
300
350
400
450
500
550
600
650
700
750
800
850
900
950
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
0
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
0
1
R
e
s
e
r
v
o
i
r

V
o
l
u
m
e

(
T
h
A
F
)

Figure 2.23: KT dam: reservoir volume.
C: 10-day irrigation shortage %
0
10
20
30
40
50
60
70
80
90
100
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
0
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
0
1
1
0
-
d
a
y

I
r
r
i
g
a
t
i
o
n

s
h
o
r
t
a
g
e

%

Figure 2.24: KT dam: Shortage to target demand.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-54
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Table 2.17: Water availability with various size dams.
Y
e
a
r

Water availability with live storage
(ThAF) of
Water availability arranged in descending order for live
storage (ThAF) of
50 100 200 300 400 500 600 700 800 Sr.
No
Dependab
ility p (%)
50 100 200 300 400 500 600 700 800
71 437 509 608 705 757 757 757 757 757 1 3.13 733 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 757
72 597 647 699 699 744 744 744 744 744 2 6.25 729 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 757
73 679 729 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 3 9.38 725 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 757
74 553 602 688 757 757 757 757 757 757 4 12.50 720 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 757
75 638 688 716 742 757 757 757 757 757 5 15.63 709 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 757
76 671 720 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 6 18.75 707 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 757
77 532 552 588 588 636 636 636 636 636 7 21.88 697 746 757 757 757 757 757 757 757
78 636 686 738 738 738 738 738 738 738 8 25.00 688 738 757 757 757 757 757 757 757
79 697 746 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 9 28.13 683 735 757 757 757 757 757 757 757
80 688 738 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 10 31.25 683 733 757 757 757 757 757 757 757
81 683 733 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 11 34.38 682 733 757 757 757 757 757 757 757
82 683 733 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 12 37.50 679 731 757 757 757 757 757 757 757
83 729 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 13 40.63 678 729 757 757 757 757 757 757 757
84 667 735 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 14 43.75 674 724 757 757 757 757 757 757 757
85 538 541 640 737 757 757 757 757 757 15 46.88 671 724 757 757 757 757 757 757 757
86 613 662 691 691 757 757 757 757 757 16 50.00 670 720 757 757 757 757 757 757 757
87 647 697 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 17 53.13 667 720 757 757 757 757 757 757 757
88 642 692 745 745 754 757 757 757 757 18 56.25 647 697 746 757 757 757 757 757 757
89 620 654 654 654 654 740 757 757 757 19 59.38 642 692 745 757 757 757 757 757 757
90 670 720 746 746 746 746 757 757 757 20 62.50 638 688 738 746 757 757 757 757 757
91 709 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 21 65.63 636 686 738 745 757 757 757 757 757
92 725 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 22 68.75 620 662 716 742 757 757 757 757 757
93 707 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 23 71.88 613 654 699 738 757 757 757 757 757
94 720 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 24 75.00 597 647 691 737 754 757 757 757 757
95 674 724 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 25 78.13 571 639 688 705 746 746 757 757 757
96 682 731 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 26 81.25 553 602 654 699 744 744 757 757 757
97 678 724 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 27 84.38 538 552 640 691 738 740 744 757 757
98 733 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 757 28 87.50 532 541 608 654 654 738 738 744 744
99 571 639 738 757 757 757 757 757 757 29 90.63 437 509 588 588 636 641 738 738 738
00 367 367 367 446 544 641 738 757 757 30 93.75 399 405 405 446 544 636 636 636 636
01 399 405 405 405 405 405 405 482 579 31 96.88 367 367 367 405 405 405 405 482 579
Average annual irrigation releases
No. of years with any deficit supply
632
31
675
25
706
12
719
10
730
8
736
7
740
5
743
4
746
4

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-55
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Dependability of Kurram Tangi Dam for various Live Storage
Capacity (ThAF)
0
5
10
15
20
25
30
35
40
45
50
55
60
65
70
75
80
85
90
95
100
300 400 500 600 700 800 900 1,000 1,100 1,200 1,300 1,400
Annual Available flow (ThAF)
D
e
p
e
n
d
a
b
i
l
i
t
y

/

e
x
c
e
e
d
a
n
c
e

(
%
)
No dam
Dam=50
Dam=100
Dam=200
Dam=300
Dam=400
Dam=500
Dam=600
Dam=700
Dam=800
Figure 2.25: Improvement of water availability for different live storage capacities of the dam as
determined by reservoir operation.
2.10 RESERVOIR MAXIMUM MINIMUM RULE CURVE
Reservoir inflow varies over the years. The releases are required to be tailored to the
inflows and the storage available in the reservoir. Unplanned releases could lead to situation
where full demand is met during part of a crop season and very large shortage result in
remaining crop season. Crop are very sensitive to water shortages during later part of the
growing season. Thus it is required that any anticipated shortage should be spread equally for
the whole growing season. This requires that rules be framed to regulate releases (maximum
and minimum) during different periods/months.
These rules are defined for seasonal dams in terms of maximum and minimum
reservoir level during different months. These rules are developed/optimized from reservoir
operation studies. The minimum rules are to ensure temporal equity of water releases and
maximum rules are set to ensure reservoir filling and flood handling particularly during later
part of reservoir filling.
For a carryover dam these rules are defined differently. The reservoir releases for a
crop season are adjusted in view of the reservoir levels before the start of the season. The
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-56
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
releases are curtailed by a factor corresponding to various reservoir levels, e.g. for KT dam
the releases are reduced by 10, 15 and 20% for reservoir elevation of 2035, 2025 and 2015 ft
amsl. Thus shortages are reduced from maximum of 80% in 10-day period (Fig. 2.24) to only
10 to 20% (Fig. 2.26).
0
10
20
30
40
50
60
70
80
90
100
J
a
n

0
1
-
1
0
,
7
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
7
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
8
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
0
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
1
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
2
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
3
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
4
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
5
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
6
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
7
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
8
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
9
9
J
a
n

1
-
1
0
,
0
0
1
0
-
d
a
y

I
r
r
i
g
a
t
i
o
n

s
h
o
r
t
a
g
e

%

Figure 2.26. Effect of reservoir release control on seasonal shortages.
2.11 WAVE HEIGHT (USBR P-271)
Free board to prevent overtopping of embankment by abnormal and severe waves actions of
rare occurrences created due to unusual sustained winds of high velocity.
Wave considered coincident with design inflow flood.
Wave height depends on: 1. Wind velocity, 2. Duration of the wind, 3. The fetch, 4.
Depth of the water, 5. Width of the reservoir
Wave height at approaching dam may be altered due to increasing water depth or
decrease of reservoir width.
Wave run-up affected by slope angle, surface texture, angle of wave train.
Wind energy lost in raising the water up the sloping face of the dam.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-57
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Rough riprap reduce wave run-up to 1.5 of wave height, concrete dam increases wave
run up
Require judgment in selection of wave height. Wave height as under (ft)
50 mph 75 mph 100 mph
Fetch (miles) Wave height (ft) for wind Velocity (miles/hr) of
1 2.7 3.0 -
2.5 3.2 3.6 3.9
5 3.7 4.3 4.8
10 4.5 5.4 6.1
Wind of 100 miles/hr velocity can occur at all places, unless geographically protected,
winds of 75 or 50 miles/hr is very common for most places.
Increase free board by 1.5 for wind run-up riprap slope
Provide normal free board for 100 mile/hr wind; Provide minimum free board for
wind of 50 mile/hr. Recommended free board (for V = 100 mile/hr)
Fetch (miles) Normal FB Minimum FB
< 1 4 3
1 5 4
2.5 6 5
5 8 6
10 10 7
Increase above free board by 50% if smooth surface is provided, e.g. by concrete
Parapet will above dam crest may be provided to contain wind induced waves, e.g.
KT dam is provided a 3 ft high parapet wall above dam crest.
Golze (p-137). Steady winds over a water body generate waves. Wave tide is given as:
S = V
2
Wave run up is the vertical height a deep water wave will run up the dam face. From Fig
2.27, H
F / 1400 D, where S = wave setup (ft) above reference level, V = wind velocity
(mile/hr), F = fetch or water distance (mile) [taken usually twice of actual], and D = mean
reservoir depth.
s
= 0.0026 F
0.47
, and time period = 0.45 F
0.28
Minimum 5 ft free bpard is taken for major embankments, and less for others.
/ V.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-58
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
2.12 RESERVOIR SEDIMENTATION
(Ref: USBR DESIGN OF SMALL DAMS, Appendix-H, Pages 767-796; GOLZE;
HANDBOOK OF DAM ENGINEERING Pages 142-146)
Rivers carries a lot of sediments especially in the monsoon season. The amount of
sediments depend on many factors, some are as under.
Climate, particular annual rainfall and resulting runoff.
Vegetal cover, which is dependent on rainfall
Surface geology and soil cover
Land and river slopes
Land use
2.13 EFFECTS OF RESERVOIRS ON SEDIMENT ACCUMULATIONS:
Whenever a dam is built across a river, retention of water borne sediments can be
expected. Accumulation of the sediments in the dam over time can occupy storage space that
was provided to carryout the basic functions of the dam and reservoir. To extend useful life
of the dam, the planned storage of the dam is increased by an amount necessary for the
storage of the sediments entering the dam during its planned life.
Factors that determine the rate and total volume of sediment accumulation in a
reservoir are:
Average sediment load carried by a river (expressed as dry weight, tons)
Periods of abnormally high or low runoff which may result in wide variations
from the average sediment load.
Ratio between reservoir capacity and the annual volume of inflow, a measure
of trap efficiency.
Grain size of sediments, sediment size gradation, sediment unit weight
Method of reservoir operation.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-59
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
2.13 ESTIMATING SEDIMENT ACCUMULATION IN RESERVOIRS:
Two methods are used: (1). Sampling of suspended sediments; establishment of
sediment-discharge relation, computation of total annual sediment load in the river, and
estimation of trap efficiency. (2). Results of surveys of sediment accumulations in existing
reservoirs, expressed in tons or acre feet per sq. mile per year. The average annual sediment
load may be set accordingly.
2.14.1 Sediment Estimation Based On Sediment Sampling.
The suspended and bed load sediments are measured by sampling for the known flow.
Measurements are made often throughout the year. A general sediment rating curve is
developed for each period or year showing sediment load versus river flow. The sediment
rating curve is used to compute the total sediment load for an average year from known flow
record or by use of flow duration curve. The sediment measurements and estimation is done
for long time period. The bed load may be estimated by using various formulas (e.g.
Schoklitsch formula, Meyer-Peter Muller formula) in combination with flow duration curve.
Else the bed load may be taken as 10 to 20% of the suspended load. The size gradation of the
suspended and bed load is based on measured samples showing percentage of clay, silt and
sand grains.
The average sediment load of the Kurram River at Thal is estimated by SWHP of
WAPDA as 3.77 Million Short Tons per year (MST/yr) (Table 2.18, Figs. 2.27, 2.28). About
86% of the sediments were observed for monsoon period of 4 months (April-September). The
annual sediment yield may be expressed as 1.48 Ac.ft. per sq. mile of drainage area. The
sediment concentration is 0.383% (by weight) or 3,830 ppm. The maximum observed
concentration was 142,000 ppm and minimum observed concentration was 2 ppm. The
computed maximum concentration was 47,800 ppm. At average discharge, the suspended
sediment consists of about 6% sand, 70% silt and 24% clay (actually varies during and over
the years). SWHP estimated the unit weight of fresh deposits of this sediment as about 58.3
lbs per cft.
If sediments measurements are not available at the dam site, then sediment is
estimated from sediment measurements at any u/s or d/s location on the basis of sediment
load per unit area or per unit flow volume (assuming that sediment generation potential being
same for the two sites). The sediment load may be estimated at required site in proportion to
average annual flow at the two sites. Thus S
2
= S
1
x Q
2
/Q
1
. The sediment load of Kurram
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-60
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
River was measured at Thal, which is located 10 miles u/s of the dam site. Also there were no
measurements of sediment for the Kaitu River. The sediment load of the Kurram River flows
between Thal and Kurram Tangi Dam site and of the diversions of Kaitu River through
Kaitu-Kurram Feeder was estimated on the basis of annual flow volumes. The sediment load
of Kaitu River was considered same as for Kurram River. The bed load is considered as 10%
of the suspended load. Thus total sediment inflow in Kurram Tangi Dam is determined on
area basis as under.
Kurram River suspended sediments at Thal = 3.77 MST/yr
Kurram River suspended sediments at KT dam site = 3.77 * (628/574) = 4.12 MST/yr
Kurram River bed load @ 15% = 0.62 MST/yr
Total sediment load of Kurram River at dam site = 4.74 MST/yr
Kaitu-Kurram Feeder suspended load = 3.77 * (180/574) = 1.19 MST/yr
Kaitu-Kurram Feeder bed load = 0 (a silt ejector is to be installed at feeder head)
Total sediment load entering Kurram Tangi Dam = 5.93 MST/yr
(Suspended = 4.12 + 1.19 = 5.31, bed load = 0.62 MST/year)
Gomal zam dam has much higher sediment load (~ 12 MST/year) in spite of smaller
catchment area due to nature of geologic formation and land cover.
Table 2.18: Historic sediment load of Kurram River at Thal.
Year Yearly
sediment
load
(m.s.t).
Monsoon
load Apr-
Sept
(m.s.t.)
Monsoon
load as %
of Whole
Year
Year Yearly
sediment
load
(m.s.t).
Monsoon
load Apr-
Sept
(m.s.t.)
Monsoon
load as %
of Whole
Year
1968 2.55 2.47 97 1984 4.74 4.62 96
1969 1.43 1.27 89 1985 0.99 0.89 90
1970 1.4 1.38 98 1986 4.72 4.08 76
1970 3.99 3.96 99 1987 3.5 4.66 76
1972 7.05 6.17 87 1988 4.87 3.93 81
1973 10.4 9.38 90 1989 1.39 1.14 82
1974 4.49 1.31 53 1990 5.52 5.3 96
1975 4.65 4.62 99 1991 10.7 0.6 99
1976 5.13 4.22 82 1992 4.87 4.7 97
1977 1.01 0.75 74 1993 6.45 6.35 98
1978 4.05 4.03 99 1994 5.04 4.93 98
1979 1.01 0.94 93 1995 4.56 4.15 84
1980 3.17 4.48 78 1996 4.27 1.68 74
1981 1.74 1.02 57 1997 0.82 0.7 86
1982 1.56 1.38 88 1998 4.49 4.26 91
1983 10 9.94 99 Average 3.77 3.24 86

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-61
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Kurram River at Thal: Historic Sediment and Flow Data
0
100
200
300
400
500
600
700
800
900
1000
1100
1200
1
9
7
1
1
9
7
3
1
9
7
5
1
9
7
7
1
9
7
9
1
9
8
1
1
9
8
3
1
9
8
5
1
9
8
7
1
9
8
9
1
9
9
1
1
9
9
3
1
9
9
5
1
9
9
7
A
n
n
u
a
l

F
l
o
w

(
T
h
A
F
)
0
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
S
e
d
i
m
e
n
t

L
o
a
d

M
S
T
/
y
r
Sediment Load
Annual Flow
Monsoon Flow

Figure 2.27: Historic sediment data of Kurram River at Thal.

Kurram River at Thal: Sediment -Flow Relation
0
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
0 200 400 600 800 1000 1200
Annual Flow (ThAF)
S
e
d
i
m
e
n
t

L
o
a
d

(
M
S
T
)

Figure 2.28: Kurram River at Thal: Flow vs. sediment load.

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-62
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation

PATRIND HYDROPOWER PROJECT
SUSPENDED SEDIMENT RATING
1
10
100
1000
10000
100000
1000000
10000000
1 10 100 1000
Flow Discharge (Cumecs)
S
e
d
i
m
e
n
t

l
o
a
d

(
T
o
n
s
)

Figure 2.29: Sediment load for Kunhar River at Ghari Habibullah.
PATRIND HYDROPOWER PROJECT
GRADATION CURVE FOR SUSPENDED SEDIMENT
AT GARHI HABIB ULLAH
0
5
10
15
20
25
30
35
40
45
50
55
60
65
70
75
80
85
90
95
100
0.001 0.01 0.1 1
Sediment Size (mm)
%

p
a
s
s
i
n
g

/

F
i
n
e
r
16-10-1984 10/10/1984
13-10-1984 17-9-84
4/9/1984 13-10-1984
18-9-1984 19-9-1984
19-1-1984 11/2/1984
2/11/1983

Figure 2.30: Sediment size gradation for Kunhar River at Ghari Habibullah.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-63
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
The particle size of the all suspended sediments are considered same as found at Thal (6%
sand, 70% silt and 24% clay) while the bed load is considered as 10% silt and 90% sand. The
particle size of total sediment is weighted and estimated as under:
Suspended Bedload Weighted
Sand (> 62 ) 6% 90% 15% (=0.06*5.31+0.9*0.62)/5.93
Silt (4 to 62 ) 70% 10% 64%
Clay (< 4 ) 24% 0% 21%
2.14.2 Sediment Estimation Based On Survey Of Existing Reservoirs.
The sediment load may also be estimated from a record of sediment accumulation in
the existing reservoirs. The volume of sediment accumulated over a number of years is
measured by topographic and hydrographic surveys. The depth of reservoir bottom at any
point below the water surface is measured by sounding while traversing the reservoir on a
boat. For this purpose section pillars are placed along the reservoir rim to form a straight line
during hydrographic survey. In addition samples of deposits are taken to measure dry weight
and size gradation. Comparison of reservoir bottom level with earlier or first survey provides
the depth of sediments over the intervening period. However considerations must be given to
the following.
The observed record must be from a drainage area that is equivalent in size to the
project area or an adjustment of the unit yield must be made.
The hydrologic characteristics of the drainage areas being compared should be
similar, particularly the annual rainfall.
The physical characteristics of the two areas must essentially be the same including
topography, geology and soils, vegetal cover, and land use.
The trap efficiency, or the capacity-inflow ratio of the two reservoirs must be same.
The existing record of sediment accumulation must be at least 10 years long. If only a
short record is available for comparison, a regional hydrologic investigation must be
made to determine whether the sediment record was obtained in a period of high,
average or low runoff/flows.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-64
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
2.15 SEDIMENT TRAPP IN THE DAM:
All the sediments entering into reservoir do not get deposited; some sediments are
carried away with the out flowing water. The trap efficiency defines the proportion of the
incoming sediments being deposited in the reservoir. The trap efficiency is defined as the
ratio of the quantity of the deposited sediments to the total sediments inflow. This primarily
depends upon the sediment particle fall velocity, the rate of flow through the reservoir, and
the retention time.
Reservoir trap efficiency is empirically estimated and based on measured sediments
deposits in a large number of reservoirs. The Brune curve (Fig. 2.31) is most often used to
determine trap efficiency and is considered as function of ratio of reservoir capacity to inflow
(V/Q). The reservoirs sediment trapping efficiency (T
E
The mean curve for normal ponded reservoirs approximated as:
) is given in terms of capacity inflow
ratio which is the ratio of the reservoir capacity (V) to the average annual inflow (Q), i.e.
V/Q.
T
E
= 97.5 (for V/Q > 1.0); and T
E
OR
= 97.5 + 10.5 Log V/Q (for 0.1 V/Q 1.0)
T
E
= 97.5 2.2914 (Log V/Q) 14.191 (Log V/Q)
2
Actually the trap efficiency could differ by 10% for lower V/Q to 2% for higher V/Q
values.
for 0.005 V/Q 1.0
Brune Sediment Trap Efficiency Curve
0
10
20
30
40
50
60
70
80
90
100
0.001 0.01 0.1 1
Capacity-Inflow Ratio (V/Q)
T
r
a
p

E
f
f
i
c
i
e
n
c
y

(
%
)

Figure 2.31: Average reservoir sediment trap efficiency curve (Brune curve).
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-65
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
The capacity V of the reservoir will decrease with time due to sediment deposition.
Therefore for same annual inflow Q the trap efficiency will decrease due to decrease of V/Q.
The sediment deposition in the reservoir is computed over small intervals, e.g. 5 year, during
which V may be considered constant.
For Kurram Tangi Dam, V/Q = 900,000/808,000 = 1.11, and T
E
= 97.5%. Thus
97.5% of the all incoming sediments will be trapped in the reservoir, causing a continuous
decline in the reservoir capacity over the years. As the reservoir capacity become smaller
with lower V/Q ratio, then trap efficiency will continuously decrease each year (Table 2.19).
The trapping efficiency varied from 97.5% for 1
st
2.16 UNIT WEIGHT OF THE DEPOSITED SEDIMENT
year to 86.3% after 100 years.
The sediment estimate of weight per time (e.g. million short tons per year) is
converted into volume by knowing the sediment unit weight (e.g. lb/cft). The various sizes of
particle are classified as clay (less than 0.004 mm), silt (0.004 to 0.0625 mm) and sand
(0.0625 to 2.0 mm). The unit weight of the fresh deposited sediments is dependent by the
proportion of the sediments of clay, silt and sand sizes. The sediments deposited in the
reservoir get compacted to a denser form over many years due to its self-weight. There are
several factors influencing the weight of the deposited and compacted sediment as (1) manner
in which reservoir is to be operated, (2) texture and size of particles, (3) compaction or
consolidation rate, (4) other factors (density currents, thalweg slope of stream, vegetation in
head water areas).
The reservoir operation is most influential factor. Sediments exposed for long periods
due to reservoir drawdown are considerably consolidated. Reservoir operation are classified
of following types:
Type I: Sediment remain always submerged or nearly submerged (small drawdown)
e.g. Bunji hydropower project dam
Type II: Normally moderate to considerable reservoir drawdown, e.g. Tarbela dam
Type III: Reservoir normally empty
Type IV: Riverbed sediments
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-66
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation

Table 2.19: Sediment unit weight and deposition with time.
K = 2.916 Average.sediment/yr= 5.926 MST Av. Flow Q = 833 ThAF
T
(Years)
Sediment unit
weight lb/cft
V/Q
ratio
Trap
efficiency
%
Time Sediment Load (MST)
Cum.
Sediment
deposit
ThAF
Final
Storage
capacity V
W CW
T
Inflow
T
Traped Cum. Mass
0 67.34 67.34 916
10 70.26 69.31 1.10 97.50 59.3 57.8 57.8 38 878
20 71.13 70.07 1.05 97.50 59.3 57.8 115.6 76 840
30 71.65 70.53 1.01 97.50 59.3 57.8 173.3 113 803
40 72.01 70.87 0.96 97.33 59.3 57.7 231.0 150 766
50 72.29 71.13 0.92 97.12 59.3 57.6 288.6 186 730
60 72.53 71.35 0.88 96.90 59.3 57.4 346.0 223 693
70 72.72 71.53 0.83 96.66 59.3 57.3 403.3 259 657
80 72.89 71.69 0.79 96.42 59.3 57.1 460.4 295 621
90 73.04 71.84 0.75 96.16 59.3 57.0 517.4 331 585
100 73.17 71.96 0.70 95.89 59.3 56.8 574.2 366 550
110 73.29 72.08 0.66 95.60 59.3 56.7 630.9 402 514
120 73.40 72.19 0.62 95.30 59.3 56.5 687.3 437 479
130 73.50 72.29 0.57 94.98 59.3 56.3 743.6 472 444
140 73.60 72.38 0.53 94.63 59.3 56.1 799.7 507 409
150 73.69 72.46 0.49 94.25 59.3 55.9 855.6 542 374
160 73.77 72.54 0.45 93.85 59.3 55.6 911.2 577 339
170 73.84 72.62 0.41 93.40 59.3 55.4 966.5 611 305
180 73.92 72.69 0.37 92.92 59.3 55.1 1021.6 645 271
190 73.98 72.75 0.32 92.37 59.3 54.7 1076.3 679 237
200 74.05 72.82 0.28 91.76 59.3 54.4 1130.7 713 203
210 74.11 72.88 0.24 91.06 59.3 54.0 1184.7 746 170
220 74.17 72.94 0.20 90.24 59.3 53.5 1238.2 779 137
230 74.23 72.99 0.16 89.25 59.3 52.9 1291.0 812 104
240 74.28 73.04 0.12 88.01 59.3 52.2 1343.2 844 72
250 74.33 73.09 0.09 86.32 59.3 51.2 1394.3 876 40
The initial deposited weight of the sediment deposit (W
i
W
) is determined on the basis of
proportion (P) and unit weight (W) of different size particle (c = clay, m = silt (medium), s =
sand) as:
i
= W
c
P
c
+ W
m
P
m
+ W
s
P
where
s

Pc, Pm, Ps = proportion of clay, silt and sand particles in the sediments, respectively.
Wc, Wm, Ws = unit weight of clay, silt, sand respectively according to type of dam.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-67
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
The unit weight of different particles is given as function of dam type on operation basis as
(lbs/cft):
Table 2.20: Unit weight (lb/cft) of sediments constituents.
Reservoir type clay W silt W
c
sand W
m

s

I 26 70 97
II 35 71 97
III 40 72 97
IV 60 73 97
Example: The Kurram Tangi Dam reservoir was classified for reservoir operation as of Type-
II category. The particle weight for category-II reservoir operation is taken as W = 35, 71 and
97 lb/cft for clay, silt and sand respectively. Thus initial sediment weight is determined as
under. (Proportion of clay, silt and sand as 35, 64 and 15%, respectively).
W
i
The sediment volume is determined from the total sediment load and the unit
sediment weight as sediment volume = sediment weight (lbs) unit sediment weight (lb/cft).
The average volume of fresh sediment deposits for KT Dam is estimated as:
= 35 0.21 + 71 0.64 + 97 0.15 = 67.34 lbs/cft
(5,930,000 ST 2000 lb/ST) (67.34 lb/cft 43,560 ft
3
The unit weight of the deposited sediment will increase each year due to compaction
of the sediment it remains in the reservoir according to the equation
/acre-feet) 4,040 Acre-Feet/ year.
W
T
= W
i
+ K Log
10
where W
T
T
= unit weight after T years of compaction, W
i
Table 2.21: K factor for sediment constituents.
= the initial unit weight, and K = a
constant depending on the type of the reservoir and size analysis of the sediment. The factor
K is as under.
Reservoir type Clay K Silt K
c
Sand K
m

s

I 16.0 5.7 0.0
II 8.4 1.8 0.0
III 0.0 0.0 0.0
The overall K factor is determined as: K = K
c
P
c
+ K
m
P
m
+ K
s
P
s
K = 8.4 0.21 + 1.8 0.64 + 0.0 0.15 = 2.916
. e.g. The factor K
for KT category-II dam (K = 8.4, 1.8, and 0.0 for clay, silt and sand, respectively) is
determined (for sediment with 21, 64 and 15% of clay, silt and sand respectively) as:
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-68
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
The sediment unit weight after, say 50 years, will be as: 67.34 + 2.916 Log 50 = 72.29 lb/cft.
Sediments are deposited in the reservoir in each of T years of operation and each
years deposits will have different compaction time and sediment unit weight. The average
sediment unit weight after T years (of cumulative all sediments deposited from 1
st
CW
through T
years) is determined as:
T
= W
i
For KT Dam the sediment unit weight W
+ 0.4343 K [T/(T-1) Ln T 1]
T
The sediments deposited over a period T and the reservoir final volume is then
determined as: S
after, say 50 years, will be as: 67.34 + 0.4343 *
2.916 [50/49 Ln 50 1} = 71.13 lb/cft. The cumulative sediment unit weight for different
years T is calculated for KT dam in Table 2.19.
T
= S
A
T T
E
/ CW
T
and V
T
= V
I
- S
where S
T

T
= sediment deposition at time T, S
A
= average annual sediment load (MST), V
T
=
reservoir volume at time T, V
I
2.17 SEDIMENT DISTRIBUTION WITHIN A RESERVOIR
= reservoir volume at time T-T. The sediment deposition and
reservoir volume for KT dam are given in Table 2.19.
A sediment particle is affected in settlement by horizontal force due to water
movement and vertical force due to gravity. A particle will remain in suspension as long as
turbulent forces equal or exceed the force of gravity. When the flow enters the reservoir the
increased cross sectional area results in decrease of velocity and turbulence until it become
ineffective in transporting the sediment and the particles get deposited. The sediment
deposition is not confined to lower storage increments (dead storage space), rather it get
deposited at all levels in the reservoir below the normal conservation level.
2.17.1 Reservoir shape factor
The distribution of sediment deposition at different levels depends upon the shape
classification of the reservoir on the basis of slope (m) of reservoir storage versus depth graph
(on a log-log paper). The slope m also be determined as under (Volume V in acre feet and
depth d in ft):
m = (Log V
2
Log V
1
) / (Log d
2
Log d
1
The reservoirs are classified according to shape as under.
)
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-69
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Table 2.22: Reservoir classification according to shape.
Reservoir type Classification Slope m
I Lake 3.5 4.5
II Flood plain Foothill 2.5 3.5
III Hill 1.5 2.5
IV Gorge 1.0 1.5
KT Dam: Depth-volume Curve
y =2.18878x
0.35826
R
2
=0.99966
10
100
1000
1000 10000 100000 1000000
Volume (AF)
H
e
i
g
h
t

(
f
t
)

a
b
o
v
e

d
a
t
u
m

o
f

1
8
0
0

f
t

Figure 2.32: Shape factor m = dV/dh for reservoir classification.
For KT dam m was calculated as m = (Log 100,000 Log 1000) / (Log 136.35 Log 26.31)
= 2.80 (Fig. 2.32): and thus dam was termed as of Flood plain Foothill type II dam.
The sediment depth wise distribution in the reservoir may be determined by following
two methods. (1) By using Reservoir storage design curves, and (2). By using Reservoir area
design curves.
2.17.2 Sediment Depth Wise Distribution By Reservoir Storage Design Curves
The silt deposition at various depths is given for different category of dams in terms
of % sediment deposition versus % reservoir depth (see Figure H-7 of USBR Design of Small
Dams, page-781). The silt deposition at any depth is given as under (but not exceeding
original storage volume at the depth) as:
Sediment volume = Total sediment * % sediment at the given depth
The % sediment deposition at different depths for various shape category dams is given in
Table 2.23 and shown in Figure 2.33.

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-70
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Table 2.23: Depth wise sediment deposition according to reservoir shape.:
Percent relative
depth (%d)
Percent sediment deposition below %d depth for dam shape
category
I II III IV
0 0 0 0 0
0.05 0.1 1.51 1.51 21.5
0.1 0.2 4.02 5.1 35.5
0.2 1.2 11.45 18.3 53.1
0.3 4.5 21.5 35.2 66.8
0.4 11.5 33.5 53.8 77.8
0.5 20.8 46.3 70.8 86.5
0.6 33.2 59.5 84.5 92.1
0.7 48.5 72.4 92.5 95.8
0.8 66.5 84.1 97.5 98.1
0.9 86.2 93.6 99.5 99.6
0.95 94.5 97.5 99.8 99.9
1 100 100 100 100
Depth wise relative sediment distribution
0
5
10
15
20
25
30
35
40
45
50
55
60
65
70
75
80
85
90
95
100
0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 0.7 0.8 0.9 1
Depth (fraction)
%

s
e
d
i
m
e
n
t

d
e
p
o
s
i
t
i
o
n
Type I dam
Typr II dam
Type III dam
Type IV dam

Figure 2.33: Depth wise relative sediment deposition for different shape category dams.
(USBR 2001. pp-H-7)

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-71
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
For KT dam the total sediment volume for 50 years is 186,000 acre feet. The normal
conservation level NCL and dead storage depth are as 295 and 196.6 ft at elevation of 2100.0
ft 2001.6 ft amsl respectively. Thus the dead storage depth is 66.7% of total depth. The
sediment deposition below dead storage depth (at 66.7% depth) is about 68.1% for shape
category II dam. Thus sediment deposited below dead storage level = 0.681 * 186,000 =
126,000 acre feet against 300,000 acre of original dead storage capacity. The balance of
186,000 126,000 = 60,000 acre feet of sediment (31.9% of total sediments) are deposited
above the dead storage level in the live storage space and thus infringe into the live storage
space and reduce usable storage of the dam. Thus distribution of sediment deposit can also be
worked for other or all depth/levels. Thus after 50 years the dead storage will reduce to
300,000 126,000 = 174,000 AF and live storage will reduce to 618,000 60,000 = 558,000
AF. The storage (live, dead and gross) space for KT dam available after various years of
reservoir operation is worked out in Table 2.24 and variations are shown in the Figure 2.34.
The reservoir live storage will decrease from present value of 616 ThAF to 556, 499, 374,
204 and 40 ThAF after 50, 100, 150, 200 and 250 years of reservoir operation if present rate
of sediment continues unaltered. The reservoir elevation-volume relationship will vary
considerably over the years. The change in the elevation-volume relationship over the years is
shown in Figure 2.35.

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-72
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation

Table 2.24 Sediment deposition comput ations.
T (Years) Sediments deposited ThAF Storage Capacity Th.AF
Total Live Dead Total Live Dead
0 % Deposition in dead

68 916 616 300
10 38 12 26 878 604 274
20 76 24 51 840 592 249
30 113 36 77 803 580 223
40 150 48 102 766 568 198
50 186 60 127 730 556 173
60 223 71 151 693 545 149
70 259 83 176 657 533 124
80 295 95 200 621 521 100
90 331 106 225 585 510 75
100 366 117 249 550 499 51
110 402 129 273 514 487 27
120 437 140 297 479 476 3
130 472 172 300 444 444 0
140 507 207 300 409 409 0
150 542 242 300 374 374 0
160 577 277 300 339 339 0
170 611 311 300 305 305 0
180 645 345 300 271 271 0
190 679 379 300 237 237 0
200 713 413 300 203 203 0
210 746 446 300 170 170 0
220 779 479 300 137 137 0
230 812 512 300 104 104 0
240 844 544 300 72 72 0
250 876 576 300 40 40 0

TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-73
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
Sediment Deposition in Kurram Tangi Dam
0
100
200
300
400
500
600
700
800
900
1000
0 25 50 75 100 125 150 175 200 225 250
Years after operation
A
v
a
i
l
a
b
l
e

S
t
o
r
a
g
e

c
a
p
a
c
i
t
y

(
T
h
A
F
)
Total storage ThAF
Live storage ThAF
Dead storage ThAF

Figure 2.34: Reservoir live and dead storage capacity after silt deposition.
KURRAM TANGI DAM: STORAGE CAPACITY VS. RESERVOIR SEDIMENTATION
1820
1840
1860
1880
1900
1920
1940
1960
1980
2000
2020
2040
2060
2080
2100
2120
0 50 100 150 200 250 300 350 400 450 500 550 600 650 700 750 800 850 900 950 100
0
Storage ThAF
E
l
e
v
a
t
i
o
n

F
t

a
m
s
l
Origional
T=25 years
T=50 years
T=75 years
T=100 years
T=125 years
T=150 years
T=175 years
T=200 years
Dead Storage Level = 2001.6 ft

Figure 2.35: Reservoir storage capacity curves after sedimentation.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-74
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
2.18 DELTA DEPOSITION
The sediment laden river water when enters the reservoir experiences sudden
enlargement of flow area and corresponding decrease of flow velocity. This causes all of the
coarse sediments of suspended load and bed load to settle out of floatation/bed rolling. This
results in the formation of a delta at the mouth of the reservoir. Delta is defined by top set
slope, fore set slope, bottom set slope, and density currents. The pivot point is intersection of
top set and fore set slopes. The delta advances with time becoming closer to the dam body.
As reservoir draws down, the inflow causes advancement of the delta. The delta is weak
deposit of sediments without any binding force between the particles. Any seismic activity,
particularly at low reservoir levels, may result in immediate liquification of the delta which
will move towards the dam. The dam may fail on account of the thrust of the moving delta
deposits. Thus formation of delta is monitored strictly. The dam is operated in a way which
may not excessively expose the delta.














Pivot point
Topset slope
Foreset slope
Bottomset slope
Density currents
Normal pond level
Original river bed level
Origional thalweg slope
Figure 2.36: Delta formation at head of reservoir.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-75
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
References
KTDC 2004. KURRAM TANGI DAM FEASIBILITY REPORT (Draft). Prepared by
Kurram Tangi Dam Consultants for Wapda, Lahore.
Morris, Gregory L. and Jiahua Fan. 1998. RESERVOIR SEDIMENTATION HANDBOOK
(Design and management of dams, reservoirs and watersheds for sustainable use).
McGraw Hill. New Yor. (Cewre library Accession # 6007).
NESPAK. 1988. Gandiali Dam Planning Report. National Engineering Services (NESPAK).
Lahore.
NESPAK. 1992. Mirani Dam Multipurpose Project: Project Planning Report. National
Engineering Services (NESPAK). Lahore. pp 2.3.
SDO. 1992. Project Completion Report of Jammergal Dam. Small Dams Organization,
Irrigation and Power Dept., Govt. of Punjab. Rawalpindi.
Tariq, Ata-ur-Rehman. 2004. Hydrologic Assessment of Small Dams in Potohar Area: Case
Study of Jammargal Dam. Paper presented at 69
th
Tariq, Muhammad. 2000. Hydrologic Assessment of Small Dams in Potohar Area: Case
Study of Jammargal Dam. M.Sc. Thesis. Centre of Excellence in Water Resources
Engineering, University of Engineering and Technology, Lahore.
annual session of Pakistan
Engineering Congress (April 6-8, 2004), Lahore. Paper No. 647. Proceedings pp:623-
645.
USBR. 1992. Flood Hydrology Manual. U.S. Department of the Interior, Bureau of
Reclamation, Denver.
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-76
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation
TARIQ. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 2-77
Chapter-2 Dam Hydrology and Sedimentation

Figure 2.37: Reservoir bed profile by lead line or sounding disk method (Source:
http://www.usace.army.mil/publications/eng-manuals/em1110-2-1003/c-8.pdf)

Freeboard Design
An important aspect of dam design is the nature of the freeboard - the specified vertical
distance between the reservoir water level and the top of the dam. This is primarily to provide
a margin of safety against flood events but is also essential to prevent splashing or occasional
overtopping of a dam embankment by extreme waves. Factors which should be considered in
determining the size of the freeboard include:
meteorological factors - wind characteristics, fetch;
hydrological/hydraulic factors - flood, reservoir and wave characteristics, spillway
and outlet flow rating curves;
downstream flood risks;
structural factors - type, slope, surface, settlement of embankment, spillway and
outlet characteristics etc;
geophysical hazards.
Source: http://www.worldbank.org/html/fpd/em/hydro/fd.stm

Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 1
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

Chapter-3
GEOLOGICAL AND GEOTECHNICAL STUDIES
FOR DAM DESIGN
1
3.1 PURPOSES

Geology of the dam refers to the study and investigation of foundation materials, over
which the dam will be placed. Detailed geologic is directed to establish ground conditions in
terms of strength, durability, susceptibility to weathering, seepage flows, geologic structure,
stratigraphy, faulting, foliation/folding, jointing for the dam site itself and the sites for other
structures such as reservoir, spillways, diversion tunnel, outlet works, power house, etc.
General objectives of the geologic investigations are:
To determine whether the dam foundation has sufficient strength and durability to
support the type of dam proposed.
To establish whether foundation is watertight.
To set extent of need of any foundation improvement/treatment as curtain
grouting or blanket grouting.
To evaluate dam foundation against probable settlement and deformation.
To determine seepage pattern, seepage quantity, and pore water pressures in
foundations.
To establish containment integrity of reservoir basin (is storage area watertight?),
presence of cavernous rock openings (in limestone) leading to leaks of water from
the reservoirs to underground caverns and adjacent basins.
To check stability of reservoir rim/ week joints against landslide along reservoir
rim (leading to wave of water overtopping of dam crest when dam is full.
To find sources/locations, nature, suitability of construction materials in nearby
places which will be needed to build the dam.
Dams are usually founded over rocks. Most rocks have adequate strength but their
weakness is in the orientation and dip of discontinuities relative to loading from the dam, as
well as in fill material and depth of weathering in such discontinuities. (Fig. 3.1)



1
Sources:
Wahlstrom (1974); USBR (1967); USBR (2001); Novak et al. (1985)
http : // homepages . ihug . com . au/~richardw/ page 19.html, page25.html, page26.html
www.dur.ac.uk/~des0www4/cal/dams/geol/topo.htm
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 2
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies























Figure 3.1: Foundation geology along the dam axis.
The geological services are required for the engineering of a large dam in the following
areas: (1) The safety of the dam on its foundations; (2) The water tightness of the reservoir
basin; (3) The availability of natural materials for its construction.
The engineering geologist is a key member of an engineering team, since he will
ensure the feasibility of the project, continuing through the design stage and terminating only
when construction has either proved that geological conditions revealed are in conformity
with the premises adopted in design, or he has made possible proper evaluation of any
conditions not foreseen in the earlier stages.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 3
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

The safety, viability and cost of a dam are all dependent upon geology. Most rocks
have adequate strength but their weakness is in the orientation and dip of discontinuities
relative to the loading from the dam, as well as the infilling material in, and depth of,
weathering in such discontinuities. It is necessary to investigate both the regional geology and
the specific local geology to ensure a global picture is developed.
3.2 FOUNDATION MATERIALS CHARACTERISTICS
3.2.1 Terminology
Bedrock is a general term that includes any of the generally indurated or crystalline
materials that make up the Earth's crust. Individual stratigraphic units or units significant to
engineering geology within bedrock may include poorly or nonindurated materials such as
beds, lenses, or intercalations. These may be weak rock units or interbeds consisting of clay,
silt, and sand (such as the generally soft and friable St. Peter Sandstone, Sugary limestone for
Tarbela), or clay beds and bentonite partings in siliceous shales of the Morrison Formation.
Surficial Deposits are the relatively younger materials occurring at or near the Earth's
surface overlying bedrock. They occur as two major classes: (1) transported deposits
generally derived from bedrock materials by water, wind, ice, gravity, and man's intervention
and (2) residual deposits formed in place as a result of weathering processes. Surficial
deposits may be stratified or unstratified such as soil profiles, basin fill, alluvial or fluvial
deposits, landslides, or talus. The material may be partially indurated or cemented by
silicates, oxides, carbonates, or other chemicals (caliche or hardpan). This term is often used
interchangeably with the imprecisely defined word overburden. Overburden is a mining
term meaning, among other things, material overlying a useful material that has to be
removed. Surficial deposit is the preferred term.
Soil may be defined in engineering applications as generally unindurated
accumulations of solid particles produced by the physical and/or chemical disintegration of
bedrock and which may or may not contain organic matter. Surficial deposits, such as
colluvium, alluvium, or residual soil, normally are described
Rock as an engineering material is defined as lithified or indurated crystalline or
noncrystalline materials. Rock is encountered in masses and as large fragments which have
consequences to design and construction differing from those of soil.
Foundation materials are classified according to size, shape and looseness
Unconsolidated: These include loose materials in the form of single grains-clay, silt,
sand, gravel, cobbles, boulders, conglomerates, etc. Grain can be separated and
moved apart easily. None or small bending/cementing forces. These materials may be
cohesive as clays or non-cohesive as sands.
Consolidated: Basic grains are attached together in a strong manner, thus cannot be
separated easily. Such materials are generally termed as rocks.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 4
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

3.2.2 Size:
Earth crust soil particles vary considerably in size. Particles are classified according to
size following soil classification system as: ASTM, Unified soil classification, USDA, UK
systems etc. Basic particle classes are: clay, silt, sand, gravel, cobbles and main classes may
further be subdivided into fine, medium or coarse particles. The clay, silt and sand when
combined in different proportions are classed into an array of granular soils (Table 3.1)
Terminology for Soils (Source: Engineering Geology Field Manual)
Definitions for soil classification and description are in accordance with USBR 3900
Standard Definitions of Terms and Symbols Relating to Soil Mechanics: The sizes are
summarized in Table 3.2.
Cobbles and bouldersparticles retained on a 3-inch (75-mm) U.S. Standard sieve. The
following terminology distinguishes between cobbles and boulders:
Cobblesparticles of rock that will pass a 12-in (300-mm) square opening and be
retained on a 3-in (75-mm) sieve. Dia 3-12 inches.
Bouldersparticles of rock that will not pass a 12-in (300-mm) square opening.

Table 3.1: Particle size classification. Size in mm
Class ASTM D422
Novak p.42
UK
BS1377
Wahlstrom
1974 p-43
USDA Unified EGFM
Clay colloids < 0.001
Clay < 0.005 < 0.002 < 0.002 < 0.002 < 0.075
Silt 0.005-0.075 0.002-0.06 0.002-0.06 0.002-

< 0.074
Fine 0.002-

0.002-


Medium 0.006-0.02 0.006-0.02
Coarse 0.02-0.06 0.02-0.06
Sand 0.075-4.75 0.06-2 0.06-2 0.05-1 0.074-5
Fine 0.075-0.425 0.06-0.2 0.06-0.2 0.05-0.25 0.074-

0.075-

Medium 0.425-2 0.2-0.6 0.2-0.6 0.25-0.5 0.42-2 0.425-2
Coarse 2-4.75 0.6-2 0.6-2 0.5-2 2-5 2-4.75
Gravel 4.75-76.2 2-60 2-60 2-76
Fine 2-6 2-6 5mm-

4.75-3/4
Medium 6-20 6-20
Coarse 20-60 20-60 -3 -3
Cobbles > 76.2 60-600 > 60 75-300
Boulders > 600 >300

Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 5
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

Table 3.2: Comparative Particle sizes.
Descriptive term Size Familiar example within the size range
Boulder 300 mm or more Larger than a volleyball
Cobble 75 to 300 mm Orange -grapefruit- Volleyball
Coarse gravel 20 to 75 mm Grapes to orange
Fine gravel # 4 sieve (5 mm) to 20 mm Pea to grapes
Coarse sand # 10 to # 4 sieve Sidewalk salt
Medium sand # 40 to # 10 sieve Openings in aluminum window screen
Fine sand # 200 to # 40 sieve Grains barely visible-table salt-sugar
Gravelparticles of rock that will pass a 3-in (75-mm) sieve and is retained on a No. 4
(4.75-mm) sieve. Gravel is further subdivided as follows:
Coarse gravelpasses a 3-in (75-mm) sieve and is retained on 3/4-in (19-mm) sieve.
Fine gravelpasses a -in (19-mm) sieve and is retained on No. 4 (4.75-mm) sieve.
Sandparticles of rock that will pass a No. 4 (4.75-mm) sieve and is retained on a No. 200
(0.075-mm or 75-micrometer [m]) sieve. Sand is further subdivided as follows:
Coarse sandpasses No. 4 (4.75-mm) sieve and is retained on No. 10 (2.00-mm)
sieve.
Medium sandpasses No. 10 (2.00-mm) sieve and is retained on No. 40 (425-m)
sieve.
Fine sandpasses No. 40 (425-m) sieve and is retained on No. 200 (0.075-mm or
75-m) sieve.
Claypasses a No. 200 (0.075-mm or 75-m) sieve. Soil has plasticity within a range of
water contents and has considerable strength when air-dry. For classification, clay is a
fine-grained soil, or the fine-grained portion of a soil, with a plasticity index greater
than 4 and the plot of plasticity index versus liquid limit falls on or above the "A"-line
(Figure 3.23, later in this chapter).
Siltpasses a No. 200 (0.075-mm or 75-m) sieve. Soil is non-plastic or very slightly plastic
and that exhibits little or no strength when air-dry is a silt. For classification, a silt is a
fine-grained soil, or the fine grained portion of a soil, with a plasticity index less than 4
or the plot of plasticity index versus liquid limit falls below the "A"-line (Figure 3.23).
Organic clayclay with sufficient organic content to influence the soil properties is an
organic clay. For classification, an organic clay is a soil that would be classified as a
clay except that its liquid limit value after oven-drying is less than 75 percent of its
liquid limit value before oven-drying.
Organic siltsilt with sufficient organic content to influence the soil properties. For
classification, an organic silt is a soil that would be classified as a silt except that its
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 6
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

liquid limit value after oven-drying is less than 75 percent of its liquid limit value
before oven-drying.
Peatmaterial composed primarily of vegetable tissues in various stages of decomposition,
usually with an organic odor, a dark brown to black color, a spongy consistency, and a
texture ranging from fibrous to amorphous. Classification procedures are not applied to
peat.
3.2.3 Shapes
Gravels and cobbles shape may be as: Rounded, Sub rounded, Sub angular, Angular.
The particles shape may be as Bulky (equi-dimensional), Platy, Flaky, or Fibrous.
3.3 ROCK FEATURES FOR CLASSIFICATION
Rocks are aggregates of minerals. The chemical composition and molecular structure
determine the strength of the rock. Rocks and rock minerals are classified according to:
Hardness: determined by scratching the rock surface and compared with standard scale The
10 minerals scale: Tale-mica - 1, Gypsum 2, Calcite 3, Diamond 10), Finger
nail 2, Copper coin 3 (3-4), knife blade 5, window glass 5.5. The rock hardness /
strength descriptors are as under.
Alphanumeric descriptor Description / Criteria
H1 Extremely hard Core, fragment, or exposure cannot be scratched with knife or sharp
pick; can only be chipped with repeated heavy hammer blows.
H2 Very hard Cannot be scratched with knife or sharp pick. Core or fragment breaks with
repeated heavy hammer blows.
H3 Hard Can be scratched with knife or sharp pick with difficulty (heavy pressure).
Heavy hammer blow required to break specimen.
H4 Moderately hard Can be scratched with knife or sharp pick with light or moderate
pressure. Core or fragment breaks with moderate hammer blow
H5 Moderately soft Can be grooved 1/16 inch (2 mm) deep by knife or sharp pick with
moderate or heavy pressure. Core or fragment breaks with light hammer blow or
heavy manual pressure.
H6 Soft Can be grooved or gouged easily by knife or sharp pick with light pressure, can
be scratched with fingernail. Breaks with light to moderate manual pressure.
H7 Very soft Can be readily indented, grooved or gouged with fingernail, or carved with a
knife. Breaks with light manual pressure
Cleavage (yes/No). Yes if smooth surface on breaking. cleavage can be along one or more
parallel planes.
Fracture-breakage in planes other than cleavage plane: conchoidal concentric curved
surface, irregular - rough surface, splintery - wood like appearance
Luster appearance of mineral surface due to quality and intensity of light reflected
Color of the rock block.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 7
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

Streak-color of fine powder of mineral obtained on rubbing
Uni-axial compression strength: weak less than 35 MPA, strong 35 115 MPA, very
strong - > 115 MPA. (1 MPA = 145 psi ????)
Pre-failure deformation: elastic or viscous
Gross homogeneity: Massive or layered
Formation continuity: Solid joint spacing > 2 m, blocky joint spacing 1 2 m, broken /
fragmented - < 1m.
3.4 ROCK FORMING MINERALS
Only a dozen out of 2000 minerals are found in most rocks.
Quartz - silicon dioxide (example milky quarts, rock crystal quarts)
Feldspar - potassium aluminum silicate or No-Ca-Al-silicate
Mica - Complex K Al-silicate
Amphibole - Ca-Mg-Fe-silicate
Pyroxene - Ca-fe-Silicate
Olivine - Mg-Fe-silicate
Calcite - Ca-CO
Dolomite - Ca-Mg-Co
3

Clay minerals - Hydrous-Al-silicate
3

Limonite - Hydrous ferric oxide
Hematite - Ferric oxide
3.5 ROCK ORIGIN
3.5.1 Igneous rocks
Igneous rocks are primary rocks. These are formed on cooling/solidification of molten
lava (magma). If lava cools within the earth body, it forms an intrusive igneous (or plutonic)
rock. If the lava reaches the earth surface through some channels and then cools, it forms
extrusive igneous (or volcanic) rocks. Intrusive-dike-introduced at an angle to bedding plane.
Intrusive-sill-introduced on parallel to bedding plane. Cooling of magma results in the
systematic arrangement of ions into orderly patterns. The silicate minerals resulting from
crystallization form in a predictable order. Texture refers to size and arrangement of mineral
grains. Cooling rate, dissolved gases affect crystal size.
Igneous rocks-may be coarse grained-individual crystals visible to naked eye. Fine
grained, Glossy-rock non crystalline. Examples- Granite, Rhyolite (Extrusive equivalent of
granite), Basalt, Gabbro (Intrusive equivalent of basalt). Shrinkage cracks often formed on
cooling to give a columnar structure. Intrusive rocks may become exposed subsequently due
to weathering / erosion of upper layers. Pyroclastic rocks are those composed of fragments
ejected during a volcanic eruption.
Figure 3.2.1 describes the classification of igneous rocks and Figs 3.2.2 to 3.2.5 show
some igneous rocks.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 8
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


Figure 3.2.1: Classification of Igneous rocks.
2


Fig 3.2.2: Fine grained and coarse grained igneous rocks.

2
Figs 3.2.1- 3.2.16 are taken from lecture materials of Prof. J. David Rogers for GE50: Geology for Engineers
[http://web.umr.edu/~rogersda/umrcourses/ge50_....] and GE341: Engineering Geology and Gotechnics,
University of Missouri, Missouri School of Mines, Rolla. [http://www.geoengineer.org/learnbyhy-geology.html]
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 9
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


Fig 3.2.3: Granite, Andesite

Fig 3.2.4: Diorite (coarse grained), Basalt (fine texture, extrusive)

Fig 3.2.5: Gabbro, and Rhyolite
3.5.2 Sedimentary Rocks
These are secondary rocks formed of layer like masses of sediments that have
hardened through concentration, compaction, (or lithification) dissolution, precipitation or
incipient re-crystallization. Sedimentary rocks are products of mechanical and chemical
weathering. The base material is derived from the disintegration and decomposition of pre-
existent igneous, sedimentary or metamorphic rocks, materials were usually moved to new
places by wind, water, glaciers (detrital rocks).
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 10
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

Classtic rocks are made out of fragmental sediments of gravel, sand, silt and clays and have
discrete fragments and particles. Nonclastic rocks have pattern of interlocking crystals.
Chemical rocks form from dissolution and precipitation of chemical portions of rocks.
Organic rocks form from sediments of organic origin.
Examples: Classtic Conglomerate, Breccia, Sandstone, Siltstone, Mudstone, Shale
Pyroclastic Fine ash, Tuff, coarse (cinder) agglomerate
Chemical CaCO
3
(limestone), Ca-Mg-CO
3
(Dolomite), CaSO
4

(Gypsum), NaCl (Rock salt), CaCO
3
Organic animal remain (Coral rocks, Chalk), Carbon - plant remains
(Coal)

Figure 3.2.6 describes the classification of sedimentary rocks and Figs. 3.2.7 to 3.2.9 give
examples of these rocks.
Stratification is in approx parallel bands may be flat, tilted or folded. Bedding may be thin
(few inches) or thick (few feet). Bedding planes parallel to stratification. Cross bedding also
develop at right angle to the stratification.


Figure 3.2.6: Identification of sedimentary rocks.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 11
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


Figure 3.2.7: Alternate sequences of sandstone and shale in Grand Canyon.

Fig 3.2.8: Quartz sandstone and Conglomerate.

Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 12
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


Fig 3.2.9. Breccia, Coquina
3.5.3 Metamorphic Rocks
Metamorphic rocks are formed by partial to complete re-crystallization of pre-existing
rocks (igneous, sedimentary, other metamorphic rocks) due to high temperature and/or
pressure, differential stresses. Differential stress causes mechanical rotation and elongation of
constituent minerals and clasts. These rocks usually become deformed with complex highly
controlled fabrics. Layering develop due to original rock layering or generated during
metamorphism is clearly displayed in most rocks but not present in some massive rocks.
Layering is called foliation or schistocity. Most metamorphic rocks have the same overall
chemical composition as the parent rock from which they formed. Mineral makeup
determines, to a large extent, the degree to which each metamorphic agent will cause change.
Foliation any planar arrangement of mineral grains or structural features within a rock.
Examples of foliation: Parallel alignment of platy and/or elongated minerals.
Schistosity: Platy minerals are discernible with the unaided eye and exhibit a planar or
layered structure. Rocks having this texture are referred to as schist. Gneissic: During higher
grades of metamorphism, ion migration results in the segregation of minerals. Gneissic rocks
exhibit a distinctive banded appearance.
Nonfoliated rocks: Marble is a crystalline rock formed by the metamorphosis of limestone.
Quartzite is formed from a parent rock of quartz-rich sandstone. Quartz grains are fused
together.
Examples. Gneiss, Schist, Slate, Phyllite, Quartzite (from sandstone), Marble (from lime type
sedimentary rock). Fig. 3.2.10 gives classification of metamorphic rocks and Figs 3.2.11 to
3.2.16 give examples of metamorphic rocks.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 13
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


Figure 3.2.10: Classification of metamorphic rocks.

Figure 3.2.11: Foliation resulting from directed stress.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 14
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


Figure 3.2.12: Garnet-mica-schist

Figure 3.2.13: Slaty cleavage planes; Slope creep and rock toppling.

Figure 3.2.14: Deformed and folded gneiss; Gneissic texture
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 15
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


Figure 3.2.15: Slate (L) and Phyllite (R).

Figure 3.2.16: Marble; Quartzite
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 16
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


3.5.4 Rock symbols
The rocks are shown on the map by standard symbols as shown in Figure 3.2.17.


















Figure 3.2.17: Symbols representing various rock types. (Source: Wahlstrom 1974, p-200)

3.5.5 Rock Formations in Pakistan
Various rock formations encountered at different locations are shown in Figs. 3.2.18
to 3.2.20 for illustrative purposes.

Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 17
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


Figure 3.2.18: Massive limestone rock with many discontinuities (M-2 Salt range). Also see
are blast drill hole marks.

Figure 3.2.19: Shale formation cut slopes affected by whethering and erosion (M-2 Salt
range).
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 18
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


Figure 3.2.20: Massive limestone and sandstone inter bedding (M-2 Salt range).

Figure 3.2.21: Shale and sandstone inter bedding (M-2 Salt range).
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 19
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


Figure 3.2.22: Shale and sandstone inter bedding (M-2 Salt range).

Figure 3.2.23: Fractured sandstone bedding (M-2 Salt range).
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 20
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


Figure 3.2.24: Massive limestone rock on abutments of Dharabi dam (Dist. Chakwal).
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 21
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


Figure 3.2.25: Rock features along Mastuj River (a Try of Chitral R).

Figure 3.2.26: Rock fracturing Golen Gol, Chitral..
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 22
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


Figure 3.2.27: A large rock boulder with visible lava eruption/fill; Golen Gol, Chitral.

Figure 3.2.28: Sandstone and shale layers exposed at Tanpura-I dam, Dist Jhelum.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 23
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


Figure 3.2.29: Fractured rock cut at Simly dam left abutment..

Figure 3.2.30: Shale and sandstone layering at right abutment of emergency spillway,
Mangla dam raising project.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 24
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


Figure 3.2.31: Tanpura-I dam: Fractured friable sandstone layers over shale.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 25
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

3.6 ROCK RESHAPING
Many features result in reshaping of rock masses as under.
3.6.1 Disintegration and Decomposition of rocks
Rocks are subjected to many physical and chemical processes that alter rock
formations and properties to varying degrees. Most changes result in reduction in size and
consequently their strength. Rocks are subject to weathering an account of exposure to
environment and on contract with hot aqueous solutions (hydrothermal solutions). The rate of
weathering depend on rock composition the climate, extent of contact of surface solutions
into deep locations (along fractures) warm and hot regions has greatest weathering. Physical
weathering produces soil and gravel, which are finally eroded by water, wind, and glaciers.
Chemical weathering results in clay minerals. Magnesium, calcium and iron rich rocks break
more easily by chemical weathering.
Rock masses also break on cooling and shrinking which also causes deep fractures
and joints. Rocks become folded etc due to seismic thrusts, lava eruption and earthquake
reasons. These features weaken the rock mass. Some depth of loose materials or alluvium
may also cover rock surface and is termed as overburden.
3.6.2 Bedding and Folding
Most rocks have flat-lying beds or layers and are visible on vertical exposed edges.
However, subsequent slope failure, lava eruptions, seismic movements lift these straight beds
and become folded and tilted or inclined (Figs. 3.3, 3.4).
Folds are produced by a complex process of dislocation involving bending, shearing
or slipping on a large to small scale and/or recrystalization. Anticlines-upfolds, synclines-
downfolds. Dome is upfold which dips away in all directions.
3.6.3 Fractures in rocks
Discontinuity.A collective term used for all structural breaks in geologic materials which
usually have zero to low tensile strength. Discontinuities also may be healed. Discontinuities
comprise fractures (including joints), planes of weakness, shears/faults, and shear/fault zones.
Depositional or erosional contacts between various geologic units may be considered
discontinuities.
Bedding planes - The planes marking the termination of one sedimentary deposit and the
beginning of another; they usually constitute a weakness along which the rock tends
to break.
Foliation - In rocks that have been subjected to heat and deforming pressures during regional
metamorphism, some new materials such as muscovite and biotite mica, talc and
chlorite may be formed by recrystallisation. These new minerals are arranged in
parallel layers of flat or elongated crystals - the property of foliation.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 26
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies














Figure 3.3: Rock layering (Source: Wahlstrom 1974. p-88)
Fractures are discontinues/breaks in geologic materials resulting from failure of rock under
stress (tensional, compressional or shear) The presence of faults may be recognized
from such physical features as; Offset of beds, dykes or veins; Slickensides; Gouge;
Brecciation or crushing; Topographic features like escarpments, linear trenches or sag
valleys.
Joint is a crack which transects a rock with little or slight displacement of adjacent sides
parallel to the plane but a slight seperation normal to the joint surface. A series of
joints with similar orientation forms a joint set (Figs. 3.5, 3.6).
Shear.A structural break where differential movement has occurred along a surface or zone
of failure; characterized by polished surfaces, striations, slickensides, gouge, breccia,
mylonite, or any combination of these. Often direction of movement, amount of
displacement, and continuity may not be known because of limited exposures or
observations.
Fault

. fractures along which there has been notable displacement of one side of fracture
relative to other. A shear with significant continuity which can be correlated between
observation locations; foundation areas, or regions; or is a segment of a fault or fault
zone reported in the literature. The designation of a fault or fault zone is a site-specific
determination. (A and B in Fig. 3.5)

Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 27
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

















Figure 3.4: Cross section of several kinds of folds. (no scale). Source: Wahlstrom 1974 p.96.
Shear/fault zone
Faults are generally accomplished by joints but joints are not necessarily associated
with faults. Fractures are of greater concern for engineering proper ties of rocks.
Fractures greatly reduce strength of rock and promote valley slope failure. Fractures
also provide channel ways for movement of water (leading to mechanical and
chemical weathering and alternation by solutions of deep seated origin. Fault is
dislocation along a fracture. Fault zone movement along a number of parallel, sub-
parallel or intersecting surfaces.
.A band of parallel or subparallel fault or shear planes. The zone may
consist of gouge, breccia, or many fault or shear planes with fractured and crushed
rock between the shears or faults, or any combination. In the literature, many fault
zones are simply referred to as faults.
Stirke of fault is compass bearing of a horizontal line in the plane of fault.
Dip

is inclination of fault from the horizontal (measured at right angle to strike). Many faults
and fault zone contain crushed materials and/or secondary minerals deposited from
groundwater circulation along the faults.

Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 28
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies
















Figure 3.5: Some aspects of faults. (Wahlstrom 1974, p.97). A. Tensional gash joints and
tight compressed shear joints have developed along a fault. B. Faulting has caused
drag folding in adjacent sedimentary rocks. C. Fault is accompanied by extensive
development of joints in wall rocks. D. Sheeted fault zone. Movement along joints
is accompanied by development of parallel joints. E. Fault zone contains closely
spaced joints. F. Gash joints and shear joints have developed within and adjacent
to fault zone.
Gouge is the mix having large proportion of grains of clay size or slightly larger.
Crush breccia contain angular rock fragments usually embed in gouge.
Primary/Secondary Joints:

Primary joints formed at formation of rock due to shrinkage/
contraction/ volume change. Fractures can also develop during folding/lifting process.





Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 29
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies











Figure 3.6: Faults fill materials. (Wahstrom 1974, p.98). A. Braided slip surfaces intersect
fault filling, consisting of angular crush breccia. B. Fault filled with gouge and
crush conglomerate. C. Open space in fault contains a partial filling of minerals
deposited from solutions that moved along the fault. D. Fault contain a vein of gangue
and ore minerals. Wall rocks are altered by the solutions that deposited the fault
filling.











Figure 3.7: Shear and tension joints. (Wahlstrom 1974, p.99) A. Smooth surfaced,
intersecting shear joints. B. Rough surfaced tension joints. C. Tension joints that have
localized alteration of wall rock. D. Closely spaced shear joints associated with
displacements along bedding plane in shale.


Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 30
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies














Figure 3.8a: Faults, folds and joints in rock foundations.

Fig 3.8b. A fault with vegetation growth over the intervalley (The photo shows a reverse
fault. The lithology is composed of marl, clay and tuffite beds. The formation is namely
"Baskoy Formation". Its age is Turonien of Upper Cretaous. The fault formed as part of the
Alpine Orogenesis processes. The photo shows the formation of a small valley at the fault
zone where plants have grown. The location is the Bartin-Kurucasile roadway around Amasra
town in northwest Turkey near the Black Sea. Donated by: Avni Akyuz)
[www.geoengineering.org].
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 31
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

3.6.4 Weathering
Weathering considerably alters the properties of rocks. Weathering is caused by
weather, water, chemical and physical processes Weathering is classed as under:
Weathering category Weathering signs
Fresh Rock No visible signs of weathering
Slightly Weathered
Penetrative weathering developed in open discontinuity surfaces but only slight
weathering of rock material.
Moderately Weathered Weathering extends throughout the rock mass, but the rock is not friable.
Highly Weathered
Weathering extends throughout the rock mass, but the rock material is partly
friable.
Completely Weathered
Rock is wholly decomposed, and in a friable condition but rock texture and
structure are preserved.
Soil
A soil material with the original texture, structure and mineralogy of the rock
completely destroyed.
















Figure 3.9: Rock matrix failure below river channels in soluble rocks.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 32
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

3.6.5 Rock Classification
Tunnels are frequently constructed as part of outlet works, power tunnels, river
diversions etc. Tunnels are excavated through the rock matrix of abutments. The following
terms are used for the classification of rocks for tunneling purposes:
Intact rock contains neither joints nor hairline cracks. If it breaks, it breaks across sound
rock. On account of damage to the rock due to blasting, spalls may drop off the roof
several hours or days after blasting. This is known as spalling condition. Hard, intact
rock may also be encountered in the popping condition (rock burst) involving the
spontaneous and violent detachment of rock slabs from sides or roof.
Stratified rock consists of individual strata with little or no resistance against separation
along the boundaries between strata. The strata may or may not be weakened by
transverse joints. In such rock, the spalling condition is quite common.
Moderately jointed rock contains joints and hairline cracks, but the blocks between joints
are locally grown together or so intimately interlocked that vertical walls do not require
lateral support. In rocks of this type, both the spalling and the popping condition may be
encountered.
Blocky and seamy rock consists of chemically intact or almost intact rock fragments which
are entirely separated from each other and imperfectly interlocked. In such rock,
vertical walls may require support.
Crushed but chemically intact rock has the character of a crusher run. If most or all of the
fragments are as small as fine sand and no recementation has taken place, crushed rock
below the water table exhibits the properties of a water-bearing sand.
Squeezing rock slowly advances into the tunnel without perceptible volume increase.
Movement is the result of overstressing and plastic failure of the rock mass and not due
to swelling.
Swelling rock advances into the tunnel chiefly on account of expansion. The capacity to
swell is generally limited to those rocks which contain smectite, a montmorillonite
group of clay minerals, with a high swelling capacity.
Although the terms are defined, no distinct boundaries exist between rock categories. Wide
variations in the physical properties of rocks classified by these terms and rock loading are
often the case.
3.7 ENGINEERING PROPERTIES OF ROCKS
The strength of loose aggregates depends on degree of cohesion, confinement and
water content and varies as 5 to 20 psi. The strength of rocks (crushing strength) is a function
of mineralogy, cementation, origin and rock fabric (fabric expressed by grain size, grain
shape, grain distribution etc planer arrangement of elements of fabric, stratification, foliation
etc) and degree of fraction.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 33
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

Engineering properties are considered in terms of ability of rocks to take load
(compressive and shear) and ability to pass water flow.
The rock density sp. Gravity
Basalt, gabbro, schist 2.9 3.2
Granite, slate, marble, limestone 2.5 2.8
In general strongest rocks are denser and weak rocks are most porous. Crushing strength of
rocks is given as under: (Wahlstrom p.48-49)
Rock type strength (thousand psi)
Clastic sedimentary rocks
Calcarious mudstones 8-28
Dolomite 9-51
Limestone 0.7-29
Sandstone 1.5-34
Shale 1-33
Siltstone 4-45
Igneous/metamorphic rocks
Basalt 26-40
Gneiss 22-36
Granite 6-42
Marble 7-34
Quantzite 30-53
Schist 1.1-20
Slate 14-47
Presence of mica lowers crushing strength. Weathering of rocks greatly reduces its strength.
Porosity of strong rocks may be less than 1%. Fractures, joints, solution channels may
increase porosity to as much as 15% (in limestone with cavernous spaces).
3.8 GEOLOGICAL REQUIREMENTS OF DAMS
Most dams can be built on all type of foundation conditions from strength point of
view. But this would require treatment and foundation improvements to make up structural
deficiencies of the foundation material. This means more costs usually making the project
expensive, less attractive and may be unacceptable. Thus there are preferred foundation
conditions favoring the type of dam and are described below. It may be pointed that
structurally sound foundations may require treatment for the purposes of reducing and
controlling seepage through dam foundations.
Earthfill Dams
Can be built over all types of foundation (alluvium, rock, soil, etc).
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 34
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

Rockfill Dams
Moderately hard rocks are preferred but can be built over deep alluvium. Sites with
large amount of clays are not very suitable.
Uncertain or variable foundation, which is unreliable for concrete dam can also be
used.
Concrete Gravity Dam
Hard rock at or near surface. Any soft overlying materials need to be removed.
Depth of soft material over the rock not to exceed 7-10 m to avoid excessive
excavation.
Concrete Buttress Dam
Buttress dam is suitable if rock of bearing strength of 2-3 MPa
Arch Dam
The dead gravity weight of an arch dam is supported by the foundation rock but it
utilizes the strength of an arch to transfer the water loads onto the abutments.
Therefore the strength of the rock mass at the abutments and immediately downvalley
of the dam must be unquestionable.
Its modulus of elasticity must be high enough to ensure deformation under thrust from
arch do not induce excessive stress in the arch.
Competent foundation and abutments of strong/hard rock.
Thin arch dam: Rock strength of valley sides between 5.5 to 8 Mpa.
Thick arch-dams: rock bearing strength more than 3.5 Mpa.
Multiple Arch Dam: Foundation rock reliable to bear 2-3 MPa or more without
settlement. [1 psi = 6.895 KPa, 1 MPa = 145 psi]
3.9 DAM SITE INVESTIGATIONS
3.9.1 Objectives
Geologic information of dam site is required for design of a safe dam structure. Over
40% of dam failures on record have occurred due to dam foundation defects. Investigations
must be able to answer following:
Depth of overburden that must be removed to reach an acceptable foundation.
Rock types that make up foundation and affect of weathering on rock quality.
Engineering properties of foundation rock types (strength, deformability,
durability), settlement, elastic properties.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 35
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

Geologic structure of foundation in terms of joints, fractures, faults, folding,
defect pattern, orientation, spacing, extent and openness/aperture. Characteristics
of infill materials, presence of solution cavities and void continuity.
Permeability of rock foundation due to defects as joints, faults, bedding open.
Sources and location of adequate supplies of construction materials such as clay,
sand, gravel and rock fill, preferably as close as possible to the dam site;
Check if the rock excavated to provide a spillway for the dam be acceptable for
use as rock fill in the construction of the dam embankment;
Check if the spillway requires concrete lining and an energy dissipation structure
at its downstream end or is the spillway rock sufficiently erosion resistant that
these can be omitted (esp for small dams).
In order to be able to answer the above questions an experienced engineering
geologist must explore the dam site. Most dam site investigations will employ several
different methods, the exact mix of methods and the timing when each is carried out is
something which is tailored to suit the particular geological problems of each individual dam
site. These geological site investigations allow the engineering geologist to construct a
"geological model" of the site which is then used by the dam designers as a basis on which
they can design a safe and economic dam structure appropriate to the geology of that
particular site.
It is important to realize that even the most comprehensive site investigation program
cannot hope to reveal all the significant geological features of the site. It is therefore of
critical importance that the actual geological conditions revealed during construction be
compared with the geological model of the site derived from the site investigations. It is quite
common for unexpected geological conditions
3.9.2 Dam Site Investigations/Explorations Include
to be revealed during construction which
require changes to be made to the original design. A record of the site geology "as found"
during construction is also of great value if problems develop later during the operation and
maintenance phase
Surface explorations: geological mapping of surface rock outcrops
Geophysical surveys: seismic refraction, electrical resistivity surveys
Sub-surface explorations which include:
excavation of pits and trenches using bulldozers, backhoe, etc.
excavation of shafts, addits (tunnels) gallery
diamond core drilling to obtain undisturbed core samples at various depths
(few to hundreds of meters deep)
Rotary drilling to obtain disturbed samples
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 36
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

In-situ loading compressibility tests
Water pressure intake tests
Grout intake tests
The test sites include: dam axis, reservoir periphery, spillway, tunnels, power house site, etc.
3.9.3 Surface Explorations
The rock and loose fill material features are obtained from study of exposed surface,
rock outcrops, vertical cuts along streams, road sides, building foundation excavations.
Features directly observable/visible are evaluated. Loose fill material is noted as to grain size,
size gradation, shape and type of fill (alluvium, instu weathering, aeolian, glacial deposits) in
terms of quantity, quality, volume, depth, aerial extent etc. Rocks are noted for type, bedding,
layering, layer thickness, fracturing, dip and strike.
Surface exploration is a cheap and quick method for preliminary reconnaissance and
pre-feasibility level studies only. These must be added with other exploration methods for
feasibility and detail design level studies. Surface explorations with limited subsurface
explorations are useful to locate construction materials as gravel and sand for concreting,
boulders/cobles for riprap etc..
3.9.4 Geophysical Surveys
These are methods to read the foundation profile from the surface without
excavating the profile itself by traversing the profile with an electromagnetic signal. These
are non-destructive, cheap and quick methods. The main purpose of geophysical surveys are
to (1) - determine depth of bed rock and rock layers, (2) - locate buried bedrock channels, (3)
- determine depth of the rock weathering, (4) - major layering conditions, and (5) - delineate
boundaries of different materials.
A signal in the form of a
seismic impact (e.g. hammer blow)
or electric current or acoustic signal
is sent into the earth crust. The wave
traverses through the soil/rock layers
refracted back to soil surface and is
monitored at a distant location by
geophones or electrodes. The
strength and velocity of wave travel
is interpreted in terms of rock type,
layering depth, rock integrity. Field
experience in the form of bore hole
logs at neighboring locations are used for accurate interpretation of results. Geophysical
surveys require specialized equipment and experienced persons. Geophysical surveys are
mostly used to fill/detail out rock description between borehole locations.
Figure 3.10. Geophysical profile testing.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 37
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

3.9.5 Sub Surface Explorations
Sub surface exploration includes excavating the foundation profile and studying the
contents. Various methods used are:
Test Pit of small plan area is dug to shallow depth. It allows inspection, sampling and insitu
tests.
Trench is a long continuous test pit to selected depths. Mostly limited to upper weathered
zone.
Tunnels-/adits is a horizontal opening made to explore area under slope, abutments, section
5x7 rectangular or hoarse shoe. It is slow and expensive. Show rock features. May be used
later as drainage adit.


Figure 3.11: Top: Exploratory adits on left and right abutments of Monar dam. Bottom:
Entrance to the adit. (http://www.corestore.org/DeanieMonar.htm)
Rotary drilling or Auger borings provide undisturbed samples. Augur borings of 4-12 inch
dia and up to 20 ft depth are done manually. Deeper holes are possible with mechanical
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 38
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

augers only including helical augurs for 3-16 inch dia, disk augurs for upto 42 inches dia, and
bucket augurs upto 48 inch dia holes. Augur borings provide profile details. Large size holes
are preferred for foundation investigations.
Diamond core drilling
3.9.6 Geologic maps
: These are carried by large drilling rigs using diamond drill bit. Water
is circulated through the drill stem to extract the rock cuttings/grindings to the surface. Drill
holes may be vertical or inclined. Log is prepared of the nature of rock materials encountered.
The penetration speed also provides rock hardness and strength. Undisturbed core samples
are retrieved by wire line without removing drill bit. Bore holes are located along dam axis,
and dam periphery. Bore holes are drilled down to level of hard un-weathered rock.
Undisturbed samples provide RQD description. Samples are sealed and sent to lab for further
strength tests.
The results of geologic investigations are presented in the form of geologic maps.
These include map of dam and reservoir area, along dam axis, along right and left abutments,
along spillway and other places of interest. Preliminary maps are first prepared from surfical
information and are improved further as more and more information is obtained by detailed
field investigations. Such maps for are shown in Figs. 3.12 (a to g) for Kurram Tangi dam.

Figure 3.12a: Surface geology map of KTD site.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 39
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


Figure 3.12b: Alternate dam axis.

Figure 3.12c: Geological section along river channel.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 40
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


Figure 3.12d: Geological section along dam axis.


Figure 3.12e: Geological section along left abutment.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 41
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


Figure 3.12f: Geological section along right abutment / outlet tunnel.

Figure 3.12g: Geological section along spillway.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 42
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


3.10 ROCK FOUNDATIONS (Sherard 1963 p-255)
Rocks are generally stronger than alluvium overlying the bed rock. Some rock masses
of soft secondary rocks (shale, clay stone, siltstone, mudstone or marl) are weak rocks with
their strength varying over a wide range. Density of rock may vary from 88 to 155 lbs/cft and
water content 2 to 40%. The rocks may be well cemented to being rock due to higher pressure
only (compaction shale). Shale foundations must be given the most careful and conservative
considerations even for low dams.
Characteristics which can reduce the strength of a rock are:
1. Continuous mass of clay or other weak material, even for thickness of a fraction
of an inch.
2. Closely spaced cracks system often associated with severe twisting movements
and faults.
3. Basic constituents consisting of highly plastic and very fine clay with no sand size
so that individual rock fragments have a greasy surface texture and very little
frictional resistance when sliding in respect to each other.
4. Horizontal bedding is likely to be more dangerous for two reasons. (a) weak
seams are more likely be continuous, (b) it is more likely that high pore water
pressure will be transmitted horizontally.
Test on individual rock specimens, core borings alone may not provide complete picture.
Large rock samples, large scale field insitu tests, test pits and shafts should be used. Calyx
borings (large diameter holes drilled with smooth walls) plus a large core is very useful for
this.
3.11 LOGGING OF EXPLORATIONS
The description of formation type and other characteristics is called bore log. This shows
results from rotary drill with adequate arrangements for obtaining samples. The standard
symbols are used to graphically describe the details. The information of multiple exploration
logs are presented in the form of sample log, x-section, or fence diagram. Sample log is
shown in Fig. 3.13.
Test holes should be numbered for identification.
Hole number prefixed by 1-2 letters as: DH-drill hole, AH augur hole (hand), AP-
Augur hole (power), TP-test pit (open), T-trench, etc.
A log is a written record of data concerning materials and conditions encountered
in each test hole.
Each log be factual, accurate, clear and complete
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 43
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

Log describes depth elevation, graphic log, samples, classification and physical
condition, percolation tests, type and size of hole, core recovery, RQD (rock
quality designation = proportions of samples which are 4 inch or longer in length).
Each log also record of hole No., location, project, ground level, bore
dip/inclination, total depth, test dates, ground coordinates, etc. type of equipment
used.














Figure 3.13: A typical log of a borehole. (Wahlstrom 1974. p.201)
3.12 FOUNDATION FAILURE (Wahlstrom p-165)
Dam foundations should be designed with generous margins of safety. The dam and
the reservoir behind dam create dead weight loads and water pressures that did not exist
previously. Thus behavior of dam, the materials in the foundations and the abutments, and in
the reservoir site require constant monitoring during and after dam construction and reservoir
filling for short and long term responses to loads (creep response: elongation due to continued
loading for long time). Tarbela dam is known to have numerous earth tremors on account of
release of stresses on bedding plans which are imposed by dam and water weight.
Dam body exerts large unit pressure over the foundation. Concrete dams, because of
small contact area, have greatest in concentrated loads pressures. Concrete dams are rigid
body and small foundation settlements can induce excessive stresses in the dam body.
Earthfill/ rockfill dams are non-rigid and can relatively easily adjust internally to load, and
pressure exerted on foundation are approximately equal to the weight of overlying prism of
materials of different height.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 44
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies














Figure 3.14: Geologic conditions promoting foundation failure. Plastic mechanism for shear
failure. A: vertical directed load. B: Load is directed asymmetrically. (Wahlstrom
1974, p.181)
Horizontal foundation rock/earth fill dams fail because of seepage/uplift problems
rather for shearing dislocations owing to the load of the dam. On contrary concrete dam fail
by shear dislocations. Shear surfaces develop under the dam as a symmetric wedge.
Foundations with faults, folds, low strength beds, inclined planes, fault zone or other weak
surface can lead to failure until treated.
Elastic properties of some selected rocks (P-185)
Rock Elasticity (10
6
Igneous Granite: 1.5-11.9; Andesite: 4.7-6.9; Baslat 5.9-12.4
psi)
Metamorphic Quartzite: 1.2-6.4; Gneiss: 3.5-15.1
Sedimentary Gypsum: 0.17-1.1, Shale: 0.3-9.9; Limestone: 0.4-14.1; Sandstone 0.6-8.0;
Siltstone: 1.0-9.3
3.13 IMPROVEMENTS OF FOUNDATION AND RESERVOIR AREA
FOUNDATION IMPROVEMENT
In spite of geological and geophysical investigations, the many important details
become known only at the time of construction and may require modifications of design and
construction details. Unpredicted delays are not appropriate. It be born in mind that never
again in the life time of dam it will be possible to examine in detail and take the appropriate
necessary steps to correct adverse conditions that are revealed in future. The foundations of
main dam through river valley and abutments are required to withstand dead/dynamic loads
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 45
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

with minimum seepage. Treatment of foundations and abutment is done to improve their
competency and to reduce or eliminate subsurface seepage.



















Figure 3.15: Geologic conditions promoting failure of foundation of concrete dams.
(Wahlstrom 1974. p-182-183). A. Brittle fractured sandstone rests on a weak shale
layer dipping upstream. B. Horizontally layered limestone rest on a weak shale layer
which extends downstream to a steep slope in the valley floor. C. Fracture crystalline
rocks lie above a flat fault containing sheared, gougy materials of very low strength.
D. Intersecting strong conjugate joints have attitudes that promote easy mass sheat
dislocation. E. Sedimentary rocks dipping downstream are intersected by a fault
dipping upstream and containing materials of low strength. F. Folsed rocks containing
thin, weak layers of shale present a potential for foundation failures.
3.13.1 Stripping
The top few meters of rock surface are most affected by weathering and development
of fractures, faults etc inclined slippage planes. The fractured part of the rock foundation is
stripped off to reach a otherwise hard competent rock. This may be good enough for small
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 46
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

dams but need other treatments for large dams. Foundations with overlying alluvium are
stripped to expose the hard bed rock surface for concrete dams; this may not be needed for
earthfill or rockfill dams.
3.13.2 Replacement of Weak Layers
Weak inclined layers/beds of shale and other materials do not provide good
foundation. These layers if few and thin, may be excavated and space filled up by strong
concrete. Thus upper 5-10 m depth may be treated. However, the weak cleavage planes
between adjacent beds/layers may not get treated fully leaving potential planes of failures.
3.13.3 Grouting
Grouting is a process of filling the discontinuities and void spaces of underground
channels in rock with a sealant. Grout is a liquid, either a uniform chemical substance or an
aqueous suspension of solids, that is injected into rocks or unconsolidated materials through
specially drilled bore holes to improve bulk physical properties and/or to reduce or eliminate
seepage flow paths of water beneath the dam structure. Grout include: 1- Portland cement
based slurries, 2- chemical grouting solutions, and 3- organic resins, epoxy/polymers. Clay,
sand, bentonite or chemicals may be added to cement slurries to increase/decrease setting
time.
Three kinds of grouting programs are identified.
1. Comparatively shallow systematic blanket or consolidation grouting over critical
portions of the foundation.
2. Deep curtain grouting from a gallery or concrete grout cap along a specified location
e.g. dam axis, to produce deep impermeable barrier to subsurface groundwater
seepage.
3. Off-pattern special purpose grouting to improve strength and/or overcome problems
created by groundwater circulation.
Grouting help to close channel ways, and thus reduce seepage considerably. Small
inaccuracies may allow some seepage past the curtain, however, thus seepage can be taken
care of by installing drainage wells.
Grout curtain is located under the clay core in earth fill-rock fill dams, under the
concrete face in CFRF dam, under heel of a concrete dam, below gallery in concrete dams.
Depth of grout curtain is upto solid/firm/competent rock mass through weaker or fractured
beds. If complete description of foundation rock is not available, or is highly varied, then
grout depth is taken equal to height of dam at that location. Grouting for deep holes is usually
done over short intervals upward or downward. Packers may be used to isolate the grouting
section.


Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 47
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies














Figure 3.16: Earthfill and rockfill dam foundations in unconsolidated deposits. Wahlstrom
p.236-237). A. Rockfill dam, impervious membrane (asphaltic concrete) extends to a
grout cap on bed rock. B. Cut-off trench extends to bed rock. C. Cutoff trench
penetrates impervious layer in unconsolidated valley fill. D. Cutoff extends to layers
of impervious material in unconsolidated valley fill. Grout holes extend through
limestone layer in bed rock. E. A cutoff is provided by sheet piling driven into an
impervious layer in valley fill. F. Flow beneath dam is reduced by a layer of
impervious material placed upstream from the dam.
IMPROVEMENT OF ABUTMENTS AND RESERVOIR AREA
The weakness of abutments in terms of rock surface disintegration and falling over
may be improved by (1) Dental work the open rock joints are cleaned and filled with
concrete or some other filler; (2) Scaling the loose rock masses over the abutments and
reservoir rim are removed to exposed lower lying hard and stable surface, thus future danger
is reduced.
3.14 GROUTING
3.14.1 Curtain Grouting
This is grouting done along a single selected axis (e.g. below core, below concrete
slab of rockfill dam, below heel of concrete dam , or grout cap etc) to form a seepage curtain
below the dam. Thus every space on selected axis becomes treated (Figs. 3.17, 3.185).
Curtain grouting before dam construction for E/F, R/F dams.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 48
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

Performed from a grout cap. The grout cap is made of concrete by filling a
shallow, narrow excavated trench in the foundation/cut of trench.
May be done after dam completed from an u/s heel of a dam.
Construction after dam completion most effective when full load of dam is being
exerted on the foundation. Thus higher grouting pressures may be used to assure
maximum filling of voids and sealing off of flow channels.



















Figure 3.17: Dams on rock foundations showing location of drilled holes for foundation
treatment.. (Wahlstrom 1974. p-230-240). A. Rockfill dam with impermeable
concrete face. B, C. Zoned earth and rock fill dam. D. Earth dam. E. Concrete gravity
dam with C holes intersecting a fault zone. F. Concrete dam with double grout
curtain and C holes intersecting a permeable fault zone.

For concrete dams, a gallery is left in dam body from where grouting and drainage
wells may be installed after dam completion.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 49
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

Depth of grouting: For completely described geology = 1/3 of dam height + 50 ft.
For unknown or highly variable geology = dam height.
For unknown geological conditions, depth as may be needed to plug off seepage.
Grout spacing commonly 10 ft apart.
A pre-determined closure pattern followed (Fig. 3.20).
Holes may be vertical or inclined
The depth of shallower holes is controlled by the experience in the preceding
holes
3.14.2 Blanket Grouting
Blanket grout holes are shallower 20-30 ft.
Intended to remedy flows in the foundation such as deep fractured rock. Over a
larger area.
Holes normal to foundation
Blanket grouting completed before construction of dam.












Figure 3.18: Schematic layout of Curtin and blanket grouting of rock foundation of an
earthfill dam. A: Plan, B: Section showing formation depth for curtain grout holes.
(Wahlstrom 1974. p-244)
3.14.3 Pattern Grouting
Dam geology unknown before construction. Location/specifications of curtain &
blanket grouting not precisely stated. Grouting take can be in excess of estimates
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 50
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

Need to complete grouting as required. Grouting is an art and not a science
Pattern grouting included in plans to for prior estimate of footage and grants
value.
Actual number of holes & specifications determined by the area and cross
sectional configuration of the excavation of dam foundation.
















Fig. 3.19: Schematic location of pattern blanket and curtain grout holes in foundation of a
concrete gravity dam. Curtain grout holes are drilled from a gallery within the dam.
A: Plan, B: Preferred pattern, C: Alternate plan for grouting from the gallery.
(Wahlstrom 1974. p-245).







Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 51
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies










Figure 3.20: Conventional closure pattern for curtain drilling and grouting. Numbers indicate
sequence of drilling and grouting. (Wahlstrom 1974. p-248).
















Figure 3.21: Curtin grouting holes with depth attitudes determined by subsurface geologic
conditions. (Wahlstrom 1974. p-249).


Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 52
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies














Figure 3.22: Grout curtain used on the abutment. (USBR, 2001, p.213).
3.14.4 Grouting pressure
Grout entry into the formation depends on grout consistency, void opening size, and grout
pressure. Thick or thin mixtures are used. Grout liquid injected below the rock layers tend to
travel outward and also force upward the overlying layers. The lifting of grout under pressure
in a horizontal channel way is function of grout pressure and rock density (for granite density
== 2.6) as under. (Pressure in psi, Height of rock that can be displaced.): 10 psi 8.8 ft; 100
psi 89 ft, 200 psi 178 ft, 300 psi 276 ft, 500 psi 444 ft. This necessitates that
shallower holes be grouted at smaller pressure, thus will have smaller lateral spacing.
3.15 ROCK SLOPE STABILITY
Fractured rock masses with inclined planes of weakness tend to be unstable and
present a threat of collapse by slope failure. This is especially so rock friction is likely to
change by exposure to water from a reservoir. Grouting and or rock bolts or steel tensioned
cables are useful.
Rock bolts tend to close fissures and increase shearing strength along fractures by
increasing frictional resistance.
These be firmly anchored in solid rock. Expanding anchoring device (rawl bolt),
quick set high strength resins are used.
Rock bolts may be installed at right angle to plane of facture.

Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 53
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies









Figure 3.23: Rock slab stability improvement by rock tension bolts. (Wahlstrom 1974. p-264).

















Figure 3.24: Reinforcement of rock mass by tensioned rock bolts or steel cables. (Wahlstrom
1974. p-265) A: Unstable slope in inclined sedimentary rocks. B: Block of crystalline
rock above faults inclined toward the valley floor. C: Crystalline rock mass
intersected by vertical shear. D: A shattered zone along a fault zone. E: Closely
fractured zone in a foundation. F: Rock bolts or heavy steel cables to reduce hazard of
possible dislocation along a horizontal shale layer when reservoir is filled.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 54
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

3.16 EARTHQUAKE HAZARDS
Earthwork or seismic tremors are important geophysical phenomena. Earthquakes are
caused by volcanic exceptions, tectonic plates movement and release of stresses embedded in
plates in the earth profile along active seismic faults, e.g. St. Andrews fault California, USA.
Earthquakes cause a sudden acceleration of earth surface resulting in shaking, jolting of all
structures resulting on the earth surface. Extreme tremors can cause considerable damage to
property and life. A geo-physist can analyze the earthquake hazard in the area.
Shock waves associated in the earthquakes are P or longitudinal, S or shear and L
waves. P waves moves with maximum in velocity, S waves at about 60% of P waves. P and S
waves are body waves that travel through rocks below the earth surface. L waves are
relatively slow surface waves of long periods and capable of causing swaying of buildings or
wave motion in water bodies at great distances from the point of origin. Most damage from
earthquake is caused by L waves rather than P & S waves.
Earthquake are characterized by location and depth of epicenters, intensity and
magnitude. Intensity is given by Mercalli scale and magnitude by Richter scale. Richter
magnitude is determined from amplitude of ground vibrations. Richter scale size of
earthquake effects at a specific location. The distance of epicenter and nature of ground
formation causes large changes on intensity and impact of the earthquake at a specific
location. Subsurface geology being much more important. Mercalli scale 1 to 12 (1 not felt
by people, 12 damage extreme or total). Richter scale M 1 to 8. M = Log
10
A/A
0
, where A =
maximum amplitude of horizontal ground motion at a distance of 100 km and A
0
Concrete dams resting on solid rock are usually not extensively damaged by
earthquake. Rock and earthfill dams are dislocated more than concrete dams by shock waves,
generally are flexible to adjust to micro adjustments without failure (not on weak foundation)
(or not dislocated by extension of fault into the dam). Although visible damage may not
develop in a dam, small scale displacements in foundation rocks may alter groundwater flow
pattern beneath the dam, disrupt or reopen cracks filled and sealed by grouts.
= amplitude
at 0.001 m.
Earthquakes may promote extensive land sliding in slopes, leading to water waves, of
considerable height. These water waves present a serious threat of destructive over flow of a
dam and dam failure. Waves may also be generated in the reservoir water body due to surface
jolting (called Tsunami). The earthquake hazard require that seismic loads must be
adequately accounted for dam and foundation design. Thus active or potential fault zone in
the vicinity of the dam site must be evaluated in the light of historic observed earthquake in
the area. For high risk area, the dam structure must be designed that can withstand shock
waves without damage. If historic record do not point to any earthquake hazard, even then
provision of measures tending to nullify the effects of natural disasters of all kind should be
considered as a social responsibility.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 55
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

3.17 FOUNDATION PREPERATIONS
The foundations of a dam must be able to withstand without unacceptable
deformation the loads imposed upon it by the structure, both immediately after filling the
reservoir and in the long term. With time, deterioration by saturation and percolation of water
can occur, whilst soft rocks and clays usually exhibit lower residual strengths under sustained
loading (creep) than under rapid testing. It is the 10-20m of rock immediately below the dam
that is of greatest importance.
Terzaghi's advice might well apply to foundation testing - "...because of unavoidable
uncertainties involved in the fundamental assumptions of the theories and the numerical
values of the soil constants, simplicity is of much greater importance than accuracy." The
Engineer must use all the available resources, concentrating on the zones of foundation that
appear weak and that will be subject to stresses once loaded.
Introduction
If it is economically feasible, all material under the base of a proposed dam which
could cause excessive settlement and leakage should be removed. If this cannot be done, the
dam design should be modified to take account of such material. Sometimes it may be
necessary to remove material to considerable depths in isolated areas of the foundation. This
is known as dental work. The general overall removal of material is termed stripping,
whereas the removal of loose masses of rocks on the abutments is termed scaling. The
engineering geologist has to determine the expected depth of weathered or unsound rock or
overburden that must be removed in advance of construction. Further it has to be ascertained
about the vertical side angles of all cut-slopes (short or long periods) required for power
house, spillway, chute, stilling basin, plunge pool, etc. Also required is the compressive
strength, shear strength and water tightness of various rock formations.
Foundation program
A planned program of foundation excavation should be initiated with the view that the
volume of excavation and configuration of the excavation will approximate reasonably to the
plans and specifications established. It is the responsibility of the construction engineer to
ensure slopes for excavations will be permanently stable or will not fail during construction.
In earth materials slopes of 1.5:1 to 2:1 are excavated in permanent cuts and slopes of 1:1 are
established in temporary cuts, except where unusual conditions are anticipated. In bedrock
that is not closely fractured or does not contain inclined planes of potential slippage, such as
bedding planes in weak rocks, slopes are excavated at angles up to the vertical.
Problematic foundation materials
In foundations in unconsolidated material excavation of natural deposits may reveal
inadequate localized or widespread foundation materials that require special treatment or total
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 56
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

removal. Unacceptable or inadequate materials rich in organic substances such as topsoil,
swamp muck or peat, loose deposits of sand or silt, talus accumulations and plastic, active,
sensitive, or swelling clays. Poor foundation conditions in rocks are associated with close
fracturing, weathering or hydrothermal alteration, or poorly indurated sedimentary rocks.
Excavation in bedrock
The objective of excavation is the preparation of a clean surface that will provide
optimum contact with the dam materials, whether earth or concrete is to be placed on that
surface. Therefore excavations in bedrock should extend into firm, fresh rock. Any closely
fractured zones extending downward, especially if containing soft altered materials such as
clay gouge or other products of weathering, should be removed if feasible.
Prolonged exposure of both earth and rock foundations to the atmosphere or to water
frequently results in deterioration by hydration, dehydration, frost action, shrinkage, and
expansion with changes in temperature. It is good practice to protect reactive surfaces that
will be exposed for long periods of time with bituminous materials. Alternatively, original
cover is not removed until final cleanup and just prior to placement of the dam.
Construction on unconsolidated deposits
At an ideal site, excavations in unconsolidated deposits should extend to solid
bedrock for the full width of the dam, whether it is constructed of concrete or earth/rock fill.
However, there are many locations where the depth of the valley fill is so great that dams
must be constructed in part or entirely on unconsolidated deposits (Tarbela dam). Where this
is the case steps must be taken to improve the engineering properties of the foundation
materials and to reduce subsurface seepage to allowable levels.
Except for low dams of small gross weight, concrete dams are not built on
unconsolidated deposits because of their generally low bearing strength. Larger dams
constructed in whole or in part on unconsolidated deposits should without exception, be earth
or rockfill dams with the capacity to adjust to settlement in the foundation materials.
Preparation of foundation for concrete dam
The extent of the work that will be necessary in the foundations for a concrete dam
will be determined by two main factors, their strength to sustain the loads that will be
imposed by dam and the reservoir water, and the effect of water entering the foundations
under pressure from the reservoir.
Generally the quality of foundations for a gravity dam will improve with depth of
excavation however the abutments for an arch dam often do not improve with distance
excavated into the sides of the valley. Deterioration of clay could endanger the dam and/or
lead to collapse of abutments downstream from the dam.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 57
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

Frequently the course of the river has been determined by geological faults or
weaknesses; proving of the river bed is therefore of first importance in the investigation
stage. The depth to be excavated will depend upon the nature of the infilling material, the
shape of the excavated zone, and the depth of cutoff necessary to ensure an acceptable
hydraulic gradient after the reservoir is filled.
Concrete dams may be constructed on foundations other than massive rock, i.e.
shales, glacial deposits or even sand for river works. Each case must be examined relative to
permeability, settlement, and load-carrying capacity (vertical and horizontal).
The final preparation of the foundation should be undertaken just prior to the
placement of concrete. It should include the removal of loose rock and all debris, roughening
of smooth rock surfaces, washing down of all surfaces, and the removal of excess water from
pools to leave a clean damp surface to receive the concrete.
3.18 GRANULAR MATERIALS IN FOUNDATIONS & FOR CONSTRUCTION
(Golze p-151)
Dams are occasionally built over granular foundations. In addition granular materials
are required for constructing earthfill dams and also impermeable core of rock fill dam. A
deep understanding of engineering properties of granular soils is important.
Granular materials are resultant of weathering of rocks over geological time scale.
Most frequently the weathering products are transported to other sites by water, ice, wind.
Various landforms of granular deposits are:
1. Fluvial Soils: Soils whose properties have been affected in-situ by action of water to
which they have been subjected. Common characteristics are roundness of individual grains
considerable sorting action, soil is stratified with lenses, strata may be thick or thin, and small
range of grain sizes in each stratum. Further divided as:
a) Torrential outwash. When the steep channels debounch onto plains the sediments
are deposited as an alluvial fans, as small deposits of steeply sloping coarse rock
fragments to gently sloping plains of fine grained alluvium. Coarse materials
deposited first. Sands and gravel sub-rounded to sub-angular. These are good
source of sand and gravels for construction purposes.
b) Valley fill materials: Flood plain deposits of generally finer materials., more
stratified generally flat, stream shape explain nature of deposits, braided silt,
sand, gravel, meandering fine grain soils, flood plain as common source of
construction material (sand, gravel) for concrete and dam shell material. Mining
from d/s areas is unfeasible until a positive cutoff is provided. It can also affect
tail water levels d/s of mining area ultimately affecting out let and spillway stilling
basin design. River bank terraces from an early stage of valley development can
provide good amounts of sand and gravel of excellent quality.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 58
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

c) Lake beds: These are formed out of sedimentation of fine grain silt and clay in still
water. Stratification is usually weak. Materials are usually impervious,
compressible and of low shear strength. Cracking clays be present. Can be used
for imperious core of earthfill dams.
2) Glacial Deposits: These are formed due to grinding action of glaciers during its
advancing and retreats. These deposits are heterogeneous and difficult to explore
economically. These contain wide range of particle sizes, and particles are typically sub-
rounded to sub-angular with flat sides.
a) Moraine Deposits: Deposits formed from ice movement, heterogeneous mix of
cobbles, gravel, sand and some non-plastic fines. Flat to slightly undulating
surface. Large accumulation at tip.
b) Glacial outwash. These are deposits from glacial melt water.
3) Aelian Deposits: These are soils formed from blown wind and two types are dune
sands and loess. These are very rich in quartz and in fine to medium range sand with no
cohesive strength, high permeability and moderate compressibility. Loess has ability of
standing in vertical faces due to presence of small amount of clay which binds the soil grains
together. These fall in ML or ML-CL boundary group
4) Residual Soils. These are in-place weathered rock soil particles. Undefined dividing
line between parent rock and residual soil. Individual grains are angular and soft. Working
and handling reduces grain size, thus difficult to predict performance. Talus and land slides
are examples.
3.19 SOIL CLASSIFICATION
Soil is aggregate of uncemented mineral grains. Soils are classified on the basis of
percentage of various size grains in terms of clay, silt, sand, gravels to describe its potential
to produce crops. (See figure of soil classification triangle). Engineers are interested in soil
physical properties as unit weight, permeability, shear strength, compressibility and
interaction with water. Unified soil classification system is widely accepted by engineers.
This classification system is developed jointly by US Bureau of Reclamation, Corps of
Engineers and Prof. Casagrande. The system is usable for both visual - manual examination
as well as laboratory testing. The system is based on:
percentage of various soil fractioning
shape of grain size distribution curve
plasticity and compressibility characteristics of very fine grains
The system has established 15 distinctive soil groups (with a 2 letter symbol and a name) as
given in Table 3.3. The identification is based on:
1. Visual method: simple manual tests and visual observations to estimate size and
distribution of coarse grains and plasticity of fine grains.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 59
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

2. Laboratory method: Use lab tests for size gradation, moisture content (soil
consistency) other basic soil properties. Help in precise delineation of soil group.

Figure 3.25: Typical soil gradation chart.

Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 60
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies





























C: Gap graded soils.

Figure 3.26: Examples of soil gradation (USBR p-129).
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 61
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

Table 3.3: Grading of soils.
Major Divisions Group
symbol
Typical Names Field identification procedure Information required for
describing soils
1 2 3 4 5 6
C
o
a
r
s
e

g
r
a
i
n
e
d

s
o
i
l
s

M
o
r
e

t
h
a
n

5
0
%

m
a
t
e
r
i
a
l

l
a
r
g
e
r

t
h
a
n

#
2
0
0

s
i
e
v
e

s
i
z
e

G
r
a
v
e
l
s
:

M
o
r
e

t
h
a
n

h
a
l
f

o
f

c
o
a
r
s
e

f
r
a
c
t
i
o
n

l
a
r
g
e
r

t
h
a
n

#

4

i

C
l
e
a
n

g
r
a
v
e
l
s

(
l
i
t
t
l
e

o
r

n
o

f
i
n
e
s
)


GW
Well graded gravels,
gravel-sand mixtures,
little or no fines
Wide range in grain sizes and
substantial amounts of all intermediate
particle sizes
For undisturbed soils add
information on
stratification, degree of
compaction, cementation,
moisture conditions and
drainage characteristics.

Give typical name, indicate
approximate % of sand,
gravel, max size,
angularity, surface
condition, hardness of
coarse grains, local or
geologic name, and other
features and symbol.

Example: Silty sand,
gravely, about 20% hard,
angular gravel particles
in max size, rounded and
subangular, sand grains
coarse to fine; about 15%
non plastic fines with low
dry strength; well
compacted and moist in
place, alluvial sand (SM).

GP
Poorly graded gravels,
gravel-sand mixtures,
little or no fines
Predominantly one size or a range of
sizes with some intermediate sizes
missing
G
r
a
v
e
l
s

w
i
t
h

f
i
n
e
s

(
a
p
p
r
e
c
i
a
b
l
e

a
m
o
u
n
t

o
f

f
i
n
e
s
)


GM

Silty gravels, gravel-
sand-silt mixtures
Non plastic fines or fines with low
plasticity (procedure as for MC below)

GC

Clayey gravels, gravel-
sand-clay mixtures
Plastic fines
(procedure as for CL below)
S
a
n
d
s
:

M
o
r
e

t
h
a
n

h
a
l
f

o
f

c
o
a
r
s
e

f
r
a
c
t
i
o
n

s
m
a
l
l
e
r

t
h
a
n

#

4

s
i
e
v
e

C
l
e
a
n

s
a
n
d
s

(
l
i
t
t
l
e

o
r

n
o

f
i
n
e
s
)


SW
Well graded sands,
gravely sands, little or
no fines
Wide range in grain sizes and
substantial amounts of all intermediate
particle sizes

SP
Poorly graded sands,
gravely sands, little or
no fines
Predominantly one size or a range of
sizes with some intermediate sizes
missing
S
a
n
d
s

w
i
t
h

f
i
n
e
s

(
a
p
p
r
e
c
i
a
b
l
e

a
m
o
u
n
t

o
f

f
i
n
e
s
)


SM


Silty sands, sand-silt
mixtures
Non plastic fines or fines with low
plasticity (procedure as for MC below)

SC
Clayey sands, sand clat
mixtures
Plastic fines
(procedure as for CL below)
F
i
n
e

g
r
a
i
n
e
d

s
o
i
l
s
:

M
o
r
e

t
h
a
n

5
0
%

m
a
t
e
r
i
a
l

s
m
a
l
l
e
r

t
h
a
n

#

2
0
0

s
i
e
v
e

s
i
z
e

Identification procedure
Dry
strength
Dialatancy Toughness
Silts and Clay
Liquid limit less
than 50%

ML
Inorganic silts and very
fine sands, rock flour,
silty or clayey fine
sands or clayey silts
with slight plasticity
None to
slight
Quick to
slow
None Give typical names.
Indicate degree and
character of plasticity,
amount and maximum
size of coarse grains,
color in wet condition,
odor if any, local or
geologic name, and other
pertinent descriptive
information; and symbol..

For undisturbed soils add
information on structure,
stratification, consistency
in undisturbed and
remolded states, moisture
and drainage conditions.

Example: Clayey silt loam:,
brown, slightly plastic,
small percentage of fine
sand, numerous vertical
root holes, firm and dry in
place, loess (ML).

CL
Inorganic clays of low
to medium plasticity,
gravely clays, sandy
clays, silty clays, lean
clays
Medium
to high
None to
very slow
medium

OL
Organic silts and
organic silty clays of
low plasticity
Slight to
medium
Slow Slight
Silts and clays
Liquid limit more
than 50%

MH
Inorganic silts,
micaceous or
diatomaceous, fine
sandy or silty soils,
elastic silts
Slight to
medium
Slow to
none
Slight to
medium

CH
Inorganic clay of high
plasticity, fat clays.
High to
very high
None High

OH
Organic clays of
medium to high
plasticity, organic silts
Medium
to high
None to
very slow
Slight to
medium

Highly organic soils
Pt
Peat and other highly
organic soils.
Readily identified by color, odor,
spongy feel and frequently by fibrous
texture.

Table 3.3 continued on next page
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 62
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

(Table 3.3 Continued)
Major Divisions Group
symbol
Laboratory classificationcriteria
1 2 6 7
C
o
a
r
s
e

g
r
a
i
n
e
d

s
o
i
l
s

M
o
r
e

t
h
a
n

5
0
%

m
a
t
e
r
i
a
l

l
a
r
g
e
r

t
h
a
n

#
2
0
0

s
i
e
v
e

s
i
z
e

G
r
a
v
e
l
s
:

M
o
r
e

t
h
a
n

h
a
l
f

o
f

c
o
a
r
s
e

f
r
a
c
t
i
o
n

l
a
r
g
e
r

t
h
a
n

#

4

s
i
e
v
e

C
l
e
a
n

g
r
a
v
e
l
s

(
l
i
t
t
l
e

o
r

n
o

f
i
n
e
s
)


GW

D
e
t
e
r
m
i
n
e

%

o
f

g
r
a
v
e
l

a
n
d

s
a
n
d

f
r
o
m

g
r
a
i
n

s
i
z
e

c
u
r
v
e
.

D
e
p
e
n
d
i
n
g

o
n

p
e
r
c
e
n
t
a
g
e

o
f

f
i
n
e
s

(
f
r
a
c
t
i
o
n

s
m
a
l
l
e
r

t
h
a
n

#

2
0
0

s
i
e
v
e

s
i
z
e
)

c
o
a
r
s
e

g
r
a
i
n
e
d

s
o
i
l
s

a
r
e

c
l
a
s
s
i
f
i
e
d

a
s

f
o
l
l
o
w
s
.

L
e
s
s

t
h
a
n

5
%







G
W
,


G
P
,


S
W
,


S
P

M
o
r
e

t
h
a
n

1
2
%




G
M
,


G
C
,


S
M
,


S
C

5

t
o

1
2
%














B
o
r
d
e
r
l
i
n
e

c
a
s
e

(
u
s
e

d
u
a
l

s
y
m
b
o
l
s
)


Uniformity coefficient Cu > 6,
Coefficient of curvature Cc between 1 and 6

GP


Not meeting all gradation requirements for GW
G
r
a
v
e
l
s

w
i
t
h

f
i
n
e
s

(
a
p
p
r
e
c
i
a
b
l
e

a
m
o
u
n
t

o
f

f
i
n
e
s
)


GM


Atterberg limits below A line or PI
less than 4

Above A line with PI
between 4 and 7 are
borderline cases requiring
use of dual symbols.

GC


Atterberg limits above A line or PI
greater than 7
S
a
n
d
s
:

M
o
r
e

t
h
a
n

h
a
l
f

o
f

c
o
a
r
s
e

f
r
a
c
t
i
o
n

s
m
a
l
l
e
r

t
h
a
n

#

4

s
i
e
v
e

C
l
e
a
n

s
a
n
d
s

(
l
i
t
t
l
e

o
r

n
o

f
i
n
e
s
)


SW


Uniformity coefficient Cu > 4,
Coefficient of curvature Cc between one and 3

SP


Not meeting all gradation requirements for GW
S
a
n
d
s

w
i
t
h

f
i
n
e
s

(
a
p
p
r
e
c
i
a
b
l
e

a
m
o
u
n
t

o
f

f
i
n
e
s
)


SM


Atterberg limits below A line or PI
less than 4

Limits plotting in hatched
zone with PI between
4 and 7 are borderline
cases requiring use of
dual symbols.
SC


Atterberg limits above A line or PI
greater than 7
F
i
n
e

g
r
a
i
n
e
d

s
o
i
l
s
:

M
o
r
e

t
h
a
n

5
0
%

m
a
t
e
r
i
a
l

s
m
a
l
l
e
r

t
h
a
n

#

2
0
0

s
i
e
v
e

s
i
z
e






Fig. 3.27: Soil plasticity chart for laboratory classification of fine grained soils.
Silts and Clay
Liquid limit less
than 50%
ML

CL

OL

Silts and clays
Liquid limit
more than 50%

MH

CH

OH

Highly organic soils
Pt
Table 3.3 continued on next page
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 63
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


(Table 3.3 Continued)
Procedures and Criteria for Visual Classification of Fine-Grained Soils
Select a representative sample of the material for examination and remove particles larger than the No. 40 sieve (medium
sand and larger) until a specimen equivalent to about a handful of representative material is available. Use this specimen for
performing the identification tests.
Identification Criteria for Fine-Grained Soils.The tests for identifying properties of fines are dry strength, dilatency,
toughness, and plasticity.
1. Dry strength.Select from the specimen enough material to mold into a ball about 1 in (25 mm) in diameter. Mold or
work the material until it has the consistency of putty, adding water if necessary. From the molded material, make at
least three test specimens. Each test specimen should be a ball of material about in (12 mm) in diameter. Allow the
test specimens to dry in air or sun, or dry by artificial means, as long as the temperature does not exceed 60 degrees
Centigrade (EC). In most cases, it will be necessary to prepare specimens and allow them to dry over night. If the test
specimen contains natural dry lumps, those that are about in (12 mm) in diameter may be used in place of molded
balls. (The process of molding and drying usually produces higher strengths than are found in natural dry lumps of soil).
Test the strength of the dry balls or lumps by crushing them between the fingers and note the strength as none, low,
medium, high, or very high according to the criteria below. If natural dry lumps are used, do not use the results of any
of the lumps that are found to contain particles of coarse sand.
None: The dry specimen crumbles with mere pressure of handling.
Criteria for describing dry strength
Low: The dry specimen crumbles with some finger pressure.
Medium: The dry specimen breaks into pieces or crumbles with considerable finger pressure.
High: The dry specimen cannot be broken with finger pressure. Specimen will break into pieces between thumb and a
hard surface.
Very High: The dry specimen cannot be broken between thumb and a hard surface. The presence of high-strength, water-
soluble cementing materials, such as calcium carbonate, may cause exceptionally high dry strengths. The presence of
calcium carbonate can usually be detected from the intensity of the reaction with dilute hydrocloric acid (HCl). Criteria
for reaction with HCl are presented in a subsequent paragraph.
2. Dilatancy.Select enough material from the specimen to mold into a ball about in (12 mm) in diameter. Mold the
material, adding water if necessary, until it has a soft, but not sticky, consistency. Smooth the soil ball in the palm of
one hand with the blade of a knife or spatula. Shake horizontally (the soil ball), striking the side of the hand vigorously
against the other hand several times. Note the reaction of the water appearing on the surface of the soil. Squeeze the
sample by closing the hand or pinching the soil between the fingers and note reaction as none, slow, or rapid according
to the criteria below. The reaction criteria are the speeds with which water appears while shaking and disappears while
squeezing.
None No visible change in the specimen.
Criteria for describing dilatancy
Slow Water slowly appears on the surface of the specimen during shaking and does not disappear or disappears slowly
upon squeezing.
Rapid Water quickly appears on the surface of the specimen during shaking and disappears upon squeezing.
3. Toughness.Following completion of the dilatancy test, the specimen is shaped into an elongated pat and rolled by hand
on a smooth surface or between the palms into a thread about c in (3 mm) diameter. (If the sample is too wet to roll
easily, spread the sample out into a thin layer and allow some water loss by evaporation). Fold the sample threads and
reroll repeatedly until the thread crumbles at a diameter of about c in (3 mm) when the soil is near the plastic limit. Note
the time required to reroll the thread to reach the plastic limit. Note the pressure required to roll the thread near the
plastic limit. Also, note the strength of the thread. After the thread crumbles, the pieces should be lumped together and
kneaded until the lump crumbles. Note the toughness of the material during kneading. Describe the toughness of the
thread and lump as low, medium, or high according to the criteria below.
Low Only slight pressure is required to roll the thread near the plastic limit. The thread and the lump are weak and soft.
Criteria for describing toughness
Medium Medium pressure is required to roll the thread to near the plastic limit. The thread and the lump have medium
stiffness.
High Considerable pressure is required to roll the thread to near the plastic limit. The thread and the lump have very high
stiffness.
4. Plasticity.On the basis of observations made during the toughness test, describe the plasticity of the material according
to the criteria given below.
Nonplastic A 3-mm thread cannot be rolled at any water content.
Criteria for describing plasticity
Low The thread can barely be rolled, and the lump cannot be formed when drier than the plastic limit.
Medium The thread is easy to roll, and not much time is required to reach the plastic limit. The thread cannot be rerolled
after reaching the plastic limit. The lump crumbles when drier than the plastic limit.
High It takes considerable time rolling and kneading to reach the plastic limit. The thread can be rolled several times after
reaching the plastic limit. The lump can be formed without crumbling when drier than the plastic limit. Based on the dry
strength, dilatency, toughness, and plasticity tests, decide on whether the soil is an organic or an inorganic fine grained soil.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 64
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies


Figure 3.27: Plasticity chart for laboratory classification of fine grained soils.

Materials described as (gravel > #4, sands #4-#200, silt+clay <#200)
Coarse-grained, soils (gravel G, sand S modified by grading uniformity W-well graded, P-
poor graded). Sub-divisions are
GW well graded gravel, GP poor graded gravel
GM silty gravel (with 5-10% fines of little or no plasticity)
GC clayey gravel sand (with 5-10% fines of slight to medium/ plasticity).
SW well graded sand SP poor graded sand
SM silty sand with fines of little/no plasticity
SC clayey sand with fines of slight to medium plasticity
Fine grained (silt+ clays) < 200 sieve. Main groups are: M silt, C clay, O organic
soils modified with liquid limit as: ; L low liquid limit, H high liquid limit. Sub
divisions are:
CL lean clay ML silt
OL organic clay (on or above A-line) or organic silt (below A-line)
CH fat clay MH elastic silt
OH organic clay (on or above A-line) or organic silt (below A-line)
Boundary soil. Soils falling on boundary of fine and coarse grained and are given dual
symbol. This is used when % of fines is 5 to 12% or 45 to 55%.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 65
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

(a): Basic group names. Hatched area on plasticity chart based on (Laboratory
Classification)
CL-ML - Silty clay
GC-GM - Silty, clayey gravel
SC-SM - Silty, clayey sand
(b): Basic group names, 5 to 12 percent fines (Laboratory Classification)
GW-GM - Well graded gravel with silt
GW-GC - Well graded gravel with clay (if fines = CL-ML) else well graded gravel
with silty clay
GP-GM - Poorly graded gravel with silt
GP-GC - Poorly graded gravel with clay (if fines = CL-ML) Poorly graded gravel
with silty clay
SW-SM - Well graded sand with silt
SW-SC - Well graded sand with clay (if fines = CL-ML) Well graded sand with silty
clay
SP-SM - Poorly graded sand with silt
SP-SC - Poorly graded sand with clay (if fines =CL-ML) Poorly graded sand with
silty clay
Augur holes 4 dia are made to retrieve soil samples for visual or lab tests. Samples are
obtained at all depths at short intervals. Larger dia augur if gravel/cobles are expected.
Samples may be disturbed or undisturbed. Samples may be obtained from test pits, trenches,
tunnel/addits excavations, augure borings, rotary drillings, etc. Very fine grained soils may be
grouped by using USDA soil triangle (Fig. 3. 28)
The general engineering properties of various soil groups is given in Table 3.? .
However lab tests must also be done.
3.20 EMBANKMENT MATERIALS
Huge quantities of materials are required for fill of embankments. Tarbela dam
required 106 million cubic meters (85,855 acre feet) of fill material. Availability of the
construction material (in terms of quantity and quality) has a profound impact on the choice
of the dam type. Most materials are suitable for use as shell and core. Unsuitable materials
are those which will deteriorate in the fill such as soil with soluble salts, organic matter.
Almost all soils can be used to construct an earthfill embankment.
The exploration for embankment materials begin at same time as foundation
investigations (Sherard p-263). The possible borrow areas are selected through
reconnaissance surveys, study of aerial photographs, geologic maps. Exploration proceeds in
stages moving outward from dam site, until enough borrow soils have been found. Following
factors must be studied


Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 66
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies
















Figure 3.28: USDA soil classification system (USBR 2001. p-121).
i. Nature and thickness of top soils to avoid mixing up during excavations.
ii. Relative elevation of borrow area: to determine grade of haul roads.
iii. Natural water content, its seasonal fluctuations and need for draining or irrigating it in
the embankment:
iv. Quantity of oversized cobbles which would have to be removed before compaction.
v. Influence of excavation on appearance and operation of dam these sites should not
pose underlying pervious areas. No borrow close to dam.
The fill materials are evaluated for:
- Permeability - Density
- Stability - Shear strength
- Compression and shrinkage - Proctor compaction
- Piping and washing out of fines, - Economics of utilization
Various tests conducted on potential embankment fill materials include following.
Water Contents
These tests may be done in-situ or in a lab.

Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 67
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

Permeability
Soil less than 1 ft/year (10
-6
cm/s) are considered as impervious. Pervious soils may
have K of 100 ft/year (10
-4
The permeability of soil may change when compacted in embankments. A pervious
gravelly or sandy soil with some fines can become quite impervious after compaction,
especially when course grains are well graded. To get imperviousness, adequate compaction
and proper gradation (minimum of fines and max of coarse grains) are required.
cm/s) or more. Both pervious and impervious materials are needed
for dam construction in varying amounts.
Stability
Ability of compacted embankment to resist shear force reflect stability. This depend
on factors as grain size, gradation, grain shape and drainability. Larger well graded grains,
better stability and shear resistance. Finer soils develop pore water pressure which reduces
shear resistance.
Compression and Shrinkage
Soil high in clay content compress under land of upper layers and develop high pore
water pressure. This is not desireable. Such materials can also shrink and crack on drying
during construction shut downs and extended low reservoir periods. Upper layers should be
reworked to improve.
Piping and Washing of Fines
Washing of fines from u/s & d/s slope be protected by providing graded filter and
riprap.
3.22 FIELD TEST
i. Field Permeability.
(In-situ test.) Tests are carried out by using pump out, method below water level and
pump in method above water level. Test over whole depth of the bore hole or packers may be
used to test over partial length. Test for each identified layer (both horizontal or vertical K).
For large deposits pumping drawdown test is conducted.
ii. In-place Density Test.
Sand density test. (test hole filled with sand of known ). weight sample. Small dia
hole for fine soils. Large cubic excavation/hole for gravely soil. If clean hole be dug, volume
by measurements of hole size. If broken hole, volume by sand displacement.
3.23 LAB TESTS
I. Fill materials tests
1. Particle gradation:
a. dia < 200 sieve hydrometer analysis
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 68
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

b. Dia # 4 to # 200 sieve Standard sieve analysis
c. dia > # 4 sieve. Sieve with clear square openings (size in inches)
Determine uniformity coefficient (Cu = d
60
/d
10
d = particle size by % passing) and
Coefficient of curvature (Cc = (d
30
)
2
/[d
10
x d
60
2. Water Content: Test by weighing, oven drying & weight again
]
3. Atterberg Limit:
Plastic limit PL by rolling 1/8 dia threads
Liquid limit LL by using casagrande apparatus (blows required to make the soil to
flow)
Plasticity index = LL-PL
4. Specific gravity
5. Proctor compaction test (max. dry density)
greatest dry unit weight obtainable by compactions.
Optimum water content water content at max. dry density
Proctor mold soil filled in mold in 3 layers, compacted by standard blow.
Compacted weight measured
Penetration test: Forcing proctor needle into compacted sample
6. Relative density: State of compactness of a soil in comparison to loosest and densest
state at which it can be placed by lab methods.
min max
max
e e
e e
D
d

=
7. Shear strength test under i. Undrained or Q (quick) test, ii. Consolidated undrained or
R (rapid) test, iii. Consolidated drained or S (slow) test. (Fig. 3.26). [for c, c, , ]
II. Riprap and aggregate tests
1. Specific gravity
2. Abrasion resistance of crushed rock and natural and crushed gravel (wear test)
3. Soundness test (sodium sulfhate test) - indicate ability of rock/gravel to resist
weathering.




Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 69
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies












Figure 3.29: Shear strength of compacted soils. (USBR 2001, p.138)
3.23 TEST EMBANKMENTS
Test embanks may be used for medium to large dams to gain increase in
understanding of best methods of placing the material and consequent improvement in the
specifications. This results in improved design and reduced costs. This also reflects needs and
special problems in handling/processing the embankment fill materials.
The main problems which can be studied with test embankments.
1. The best method and difficulty of excavation and placing the materials with respect to
water content, mixing and blending, problems of over sized rocks, segregation,
scarification of layers and compaction.
2. The shrinkage problem.
3. The shear strength and permeability of materials in the test fill as contrast to lab tests.
4. To test if a certain borrow material can be using for a specific purpose (pervious fill or
core)
5. To determine if a proposed material can be placed during racing weather
6. To determine best way to mix two materials
7. to determine if water content of a material can be practically lowered during
construction.
8. It provides unexpected valuable lessons.
9. Efforts require for compaction of rocks. (we know less about rock compactions)
10. Crushing of large rock pieces at dam site or a crushing plant to form an impervious
soil from weathered rock masses.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 70
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

3.25 CONCRETE AGGREGATES
Large quantities of concrete are required for dam construction even for earth/rock fill
dams. Concrete require coarse and fine aggregates (gravel and sand). Economy of
construction dictates that enough quantities of aggregate are available within reasonable
haulage distance from the site. Highest quality aggregate may not always be the best choice.
These materials may be available is ready to use size/quality or some rock processing
(crushing/sorting/grading) may be needed. Cost of additional processing be compared with
cost of obtaining aggregates from amore distant source.
Aggregates should be tested in Lab for crushing strength, specific gravity (high values
materials hard and tough), chemical content (sodium and magnesium sulfate soundness
test), workability (shape and size of particles and proportion of small fractions.
Angular grains require more cement sand and water. Flat and elongated particles
liable to fear the matrix during finishing operations. Sands required of uniform grading from
coarse to fine. Coarse sand require more cement, Fine sand require more water
Aggregates be tested against contaminants as
% by weight Max. for Fine Coarse
Coal 1 1
Clay lumps 1 0.25
Shale 1 1
Materials passing 200 sieve 3 1
Other substances (alkali, Mica, coated 2 1
grains, flaky Particles, loam
Sum of all contaminants 5 3

3.26 DESCRIPTION OF THE PHYSICAL PROPERTIES OF SOIL
Descriptive information for classification and reporting soil properties such as
angularity, shape, color, moisture conditions, and consistency are presented in the following
paragraphs.
Angularity
Angularity is a descriptor for coarse-grained materials only. The angularity of the
sand (coarse sizes only), gravel, cobbles, and boulders, are described as angular, sub-angular,
sub-rounded, or rounded as indicated by the criteria below. A range of angularity may be
stated, such as: sub-rounded to rounded.
Criteria for describing angularity of coarse-grained particles
Angular Particles have sharp edges and relatively planar sides with unpolished
surfaces.
Sub-angular Particles are similar to angular description but have rounded edges.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 71
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

Sub-rounded Particles have nearly planar sides but wellrounded corners and edges.
Rounded Particles have smoothly curved sides and no edges.
Shape
Describe the shape of the gravel, cobbles, and boulders as flat, elongated or flat
and elongated if they meet the criteria given below. Indicate the fraction of the particles that
have the shape, such as: one-third of gravel particles are flat. If the material is to be processed
or used as aggregate for concrete, note any unusually shaped particles.
Criteria for describing particle shape
The particle shape is described as follows, where length, width, and thickness refer to the
greatest, intermediate, and least dimensions of a particle, respectively.
Flat Particles with width/thickness >3.
Elongated Particles with length/width >3.
Flat and elongated Particles meet criteria for both flat and elongated.
Color
Color is an especially important property in identifying organic soils and is often
important in identifying other types of soils. Within a given locality, color may also be useful
in identifying materials of similar geologic units. Color should be described for moist
samples. Note if color represents a dry condition. If the sample contains layers or patches of
varying colors, this should be noted, and representative colors should be described. The
Munsel Color System may be used for consistent color descriptions.
Odor
Describe the odor if organic or unusual. Soils containing a significant amount of
organic material usually have a distinctive odor of decaying vegetation. This is especially
apparent in fresh samples, but if the samples are dried, the odor often may be revived by
heating a moistened sample. If the odor is unusual, such as that of a petroleum product or
other chemical, the material should be described and identified if known. The material may
be hazardous, and combustion or exposure should be considered.
Moisture Conditions
Describe the moisture condition as dry, moist, or wet, as indicated by the criteria
below.
Criteria for describing moisture condition
Dry Absence of moisture, dusty, dry to the touch.
Moist Damp but no visible water.
Wet Visible free water, usually soil is below water table.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 72
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

Consistency
Describe consistency (degree of firmness) for intact finegrained soils as very soft,
soft, firm, hard, or very hard, as indicated by the criteria given below. This observation is
inappropriate for soils with significant amounts of gravel. Pocket penetrometer or torvane
testing may supplement this data.
Criteria for describing consistency of in-place or undisturbed fine-grained soils
Very soft Thumb will penetrate soil more than 1 in (25 mm).
Soft Thumb will penetrate soil about 1 in (25 mm).
Firm Thumb will indent soil about 1/4 in (5 mm).
Hard Thumb will not indent soil but readily indented with thumbnail.
Very hard Thumbnail will not indent soil.
Cementation
Describe the cementation of intact soils as weak, moderate, or strong, as indicated by
the criteria below.
Criteria for describing cementation
Weak Crumbles or breaks with handling or little finger pressure.
Moderate Crumbles or breaks with considerable finger pressure.
Strong Will not crumble or break with finger pressure.
Structure (Fabric)
Describe the structure of the soil according to criteria described below. The
descriptors presented are for soils only; they are not synonymous with descriptors for rock.
Criteria for describing structure
Stratified Alternating layers of varying material or color; note thickness.
Laminated
1
Fissured
Alternating layers of varying material or color with layers less than 6 mm
thick; note thickness.
1
Slickensided
Breaks along definite planes with little resistance to fracturing.
1
Blocky
Fracture planes appear polished or glossy, sometimes striated.
1
Lenses Inclusion of small pockets of different soils, such as small lenses of sand
scattered through a mass of clay; note thickness.
Cohesive soil that can be broken down into small angular lumps which resist
further breakdown.
Homogeneous Same color and textural or structural appearance throughout.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 73
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

(Note: Do not use for coarse-grained soils with the exception of fine sands which can be
laminated.)
Additional Descriptive Information
Additional descriptive information may include unusual conditions, geological
interpretation or other classification methods, such as:
Presence of roots or root holes or other organic material or debris;
Degree of difficulty in drilling or auguring hole or excavating a pit;
or Raveling or caving of the trench, hole, pit, or exposure;
or Presence of mica or other predominant minerals.























Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 74
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

Geology of Kurram Tangi Dam
The strata flanks is made of sand stone (soft to medium/hard to very hard),
conglomerate with pebbles of limestone, sand stone, and shale (thirty bedded,
blocky and sparely jointed).
Valley is 150 wide, 20 to 30 ft deep consisting of mix of cobbles, gravel, fine to
coarse sand, etc. Gravel of quartzite, dionite, limestone and sand stone.
Sand stone well exposed on valley wells.
Foundations are stable (4000-10700 pm crushing strength) with modulous of
deformation as 755000 to 14,600,000 psi
Permeability vary considerably. 2-3 ingeous at KTV-1, 114-193 at KTV-2.
The nearby seismic faults are sughar fault, Kala Bagh fault, Kurdal fault, Bhittani
fault.
Small to medium seismic risk.
Tariq. 2008. DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 3- 75
Ch. 3: Dam Geological and Geotechnical Studies

REFERENCES
Novak et al. HYDRAULIC STRUCTURES pp-25, 85
USBR. 1967. Engineering Geology Field Manual @www.usbr.gov/prnts/geology/fieldman.htm.
USBR 1990a. Procedure for Determining Unified Soil Classification (Laboratory Method),
Earth Manual, Part II, 3rd edition, Bureau of Reclamation, U.S. Department of the
Interior, USBR-5000.
USBR. 1990b. Procedure for Determining Unified Soil Classification (Visual Method),
Earth Manual, Part II, 3rd edition. Bureau of Reclamation, U.S. Department of the
Interior, USBR-5005.
USBR. 2001. DESIGN OF SMALL DAMS. Oxford & IBH Publishing Co. New Delhi. Chapter 5
pp:107-204, chapter 6 pp 211-220
Wahlstrom, E. E. 1974. DAMS, DAM FOUNDATION AND RESERVOIRS SITES Elsevier
Scientific publishing company, Amsterdam.
Web resources:
http : // homepages . ihug . com . au/~richardw/ page 19.html, page25.html, page26.html
www.dur.ac.uk/~des0www4/cal/dams/geol/topo.htm
Other sites

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-1
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Chapter 4
EARTHFILL AND ROCKFILL EMBANKMENT DAMS
4.1 DEFINITION
International Commission on Large Dams (ICOLD) defined embankment dam as any
dam constructed of excavated materials placed without addition of binding material other
than those inherent in the natural material. The materials are usually obtained at or near the
dam site. An Earthfill Dam is an embankment dam, constructed primarily of compacted
earth materials, either homogeneous or zoned, and containing more than 50% of earth
granular materials. Contrary a Rockfill Dam is an embankment dam constructed of natural
rock materials, usually broken down to smaller fragments. Rockfill dam with all voids filled
by finer materials by hydraulic sluicing is usually regarded as earth-fill dam. An embankment
dam where large quantities of both granular materials (earth) and rock fragments are used is
called as Earthfill-Rockfill Dam.

Example of embankment dam, Stratos Dam, Greece (http://www.geoengineer.org)
I: EARTHFILL DAMS
4.2 GENERAL DESIGN CRITERIA:
Embankment dams are built to meet the following design criteria (Golze 1977 P-291,
Novak 19** P-59):
1. Stability: The foundation, abutments and embankments must be stable for all loading/
stress conditions during construction, and operation. Some distress can be tolerated
during construction.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-2
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

2. Control of Seepage: Seepage through embankment, foundation and abutments must
be small and not exert excessive uplift on the structure, create high exit gradients,
piping not permitted.
3. Overtopping and Free Board: Top of dam must be high enough to allow for
settlement of dam and foundation and to provide sufficient free board to prevent
waves at maximum pond level (during maximum flood, e.g. spillway design flood)
from overtopping the dam.
4. Maximum Flood Evacuation: Spillway and outlet capacity be large enough to
prevent overtopping of the dam (Spillway only, no other outlets) even when few (at
least one) spillway gate become stuck/inoperative.
5. Upstream Slope Protection: Slope of embankment and outlet works be stable under
all operational conditions (first filling, quick drawdown, steady pond etc). Cuts into
rock masses for placing spillway must be stable under earthquake conditions.
6. Outlet and Ancillary Works: Care must be taken to ensure that outlet or other
facilities constructed through the dam do not permit their perimeter with risk of soil
migration and piping. Same care is needed at embankment joints with abutments.
7. Stability against uplift under structures: Seepage under the various structures as
spillway, chute, stilling basins, power house, exert lot of uplift pressure, thus these
structure must be safe for this condition.
4.3 PLACEMENT OF FILL MATERIALS
Huge quantities of fill material of varying gradation are placed to form the
embankment. The embankment materials of a dam may be placed as a rolled fill or hydraulic
fill.
Rolled fill. The embankment material of requisite grading is transported to site by hauling
machinery, placed at specific locations in layers, rolled out by earth moving
machinery into layers of suitable thickness, watered and compacted by plain or sheep-
foot rollers to requisite density.
Hydraulic fill. The material containing all grades and sizes are thoroughly blended, mixed
with water, transported to site in suspension by pumps and pipes and discharged at the
dam edge in inward direction. The material gets deposited by sedimentation. Thus the
coarser particles get deposited near the edges and finer particles reach to the middle
section. The fill is usually not further compacted.
Semi-Hydraulic fill. The material in suspension is transported by hauling units and dumped
at the edge of the embankment. It is then washed in its final position by water jets.
Drainage of hydraulic fill. The excess water reaching inner part of dam percolates
horizontally to outer more pervious shell. Remainder water rises upward to the
surface, allowing the center of dam to consolidate and subside. The downward
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-3
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

movement of the core eventfully develops arching in the core and prevents its further
consolidation.
4.4 TYPE OF EARTHFILL DAMS
Earthfill dams can be of types as Homogeneous, Zoned and Diaphragm dam.
4.4.1 Homogeneous Dams
The dam embankment is made of a single type of material (Fig. 4.1). These include
fine-grained particles or coarse-grained materials. The materials are compacted mechanically
to form a watertight fill. The fill material is required to possess following properties

1
It must be capable of being placed and consolidated to form a homogeneous mass
without any potential of piping as paths of percolation through the fill or along its
contact with the foundation and abutments.
:It must be sufficiently impervious to provide an adequate barrier and prevent
excessive loss of water through the dam, the acceptable level being determined from
the safety of the structure and the value of the lost water.
The fill material should develop maximum practical shear strength under compaction
and maintain most of it after the filling of the reservoir.
It must not consolidate, soften or liquefy upon saturation.
Due to relatively finer materials, the slopes must be able to avoid sloughing. The u/s slope is
relatively flat to ensure safety against sloughing under rapid drawdown conditions after
prolonged high-level storage. The d/s slope must be protected to resist sloughing when
saturated to a high level by rainfall.







For a completely homogeneous embankment, the seepage will eventually emerge on
the d/s slope regardless of its flatness and the impermeability of the soil if reservoir level is
maintained for a sufficiently long time. The surface to the height of 1/3
rd

1
(@ www.dur.ac.uk/~des0www4/cal/dams/emba.htm/embaf1.htm)
of depth of the
reservoir will be eventually affected. The exit of seepage may induce sloughing of the dam
toe and consequently the dam embankment. Thus measures are included to intercept the
H/3
H
Seepage
Figure 4.1: Seepage through an earthfill homogeneous dam.
Phreatic/Seepage line
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-4
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

seepage flow before it reaches the d/s slope. Such a dam is then called as modified
homogeneous dam (Figs. 4.2 to 4.4). These measures include rockfill toe, horizontal d/s
drainage blanket, and a vertical or inclined chimney drain. These measures do not decrease
the seepage amount but makes the seepage exit safer with no danger of dam toe failure. A toe
drain (Fig. 4.5) is usually used in conjunction with these seepage control measures to
intercept the seepage flow and its disposal.
A homogeneous embankment should not be used for storage dam. A homogeneous
type of dam is applicable in localities where readily available soils show little or no variation
is permeability and soils of contrasting permeability are available only in minor amounts or at
considerably greater cost.






















Figure 4.3: Modified homogeneous dam with d/s horizontal drainage blanket.
H
Seepage
Phreatic/Seepage line
Figure 4.4: Modified homogeneous dam with a chimney drain and d/s horizontal drainage blanket.
H
Seepage
Phreatic/Seepage line
H
Seepage
Figure 4.2: Modified homogeneous dam with rockfill toe and graded filter.
Phreatic/Seepage line
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-5
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams











4.4.2 Zoned Embankment Dam
A zoned embankment dam is constructed of materials of more than two types. The
zoned dam has a central zone of impermeable materials flanked by zones of materials
considerably more pervious called shell or shoulders. The inner zone is usually called a core.
The shell materials enclose, support and protect the impervious core. The u/s shell provides
stability against rapid drawdown and d/s shall acts as drain to control the line of seepage. The
section as a whole show progressive increase in permeability from the center outwards
towards each slope. The core is flanked by one or more zones of graded filter.
The central impervious zone consists of clay and outer shell consists of sand, gravel,
cobbles or rock or mixture of these materials. If rock is used in shell, it is then called as
earthfill-rockfill dam (Tarbela, Mangla dams). The dam is considered as zoned dam only if
the horizontal width of the impervious zone at any elevation equals or exceeds the height of
the dam above that elevation, and is not less than 10 feet (Fig. 4.6). The maximum width of
the core is controlled by stability and seepage criteria and the availability of the material. The
outer shall due to coarse nature and good drainage, may have relatively steeper outer slope,
limited only by the strength of the foundation, the stability of the embankment itself and
maintenance/construction considerations. For better stability of a section, longer haulage of
materials may be preferred. Graded filters are provided on u/s and d/s sides of the core which
Rockfill toe or horizontal drainage blanket
Fine rock or
sand/gravel fill
Graded gravel or
crushed rock
Toe drain
Figure 4.5: Toe drain for use with rockfill toe or horizontal drainage blanket.
Dam d/s slope
H
U/S
Shell
CORE
D/S
Shell
Seepage
Filter
Figure 4.6: A zoned earthfill dam.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-6
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

acts as chimney drain. The d/s graded filter is connected with d/s horizontal drainage blanket
and toe drain for seepage outflow.
When a variety of soil materials are available, the choice of an earthfill dam should
always be a zoned embankment type because of its inherent advantage in reduced cost of
construction. The necessary arrangements are required to collect and dispose off any seepage
that does cross the impervious central zone.
4.4.3 Diaphragm Dam
This dam is similar to a zoned embankment dam with the exception that a thin
diaphragm of impervious material is provided to form a water barrier (Fig. 4.7). The bulk of
the embankment is constructed of pervious material (sand, gravel or rock). The position of
the diaphragm may vary from a blanket on the u/s face to a central vertical core. The
diaphragm may be made of earth/clay, Portland cement concrete, asphalt concrete or other
material. If the diaphragm material is earth, the horizontal thickness of the diaphragm at any
elevation is less than 10 feet or the height of the embankment above the corresponding
elevation of the dam (W h and W 10 ft). In some cases the diaphragm may be inclined.
Necessary arrangement for drainage of seepage flow is required. Graded filters are provided
on u/s and d/s sides of the core, which acts as chimney drain. The d/s graded filter is
connected with d/s horizontal drainage blanket and toe drain for seepage outflow.
The core may be vertical oriented or inclined. It can be placed near the u/s face, in the
center, or near the d/s face. The u/s and d/s faces of earthfill dam are protected by suitable
riprap.







A thin core dam becomes more economical for reasons as:
Unit cost of placing impervious materials may be more than the unit cost of placing
pervious materials.
The amount of embankment volume can be reduced in a thin core dam more effectively.
The construction time available and weather conditions may not permit the use of an
impervious core of large thickness.
H
U/S
Shell
C
O
R
E

D/S
Shell
Seepage
Filter
Figure 4.7: A diaphragm earthfill dam with central vertical core.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-7
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

The minimum thickness of core depends on a number of factors on:
1. the tolerable seepage loss;
2. minimum width which will allow proper construction (machinery considerations);
3. type of materials chosen for the core and shoulders;
4. design of proposed filter layers;
5. past experience of similar projects.
Vertical Core
The core is inclined vertical (Fig. 4.7) and is usually located in alignment with the
crest of the dam.
Advantages of vertical core
Higher pressure exists on the contact between core and the foundation, and will provide
more protection against the possibility of leakage along the contact.
Vertical core tends to be slightly thicker for a given quantity of impervious soil than the
thickness of the sloping core.
Criteria
Cores with width of 30 to 50% dam height prove satisfactory under diverse conditions.
Core with width of 15 to 20% (thin) if constructed adequately is satisfactory under most
condition.
Core with less than 10% used only if large leaks through the core would not cause dam
failure.







Inclined Core
The inclined core is oriented at an angle with the base of the dam. The core is located
closer to the u/s face of the dam with top of core aligned with the dam crest (Fig. 4.8).
H
U/S
Shell
C
O
R
E

D/S
Shell
Filter
Figure 4.8: A diaphragm earthfill dam with inclined core.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-8
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Advantages
1. Core can be constructed after completion of d/s portion of embankment. Especially
useful for short dry weather condition. Suitable to allow construction of core from fine
grained soils.
2. Foundation grouting can be continued while dam embankment is being placed (thus
smaller construction period).
3. Filter zones can be thin (smaller slanting width for same horizontal width) and are
easier to install.
Disadvantages
1. Location of core for deep foundation conditions cannot be determined in advance; thus
difficult to locate grout curtain.
2. Additional grouting, if required after dam completion, cannot be undertaken.
Location of Impervious Core/Diaphragm
The core is preferably located in the center of the dam embankment due to following
advantages.
1. The core is equally supported and is more stable during a sudden drawdown (if
constructed from earth).
2. Settlement of dam induces compressive stresses in the core, tending to make it more
compact.
3. There is less core volume.
4. Foundation grouting if required can be done post construction of the dam from the crest.
The choice of impermeable zone depends on stability of the core material. If it is strong to
resist cracking under load, a location near u/s is often the most economical. However, if core
material is weak, a central location is better.
[www.ferc/industries/hydropower/safety/eng-guide/chap4.pdf (embankment dam) and
/chap3.pdf (gravity dam)]
4.5 CONTROL OF SEEPAGE THROUGH EMBANKMENT
The seepage through the dam embankment is controlled by two steps: (1) minimize
the seepage rate and volumes and (2) streamline the any seepage to exit from the dam without
any damage to the embankment (safe seepage exit gradients).
1. Minimize the seepage: All the fill materials will allow some seepage through the
embankment. The impermeability of the core minimizes the seepage rate. Thus
permeability and the thickness of the core will ultimately set the seepage rate through the
embankment. Thus thick cores having minimum permeability materials will result in
smaller seepage rates.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-9
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

2. Contain and streamline the seepage: For a sustained high-level reservoir, the seepage
flow occurs through the dam section. The seepage emerges at the d/s face of homogeneous
and zoned dams. The seepage flow if unchecked can lead to severe piping, and sloughing
of the d/s slope and may ultimately lead to failure of the dam. Following arrangements are
used to contain and streamline the exit of seepage flow from the dam body.
4.5.1 Rockfill Toe and Toe Drain
The d/s toe of a homogeneous embankment is constituted of rockfill material with a
graded filter between the earthfill and rockfill pervious material. The seepage line will
converge towards the rockfill and is then exits safely across the d/s slope keeping the d/s
slope dry and safe. A graded filter is provided between the embankment fill material and the
rockfill toe to prevent migration of embankment materials into the rockfill toe. Frequently a
perforated toe drain of rockfill grade material (Fig. 4.5) is constructed near and below the
outer end of the toe to collect the seepage flow. A perforated pipe is embedded in a trench
filled with fine rock fill. The toe drain collects the seepage discharging from the embankment
and the foundation and lead it to an outfall into the river channel below.
Toe drains may be made of vitrified clay or concrete, perforated corrugated metal or
PVC pipe. Drains are placed in trenches below the ground surface to ensure effective
interception of seepage flow. Minimum depth below GS = 4 ft, maximum as required to
maintain uniform gradient. Bottom width of trench is 3-4 ft, pipe dia- 6 to 24 depending on
gradient, reach length, seepage rate. Drain pipe is surrounded by geotextile filter to prevent
clogging. Material surrounding drain must satisfy filter criteria. The fill materials in the
trench and surrounding the drain pipe include: Graded sand, Sand and gravel or selected fine
rock, and Graded gravel or crushed rock
4.5.2 Drainage Blanket
Blanket drains are provided under the base of embankment fill material and extend d/s
of impervious zone, impervious diaphragm or 1/4 to 1/3 base of the dam (Figs. 4.3 and 4.9).
The blanket drain will intercept the seepage line. Drainage blanket may contain one or more
layers of coarse filter grade materials of filter criteria to match with the materials on two sides
of the filter. The thickness of the blanket should be enough to carry the seepage flow to the
toe drain at the end of the blanket. The blanket drain may not provide full protection against
seepage over a stratification layer which moves horizontally over the layer and ultimately
reaches the downstream face.
Blanket drain: It may be a continuous layer along whole length of dam or may be intermittent
and connected with chimney drain. The length of the dram should reach to d/s edge of core or
u/s water depth for a uniform dam. In some cases it may extend under the core. Large length
of drain decreases the seepage flow path and increase seepage. The thickness varies 3 ft and
above. Material is of filter criteria. A toe drain or a drainage gallery is also provided at outer
end to collect the seepage.

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-10
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams









4.5.3 Chimney Drain
This is a vertical or inclined drain (made of graded filter) provided inside the dam
body (Figs 4.4, and 4.6 to 4.8). These are usually placed d/s of the impervious core and may
be vertical or inclined (30
o
120
o
The chimney drain can be equally useful for a homogeneous dam with a toe drain.
The dam fill placement and compaction in layers form a pseudo-layered condition where
seepage flow entering in one layer will continue in the same layer and will ultimately appear
on d/s slope facing leading to slope failure. The chimney drain will intercept the seepage
from these layers and lead safely to the toe drain (Fig. 4.4)
). The chimney drain may be composed of one or more
zones to match the gradation of the adjacent materials. The chimney drain intercepts the
seepage flow that crosses the core. It may be single graded or double graded depending upon
gradation of fill materials on the two sides of the chimney drain. Chimney drain is used in
conjunction with horizontal drainage blanket. Chimney drain is connected to blanket drain at
bottom or into a floor channel of drainage gallery.
4.6 FILTER CRITERIA
The filter material is placed in toe, blanket or chimney drains and its materials must
match with the gradation of the adjacent materials to ensure stability of the filter and adjacent
materials. The filter must have large flow capacity to transmit intercepted seepage flow out of
the dam body. Following criteria follows. D refers to the size of filter material (having larger
size) and d refers to the size of base (adjacent) materials having smaller size. (Sherard P-83,
USBR 2001, p-235).
Standard sieve set is used to determine the particle size gradation of fill and filter
materials. The sieve sizes are as under.
# mm # mm # mm # mm # mm
3 6.4 10 2.0 25 0.71 60 0.25 200 0.074
4 4.8 12 1.7 30 0.59 70 0.21 270 0.053
5 4.0 16 1.19 35 0.50 100 0.149 300 0.050
6 3.4 18 1.00 40 0.42 140 0.105 325 0.044
8 2.38 20 0.84 50 0.297 170 0.088 400 0.037
Dam foundation material
(fine to coarse grained)
EARTHFILL
Dam d/s slope
Fine graded filter
Coarse graded filter
Figure 4.9: D/s horizontal drainage blanket and toe drain.
Toe drain
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-11
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

The fill and filter material are characterized by Uniformity Coefficient C
U
= d
60
/d
10
and
Coefficient of Curvature as: C
C
= d
30
2
/[d
60
xd
10
] and Self-Filtering Critera C
SF
=
d
50
2
/[d
60
xd
10
1. D
]. The filter criteria is as under:
15
/d
15
2. D
= 5 to 40
15
/d
85
3. D
5 [This is to prevent migration of fines.]
85
4. Gradation curve of filter material be parallel to gradation curve of base material
(similar C
/drain opening 2 [for toe drain]
U
5. If base material contains gravel, then filter is designed on the basis of gradation curve
of the portion of the material finer than 1 sieve.
as for base material).
6. Filter should contain not more than 5% of fines passing # 200 sieves and the fines, if
any, should be cohesionless.
7. Self filtering is achieved if d
15 coarser
5 d
An alternate filter criteria for transition zone is described as under.
85 finer

* D
15
/d
15
* D
> 4-5 For sufficient permeability
15
/d
85
* D
< 4-5 To prevent migration of fines
50
/d
50
* D
< 25 To prevent migration of fines
60
/D
10
The filter may have one zone/layer or more than one zone between the adjacent fill
materials e.g. clay core and rockfill. Single or double filter layers between fine and course fill
are selected to ensure filter criteria on both sides of the filter layer. For single zone/layer filter
of Fig. 4.10(a) the filter F1 must comply both for the gradation of clay core on one side and
the gradation of rockfill on the other side. Considering the filter criteria between clay core
and filter F1 the D will refer to gradation of filter F1 and d will refer to gradation of clay
core. Considering the filter criteria between filter F1 and the rockfill the D will refer to
gradation of rockfill and d will refer to gradation of filter F1. For double zone/layer filters of
Fig. 4.10(b) the filter F2 abutting the coarser fill material (rockfill) will be coarse than filter
F1 abutting the finer fill material (clay core). The filter F1 must comply both for the
gradation of clay core on one side and the gradation of filter F2 on the other side. Similarly
the filter F2 must comply both for gradation of filter F1 on one side and the rockfill gradation
on the other side. In exceptional cases three layers/zones of filter may become necessary to
fully meet the filter criterion between fine and coarse fill materials.
< 20 For well graded filter to prevent segregation of filter
Dimensions of Filter Layer
Filter zone width and thickness is selected from point of view of its carrying capacity after
few years (when some settlement, particle rearrangement had occurred and some fines may
have settled) and its constructability.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-12
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Minimum thickness is one which can be constructed without danger of gaps or
areas of segregated materials.
Horizontal filter layers can be thin, as 6 for sand and 12 for gravel but thicker
layers are preferred.
Chimney drains or transition zones min horizontal width of the filter zone should
be 8-10 ft, 10-12 ft preferable to enable placement, handling and some
compaction.
For cost reasons or limited filter materials, 3-5 ft wide zones may be used, but
require more supervision and hand labor for good construction.










Example (USBR 2000, p-236)
Given: d
15
= 0.006 mm, d
85
D
= 0.10 mm, pipe openings = inches.
15
D
lower = 5 * 0.006 = 0.03 mm (1) [criteria 1]
15
D
upper = 40 * 0.006 = 0.24 mm (2) [criteria 1]
15
From eq 2 and 3 select smaller size, D
5 * 0.10 = 0.50 mm (3) [criteria 2]
15
upper = 0.24 mm; Average D
15
Draw filter gradation line parallel to base material gradation curve and read D
= 0.14 mm.
85
D
= 2.4 mm.
(4)
85
As D
2 * 0.5 1 (5) [criteria 3]
85
from eq (4) is smaller than from eq (5), thus a single filter layer will not work. Adopt
above criteria for 1
st
layer F1 [D
15
= 0.14 mm, D
85
= 2.4 mm] and Work for 2
nd
D
layer F2.
15
D
lower = 5 * 0.14 = 0.70 mm (6) [criteria 1]
15
upper = 40 * 0.14 = 5.6 mm (7) [criteria 1]
Clay core
Earthfill
F
i
l
t
e
r

F
1

F
i
l
t
e
r

F
2

Figure 4.10.1 Single or double zone/layer filter between clay core and gravel / coarse fill.
Clay core
Earthfill
F
i
l
t
e
r

F
1

(a) single filter zone
(b) double filter zones
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-13
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

D
15
5 * 0.24 = 12 mm (8) [criteria 2]

Figure 4.10.2: Mangla dam raising project showing core, and u/s and d/s double filter layers.

Core F1
F2 F1
F2
U/s fill
D/s fill
F1 F2
CORE
D/s fill
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-14
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Figure 4.10.3: Mangla dam raising project showing core, and double filter layers.
From eq 7 and 8 select smaller size, D
15
upper = 5.6 mm; Average D
15
Draw filter gradation line parallel to base material gradation curve and read D
= 4.0 mm.
85
D
= 50 mm. (9)
85
Select D
2 * 0.5 1 (10) [criteria 3]
85
from eq 9 and 10 as 50 mm. Then F2 = [D
15
= 4.0 mm, D
85
Dimensions and Permeability of Toe/Blanket/Chimney Drains
= 50 mm.
The dimension and permeability of the drain must be adequate to carry away the
anticipated flow with an ample margin of safety for unexpected leaks. For a relatively
impermeable foundation, then the expected leakage would be low.
A drain should be constructed of material with a coefficient of permeability of at least
10 to 100 times greater than the average embankment material.
Drain material is usually a processed material. Pit run borrow is usually too dirty (i.e.
have large fines). Drain materials must have following grading.
Particle size % passing by weight
1 90 100
45 75
# 4 (4.8 mm) 30 - 45
# 50 (0.297 mm) 4 - 10
# 100 (0.149 mm) 1 - 3
# 200 (0.074 mm) 0 - 2
Gradation should be such that it will prevent particles of soil from the adjacent location from
entering the filter and clogging it.
4.7 FOUNDATION DESIGN
Foundation includes both valley floor and the abutments. Foundation must ensure
following design requirements
1. It provides support for the embankment under all conditions of saturation and
loading.
2. It provides sufficient resistance to seepage to prevent excessive loss of water.
Foundation is not actually designed but treatments are provided in design to ensure
that all essential requirements are met.
No two foundations exactly alike, each presents its own separate and distinct
problems. Foundation improvements be adopted to local conditions.
40% dam failures attributed to failure of the foundation.
Judgment on the basis of foundation exploration and past experiences.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-15
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Foundation may be of rock, coarse grained material (sand, gravel), or fine grained
material (silt and clay)
Infinite variations in the combinations (materials), structural arrangements and
physical characteristics of the constituent materials.
Roughly stratified.
For hard foundation minimum treatment include stripping of foundation area to
remove sand, topsoil, and other unsuitable materials.
A key trench is provided to improve bonding of impervious zone of embankment to
the foundation.
4.8 ROCK FOUNDATIONS
Most rock foundations have adequate physical strength. However weathering near the
surface make is weaker and prone to excessive seepage flows. Some treatments may be done
to improve strength and/or to reduce seepage potential. The treatments includes: (see detail in
chapter 3 on Geology): 1. Stripping, 2. Strengthening of weak zones, 3. Grouting to make it
water tight. Rock foundations are very well suited for earthfill and rockfill dams.
4.9 SAND GRAVEL FOUNDATIONS
4.9.1 Characteristics
Gravel/sand foundation has enough bearing/shear strength the support small to
medium earthfill and rockfill dams.
However these foundations are very conducive to seepage and need suitable
treatment for seepage and uplift pressure control.
These materials usually are laid over impervious geological foundation at some
depth below the surface.
Usually stratified heterogeneous mixture
Excessive under seepage could lead to: Large seepage uplift pressures and Dam
failure due to piping (if fine sand is present in large quantities).
Clean sand (fine and uniform) of low density is inherently unstable due to its loose
structure and is liable to collapse under dynamic load as for earthquake.
Vibrations/shock as for an earthquake tremor causes re-adjustment of grains into a
dense structure. Pore water pressure increases suddenly (due to slow drainage) and
foundation behaves as liquid and results in sudden liquification.
Cohesionless sands of low relative density (< 50%) are suspect to failure.
4.9.2 Treatment of Foundation
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-16
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

The foundation is treated to minimize the seepage through the foundation and reduce
uplift pressures for d/s part. Various foundation treatments include positive cut-off, partial
cutoff, sheet pile, cement bound curtain, concrete wall, slurry trench, grouting, etc. These are
described below.










4.9.2.1 Positive Cut-off Trenches:
Rolled earth/clay is filled and compacted in a trench excavated to the impermeable
barrier / underlying hard bed rock (Fig. 4.11a). The compacted clay forms an impermeable
barrier to the seepage flow. The cutoff depth varies as 50 to 150 ft with 1:1 or flatter side
slopes. It is located in continuation of the embankment core u/s from centerline of dam crest,
but not beyond where cover of core becomes small. It is made of usually same material as is
suitable for dam core. Wider trench base is adopted for dams with large depth. For deeper
trench smaller base may be used as seepage force at foundation contact decrease with
increase in depth. Grouting of upper part of weathered/fractured bed rock, if required.
Generally top width as w = h d. A minimum bottom width 20 ft to allow operating
machinery. Trench below water table will require dewatering.
4.9.9.2 Partial Cutoff
The cutoff penetrates only partially into the foundation (Fig. 4.11b).
Suitable if a low K layer of considerable thickness found above the bed rock. This
layer must be aerially extensive. Thus seepage from upper more pervious layer is
intercepted.
Partial barrier be at least 95% deep to have any appreciable reduction in seepage.
Partial seepage barrier may be effective at sites where average permeability of
foundation decreases with depth.
H
U/S
Shell
CORE
D/S
Shell
Figure 4.11a: A positive cutoff for earthfill dam.
Gravel sand foundation
Bed rock
Overburden
River
bottom
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-17
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

For deep foundations the upper part is sealed off against seepage by providing a
partial cutoff and lower part may be sealed by providing sheet piling or grouting
etc below and in continuation of the partial cutoff.
In all cases a minimum partial cutoff of 6-10 ft should be provided. This trench
also provided better understanding of the subsoil conditions.











4.9.2.3 Sheet Piling Cutoff
Steel sheet pile may be driven into soft alluvium.
Depth to bed rock.
Used in combination with partial cutoff to seal lower horizons.
Not suitable for cobbles/boulders as these formations cause misalignment/ open
joints, interlock liable to tear-off, pile wander off, pile twisting making an
ineffective barrier.
Twin steel sections may be used with interior filled with cement grout.
Not completely water tight
80-90% effective if good work
Poor workmanship, efficiency less than 50%.
Seepage resistance offered by sheet pile equals 30-40 ft length of soil; field tests
show resistance equivalent of 400-2000 ft. The effectiveness increase with time
due to filling of gap by sediments, encrustation etc.

H
U/S
Shell
CORE
D/S
Shell
Figure 4.11b: A partial cutoff for earthfill dam.
Deep gravel sand foundation
Bed rock
Sheet piling or grouting etc
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-18
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.12a: Sheet pile installation at Taunsa Barrage. (L) Secondary weir, (R) Old pile
exposed. Note the pile section and the interlocking between the pile sheets.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-19
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.12b: Taunsa Barrage: Sheet pile interlocking and embedding in concrete.

Figure 4.12c: Taunsa Barrage: Sheet pile installation by vibroinstaller.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-20
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.12d: Taunsa Barrage: Sheet pile installation by vibroinstaller.

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-21
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.12e: Taunsa Barrage second weir: U/s, mid and d/s sheet pile rows.

4.9.2.4 Cement Bound Curtain Cutoff
In places piles are cast by mixing cement with foundation material (Fig. 4.13).
Curtin constructed by successive overlapping individual piles.
Each pile consist of column of sand intimately mixed with mortar to form a pile
like structure
Hole drilled, Mortar injected through hollow rotating pipe with mixer head at
bottom.
May be reinforced.





U/s Mid
D/s
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-22
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams












4.9.2.5 Concrete Wall
RCC wall build down to
the bed rock provide
positive cutoff.
Wall width 5 ft or more
Dewatering and shoring
bracing/sheeting required.
High in cost and
challenging in construction
RCC or PCC
Depths 150-200 ft in past
4.9.2.6 Slurry Trench
Trench excavated by drag
lines 5 wide or less.
Depth to impervious layer
rock surface.
Excavated material stock
piled in windrows.
Trench filled with
bentonite mud slurry
(slurry density > water
density) which prevent
Plan
Section
Figure 4.13 Cement bound curtain cutoff.
River level
Bed rock level
Pictorial
Figure 4.14 Sequential operations in the
construction of a slurry trench. (Source
USBR 2001, p-228).
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-23
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

walls from caving in. Slurry weighs more than water.
Mud slurry level above water table to keep trench sides stabilized.
Trench bottom cleared with clamshell bucket and air lift pumps
Bentonite coated excavated slurry material are further blended with 15-20% of
natural silt.
Mixture dumped on one end of trench, displacing the slurry until backfilling
complete.
Completed slurry trench in a very soft condition for many months after
construction, with consistency like a stiff butter.
Need more care if cobbles, boulders, large blocks in deeper locations.
The upper weathered/fractured part of the bed rock grouted after completion of the
slurry trench.
4.9.2.7 Grouting Alluvial Deposits
Cement grouts not injected uniformly in alluvial deposits except for coarse
material
Chemical grout can be injected in sand, but expensive
Primary difficulty of keeping hole open with casing, impossibility of using
packers, and lack of technique ensuring uniform penetration of grout
Special techniques developed for grouting in alluvium as packers can not be used
along with casing.
Coarse materials grouted successfully
Usually several rows of grout holes to increase effectiveness.
Outer rows grouted with cement and cement-clay grouts, inner rows with
chemical grout.
Results of grouting difficult to evaluate.
4.9.2.8 Horizontal U/s Impervious Blanket [Sherard p-312, Fig 6.3.2]
If construction of complete seepage barrier for a dam on pervious foundation is not
practicable, then under seepage may be reduced by increasing the width of the base of
impervious section by a horizontal impervious blanket, which is connected to the dam core.
The seepage is reduced due to lengthening of seepage path. This also reduces the d/s pore
water pressure and thus increase stability. The u/s impervious blanket is constructed of
impervious material extending u/s of the dam face toe/ heel and connected with impervious
core of the dam embankment (Fig. 4.15).
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-24
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

These may be used in conjunction with partial cutoff located at u/s end or any
other location (e.g. Tarbela, Khanpur dam).
Blanket is generally used for a stream channel or valley floor of sand and gravel.
This may also be required for portions of abutments to reduce seepage through the
abutments.
Blanket starts from core of the dam and extends about 400-500 m, upstream.
Blanket thickness 10% of dam height (minimum 10 feet) at dam face to minimum
3 ft at outer end.
Blanket protected from erosion by 2-3 ft thick riprap over gravel bedding.
Areas with natural clay blanket if any are cleared of trees/vegetation, defective
places repaired, and entire surface rolled to seal root holes.
No stripping of area us/ of dam to obtain fine construction material for dam
construction (particularly if no +ve cutoff).
Length of blanket governed by desired reduction in seepage flow.
Blanket may not eliminate piping in naturally stratified soils as high pressures
may exist in one or more strata at d/s toe of the dam.
Tarbella dam has 5700 ft long u/s impervious blanket. Its thickness varies from 42
ft at dam u/s toe to 10 ft at the outer end.










Figure 4.15a: U/s horizontal impermeable barrier.
U/s impermeable
barrier / blanket
Protective gravel/
riprap layer
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-25
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.15b: Mangla dam raising: u/s impervious blanket with top gravel layer for
protection in area of Sukhian dike.

Figure 4.15c: Mangla dam raising: Compaction of impervious blanket by sheep foot rollers
at optimum moisture content.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-26
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

4.9.2.9 Horizontal d/s impervious blanket
Likewise u/s blanket, impermeable horizontal blanket may also be provided at d/s of
dam to lengthen seepage path and reduce seepage (Fig. 4.16). However due to its position at
d/s of dam it is subjected to excessive uplift pressures. Thus the d/s blanket must be designed
to resist uplift pressure. This is done by providing berm of random fill material to add weight
over the impermeable layer. The d/s drainage blanket may be provided above the
impermeable blanket. D/s impervious blanket is not very often used.





4.9.3 Seepage through Foundation
4.9.3.1 Seepage rate
Under seepage through the foundation is determined by Darcys law
Q = K I A I = h/L
I = Average hydraulic gradient over the flow length.
L = length of seepage path = base of impervious bottom or core
h = head difference between reservoir water level and the d/s drain water level.
A = 1 x depth of foundation
K = average permeability for all layers (horizontal K)








The Darcy formula is quite valid when depth of the foundation (d) is small in
comparison to the flow length L. For other conditions a flow net should be drawn to
Random fill to counteract
uplift pressure. Height=H/2
D/s impermeable blanket
Figure 4.16 D/s impervious blanket.
Figure 4.17 Seepage force components. [USBR p-221]
L
d
Seepage exit
area ~ 2-3 d
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-27
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

determine the seepage flow rate. The seepage flow emerges d/s of the dam over a length 2-3 d
depending on the permeability and stratification/ layering of the foundation.
4.9.3.2 Seepage Forces and Piping
The flow of water through pervious foundation produces seepage force due to
friction of percolating water with the walls of the pores.
Seepage force proportional to flow velocity.
Small downward force at entry over large u/s area. This increases submerged
weight of soil.
Under the dam flow velocity increases due to reduced flow area.
At d/s toe of dam, the seepage force is upward reducing effective weight of the
soil.
If upward force exceeds soil weight, the soil would be floated out (boils
formation).
The particle erosion progress backward along the flow line until a continuous pipe
like opening is formed (usually irregular and tortuous) to reservoir.
Piping allows rapid escape of water.
It can lead to dam failure due to foundation heaving.
Excessive seepage results in blow out / heave at d/s of dam.
Piping failure also called as failure by heave or internal/subsurface erosion.
Magnitude and distribution of seepage forces by flow net analysis (this requires
considerable experience to draw flow net).
Grain size and gradation of the foundation materials has an important bearing on
the piping failure.
Piping failure takes places after the dam has been in service for some time.
Piping takes places along minor geological weaknesses.
Piping can be completely and reliably prevented by controlling the under seepage
such as (Sherard P-313):
i. Exist velocities are not high.
ii. Water discharges through adequate thickness of progressively coarser soils
which meets gradation requirements of filter.
Line of creep- shortest path that a particle of water has to travel in seepage under
the dam.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-28
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Creep ratio i.e. the ratio of length of creep to the pressure head loss (CR = L/h),
this is inverse of the average hydraulic gradient.
Weighted creep ratio is for length of line of creep computed as sum of the vertical
components of the shortest seepage path plus one-third of the length of the
horizontal seepage path. This is used for stratified soils.
Criterion for piping potential on the basis of weighted creep ratio as function of
foundation soil type.
Creep ratio. Minimum 3 for gravel/boulder foundation
Minimum 8 for very fine sands
This is to be used as guide to judgment but not as a design criteria.
Valid if no graded filter provided at d/s of dam (graded filter reduces flow length).
The best plan is to provide drainage blanket of graded filter under d/s section of
the dam.
Pressure relief wells placed near d/s toe of dam shall be useful to intercept the
seepage and this reduces uplift pressures.
4.9.3.3 Pressure Relief Wells
Relief wells are to ease out and reduce pressure of the seeping water under the
foundation of an earth dam.
These has disadvantages as:
a. These decrease the length of average seepage path and cause to increase the
quantity of under seepage.
b. These require frequent inspection and maintenance, replacement.
c. The pressure head is lowered to a value nearly equal to the elevation of top (or
discharge level) of the well.
d. Well may discharge into a delivery pipe, a drainage ditch and water is carried
back to river section.
e. Wells to be closely spaced (10 to 25 ft) to minimize pressure build up in
between. Spacing based on judgment.
f. Additional wells be installed in between or in d/s row subsequently, if needed.
g. Wells penetrate more than 50% depth of foundation.
h. Screen is placed in center of hole and outer annular spaced filled with suitable
gravel pack as per filter criteria. Usually a single pack is used and screen
opening is designed to match the selected filter material.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-29
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

i. Wells are developed to improve efficiency.
j. Pressure relief wells are very helpful to relieve seepage pressure when lower
pervious foundation material is overlain by otherwise natural impervious
stratum (no danger of piping, blow out).
k. Depth of wells equal to height of dam (or depth of bed rock) are most
satisfactory.
l. Pressure relief wells lower uplift pressure but enhance seepage flow rate.




















4.9.3.4 Deep toe drain
A toe drain is often provided to collect seepage flow occurring through the drainage
blanket. This is generally a shallow ditch filled with gravel/sand material. The toe drain also
intercepts the seepage flow through the dam foundation. Providing a deeper toe drain can
considerably enhance the interception of foundation seepage. A graded filter zone is provided
Bed rock
Drainage ditch
Pressure relief well
Seepage flow
Figure 4.17 Pressure relief well.
Well details
Well head details
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-30
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

between the foundation and toe drain fill to stop migration of fines from the foundation. The
deep toe drain does not significantly alter the seepage path length and thus seepage rate is not
very much affected.
4.9.4 Sand Gravel Foundation Design
The design criteria require control of seepage flow through the foundation and
abutments (no internal erosion, no sloughing in area where seepage emerges). The pervious
foundation may be either exposed or covered at the surface. The pervious foundation may be
homogeneous or stratified. Stratification influence foundation treatment method.
4.9.4.1 Case I: Exposed Foundation
The sand gravel foundation is open at the surface. The foundation may be shallow,
medium or deep.
A: Shallow Foundation
Provide a positive (complete) cutoff to bedrock.
Grouting of bedrock, if needed.
Horizontal drainage blanket not necessary if shallow pervious foundation can act
as filter and provide adequate drainage.
Provide drainage blanket of filter criteria if:
a. embankment is homogeneous or d/s shell is rockfill
b. perviousness of foundation is questionable.
c. Piping potential exist, either from embankment to foundation or from
foundation to embankment zone (at d/s part).
d. Foundation is stratified.
If rockfill at d/s portion of dam, provide DB from d/s slope to the impervious
zone/core.
It positive cutoff not practical due to lack of materials, short construction season,
wet climate, high dewatering cost, then other methods of cutoff be used.
B: Intermediate Depth Foundation
Positive cutoff may be less economical
Provide other methods of cutoff (sheet pile, slurry trench etc).
Provide minimum impervious zone/core B 1:1 u/s slope and 1:1 d/s slope (core
B is described in a later section).
Provide drainage blanket of filter grade if i) overlying zone is impervious or ii)
overlying zone is rockfill, iii) piping potential is present
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-31
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Provide key trench
C: Deep Depth Foundation
Foundation too deep for a positive cutoff
Provide u/s impermeable blanket in continuation of impermeable core.
Minimum core B
Provide key trench
At d/s of embankment, provide adequate thickness of previous or impervious
(random fill) materials (berm) (Fig. 4.16) to improve stability against high uplift
pressures.
Provide filter grade drainage blanket for d/s rock or imp fill against piping hazard.
Provide toe drains
For foundations of high K, which cause extensive seepage, ponding and sand
boils, then provide drainage trenches, pressure relief wells, extension of d/s toe of
dam or blanket on d/s area.
For deep stratified layers, provide partial cutoff and u/s blanket.
Some seepage inadvertent.
4.9.4.2 Case-II: Covered Pervious Foundation
The gravel/sand foundation is covered by some impervious layer. There are three (3)
conditions:
A: Top impervious layer thickness 3 ft or less
Layer usually ineffective as an impervious blanket. Design the foundation as
exposed foundation.
Excavate/remove the foundation material to bottom bed rock layer.
B: Thickness of top impervious layer more than 3 ft, but less than dam height h.
Provide drainage trenches (of depth as much as to top of lower pervious layer) at
d/s of dam or pressure relief wells to relieve uplift pressure.
May act as u/s impervious blanket depending on thickness, continuity,
imperviousness, u/s distance to natural loose deposits
Need to compact with heavy roller.
Horizontal drainage blanket also provided if embankment is homogeneous, or
permeability of d/s zone questionable of length reaching to base of imp zone
(Z+5) if d/s slope of core greater that 1
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-32
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

C: Thickness of impervious layer greater than dam reservoir head.
No major problems for seepage or seepage forces. No treatment is needed for
seepage control.
4.10 FINE GRAINED (SILT, CLAY) FOUNDATIONS [USBR p-246]
4.10.1 Characteristics
Foundation of fine grained soil (silt, clay) are sufficient impermeable and thus no
danger of under seepage and piping
Main problem is stability against consolidation and shear failure due to low
bearing/shear strength
Characteristics depend on location of water table, and compactness of soil
State of compactness determined by standard penetration test (soil below water
table) and by density-in-place test (for dry soils above water table)
Weak soils need to be treated for improving strength (by improving density)
4.10.1.1 Saturated soils
Determine nature of consolidation as normally consolidated or over consolidated
by analyzing the weight to which the soils had been exposed in geologic past.
Saturated impervious sands (dirty sands - sands having good amounts of fines)
also act as fine grained soils
Ability to resist shear stress (due to embankment weight) may be determined from
soil group.
Relative density for cohesionless soils D
r
= (e
max
-e)/(e
max
-e
min
For cohesive soils relative consistency C
) is related to
strength.
r
[C
r
= (LL-W)/(LL-PL)] = (e
LL
-
e
w
)/(e
LL
-e
PL
At C
) is also related to strength LL = liquid limit, PL = plastic limit, W =
water content.
r
= 0 (W = LL), cohesive strength of all remolded soils C
LL
0.2 lb/sq in and
shear strength S
LL
= 0.2 + tan
s
. The
s
At W = PL, cohesive strength varies considerably; is obtained from triaxial test
on samples compacted at proctor maximum dry density.
is obtained by slow shear test on
saturated soil (drainage permitted, pore water pressure zero) tan about 0.5
Treatments:
The shear strength can be increased on
i. Remove the soil of low shear strength.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-33
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

ii. Provide drainage of foundation to permit settlement on drainage and increase
of strength during construction.
iii. To reduce the magnitude of the average shear stress along the potential surface
of sliding by flattening the slopes of the embankment.
a. Removal of soft foundation is practicable and thin layers of soft soil
over lying firm layers are excavated.
b. Vertical drains may be provided to facilitate consolidation. This is
practical for low embankments only e.g. under highway (non-hydraulic
structures) not practical for dams.
c. Flattening of slopes lengthen the surface of sliding, decreases average
shear stress along the path and increase factor of safety against sliding
(Fig. 4.18).






4.10.1.2Relatively Dry Foundations
These soils exhibit large strength at its present dryness
The relative density of the material indicates the potential/danger of soil on
compression
Many soils will undergo quick and sudden volume reduction on wetting/saturating
on reservoir filling (Fig. 4.18).
Dense soils which will undergo small compaction on loading and wetting may be
used as foundation for dams.
Pre-wetting of soil before loading improves its strength on loading.
Large compaction and could cause serious rupture/weak section for dam cone
materials and consequent dam failure
Drainage must be assured by an underlying pervious layer or by a vertical
drainage.


h/2
h
Figure 4.18: Increasing base contact area for stability against shear, sliding.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-34
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams









4.10.2 Treatment/Improvements of Fine Grained Foundation
Foundation of dams can be improved by: 1) Pre-consolidation, 2) Densification of
cohesionless soils, and 3) Dynamic compaction
Pre-consolidation
Useful in compressible soils
Done by applying artificial surcharge such a soil removed from stripping and
scaling of abutments may be piled up
Allow time for water to drain
For rapid rate (1-2 months for 50% consolidation) piling of random weight is
useful.
For slow rate soils, dam weight is used to consolidate the soil. This requires slow
construction rate and providing drainage. Longer time periods (1-2 years for 50%
consolidation) are necessary.
Densification of Cohesionless Soils
This is carried out using shock and vibration. Vibrofloatation is used to improve poor
foundation. This can reduce settlement as much as 50% with substantially increased shearing
strength. Vibrations convert loosely packed soils into a denser soil.
Vibroflat can be used to penetrate the soil and operate below the water table. Best
results are obtained in coarse sands which can contain little or no silt or clay.
Dynamic Compaction
This is repeated application of very high intensity impacts to the surface. This
improves the soil mechanical properties. Compaction is done by dropping a weight, typically
10-20 tones from heights of 10-20 meters at regular interval across the surface. Several
tamping/passes may be made at the site. Each imprint is backfilled after tamping. In finer
soils increased pore water pressure must be allowed to dissipate between passes, which may
take several weeks.
Stress
S
t
r
a
i
n


Unconsolidated dry sample
Unconsolidated wet sample
Preconsolidated dry sample
Preconsolidated wet sample
Figure 4.19: Consolidation of wet/dry soils.
Sudden consolidation
of dry soil on wetting
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-35
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

4.10.3 Fine Grained Foundation Design
Saturated Foundation
Recommendation according to soil group on USBR P-251
Add stabilizing fill (u/s + d/s) to embankment designed for a stable foundation
(Fig. 4.18).
Slopes according to strength of foundation material as determined by penetration
test, consistency and dam height.
Suitable for small dams only





Dry Foundation
Design depend on potential to volume change on wetting
If potential less, design as for saturated soil
Else pre-densify the soil before construction and later design as for saturated
dense soils.
4.11 EMBANKMENT SECTION DESIGN
This defines the crest design, u/s and d/s slopes of impermeable core, the shoulder fill,
the slope protection, etc.
4.11.1 Crest Design
Crest width W
The width W of the crest is governed by height of dam, importance of structure,
width of highway, construction procedure, access required either during
construction or as a permanent feature.
Japanese code W (m) = 3.6 H
1/3
Special widening may be necessary to provide a
highway or safeguard against freak waves etc. This
widening could be done by steepening face slope in
3. (Thomas p-384). These are seismic active
areas)
the upper reaches of dam.
Top crest width should not be less than 30.
Figure 4.19b
h/2
h
3:1 or flatter
Random fill
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-36
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

The top width (m) is taken as
W = h/5 + 3 low dams (Punmia P. 365)
W = 0.55 h + 0.2 h h< 30 m
W = 1.65 (h+1.5)
1/3
Crest width of dams in Pakistan are: Hub dam = 28 ft, Mangla dam = 40 ft, Khanpur
dam= 35 ft, Tarbella dam = 40 ft, Simly dam = 35 ft, Bolan dam = 40 ft.
h>30 m (USBR 2001)
For ease of construction with power equipment, the crest width should not be less
than 12 ft. Roadway across the dam set the width.
Sherard p-413: For earthquake area, top of dam is subjected to worst damage and can
vibrate with greater amplitude than the base. Thus it is advisable to make dam top thicker by
increasing crest width or using flatter slopes near top. Also that if any crack develops, the
longer seepage path causes less seepage and increases dam safety.
Surface Drainage
Surface drainage of crust be provided by a crown of at least 3, or by sloping towards
the upstream floor. For wider crest 2% slope is adequate.
Surfacing
Crest surface should be protected against damage from wave splash, rainfall, wind,
frost and traffic wear. A layer of fine rock or gravely material of 4 inches minimum thickness
be provided. If a highway is carried across the dam, then crest width and surfacing must
conform to highway codes.
Safety Requirements
Crest should be made safe by providing metallic or concrete guard rails on both
shoulders of the crest. For minor dam, pillars at 25ft spacing or large boulders placed at
intervals along the crest may be provided. Guard rails be at least 2
1/2
Camber
ft from crest edge and be
well supported.
The crest elevation is increased towards center of the dam by an amount equal to
future consolidation of dam foundation and embankment after completion of the construction.
Selection of amount of camber is somewhat arbitrary. It is provided to ensure that some
residual camber will remain after settlement and consolidation. This improves the appearance
of the dam. The camber is provided by increasing the u/s and d/s slopes near the crest of the
dam. The camber is not accounted in stability calculations. For non-compressible
foundations, camber of about 1% of dam height is provided. Several feet (often 8 to 10 ft) of
camber may be needed for dams constructed on foundations expected to settle.

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-37
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams











4.11.2 Embankment Slopes
Embankment slopes are designed to ensure strength, stability and economy of
construction: Flat slopes, more cost, more stability/strength; Steeper, lower costs, stability or
strength. Embankments are constructed from infinite conditions of soil materials with varying
size, gradation, stress-strain relationship, and shear strength (USBR 2001, p-254).
The procedure for designing a cross-section of earthfill dam consists largely of
designing to the slopes and characteristics of existing successful dams, making analytical and
experimental studies of unusual conditions and controlling closely selection and placement of
embankment materials. Except small variation in specific design, radical innovation are
avoided. Any fundamental changes in design concepts are adopted gradually as more
practical experience is gathered. This practice is being overly cautious, but probable extent of
loss of property and life in the event of failure of a constructed dam provide ample
justification for these conservative procedures. Whereas design of large dam can be made
increasingly secure by laboratory test of materials, the design of small dams is heavily
followed on the basis of successful structures and past experiences.
Embankment slopes may be continuous or discontinuous. Embankment may have a
single slope over whole height, or multiple slopes may be provided over different sections of
the depth. The slope discontinuity or change in slope may be with or without a berm.
The u/s and d/s slopes of the embankment and core are selected from general
guidelines, experiences in the light of foundation materials and materials available for
construction. The seepage analysis and stability of the selected dam section is carried out and
dam section may be acceptable if factor of safety for the dam under different construction and
operation conditions are found satisfactory. Alternate dam sections are evaluated for material
needs/crest and factor of safety and that dam section is adopted which provide higher factor
of safety at lowest costs. Stability of the shape is analyzed under static loads as well as under
seismic conditions.
Dam crest design level
Construction level
Camber ~ 4

Camber
Figure 4.20 Camber for the dam crest.
W
ELEVATION
X-SECTION
1.75:1
2:1
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-38
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Except where there is surplus of material available from required excavations, the
most economical dam is obtained with the minimum volume and therefore most steep slopes
consistent with the dam stability (Sherard p-48). The allowable steepness depends on the
internal zoning and on strength of foundations and the embankment material. Crest length
and pace of construction may also affect the slope selection. Use of excavated material as
random fill may allow flatter slopes. The random fill material may be placed (Fig. 4.21) at
bottom of u/s face to eliminate slope protection, at d/s face as toe support to improve
stability; it may be buried inside the supporting shells, or if it contains coarse materials it may
be used as filter zones to the core. If random fill is impermeable but with poor stability, it
may be buried inside the impervious core. (Also see USBR p-260 fig. 149)
The strength of foundation is also affects the dam face slopes: Weak foundation
average slope 2:1 to 4:1; Strong foundation steeper slope 1.5:1 to 3:1. The height of dam
also affect slope selection. For homogeneous materials dams of fine core: Short height
steeper slope, Higher dams flatter slope. The internal zoning permit steeper slopes. For thin
clay core slopes are independent of height. For rockfill dam with thin u/s core, the d/s slope is
equal to natural angle of repose of rockfill material (1.7:1 rounded stream gravel, 1.2:1
angular quarried rock, 1:1 thin layers of well compacted quarried rock. Central core d/s 1.6
1.8. The slopes may be single or multiple slope. Slopes may be continuous or discontinuous
with or without intervening berm.
Slopes are set as following:
Dams located in narrow rock-walled canyons can be constructed with some what
steeper slopes than otherwise, because of added stability given by the confining
walls. In narrow valleys broad toe berm or very flat slopes at the toe of dam can
be provided relatively cheaply due to the small quantities of embankment material
required.
U/s slope may vary from 2:1 to as flat as 4:1 for stability, usually it is 2:1 or 3:1.
For eliminating slope protection in lower levels (below dead storage) slope may
be made flatter
Berm to act as base for top slope protection
Figure 4.21 Placement of random fill.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-39
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Steeper slopes may be allowed above normal conservation level
Random fill in lower part to flatten slope
D/s slope: 2:1 for dams with d/s pervious zone and 2
1/2
The slope of vertical core as: u/s face 1.5H:1V to 0.6H:1V; d/s face: 1:1 to
0.5H:1V; Inclined core: u/s face 1:1, d/s face 0.3:1 (reverse slope)
:1 for homogeneous dams.
This provides stability for most soils when drainage is provided to eliminate
saturation of d/s slope.
The slope depends on materials available, foundation condition, dam height, and
varies widely as: u/s from 2H:1V to 4H;1V. Coarser free draining materials allow
steeper slopes, and finer materials require flatter slope. In general slopes may be
as (Pumnia p-366):
Material u/s d/s
Homogeneous well graded 2.5:1 2:1
Coarse silt 3:1 2.5:1
Silty clay h < 15 m 2.5:1 2:1
h > 15 m 3:1 2.5:1
Sand and gravel with clay core 3:1 2.5:1
Concrete core 2.5:1 2:1
The slope of the dam also depends on the type of the dam and on the nature of
materials for construction.
Diaphragm Type
If shoulder material SW- GW or GW. (# 200 < 5%) slopes as for rockfill dam (1.3 to
1.7 Horizontal to 1 Vertical)
Homogeneous
Materials No rapid draw down Rapid drawdown
u/s d/s u/s d/s
GW GP SW SP Materials not suitable -too pervious
GC GM SC SM 2:1 2:1 3:1 2:1
CL ML 3:1 2:1 3:1 2:1
CH MH 3/6:1 2:1 4:1 2:1
Zoned embankment
Impervious core flanked by relatively pervious material.
Filter transition provided on both sides of the impervious zone to prevent piping
and internal erosion.
Transition materials partially fill cracks/holes in imp core.
Transition of rock fines or sand gravel.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-40
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Few feet required but constructed as 8-12 ft to accommodate construction
materials/machinery
Thick transition-design as filter
Thick transition-less requirements










Impervious Core
Pervious or impervious foundation with positive cut off - provide minimum core A
(top width 10, base = h, symmetric)
Exposed pervious foundations or covered pervious foundation (cover < 3 ft). No
positive cutoff-minimum core B (Top width 10, U/S 1:1, D/S 1:1)
Maximum core (Top width 10, U/S slope = (x-1/2) : 1, D/S slope = (y ) : 1;
where x:1 is slope of u/s face, y :1 is slope of d/s face)
For core greater than maximum core, outer shells become ineffective in stabilizing the
dam and embankment may be considered as homogenous for stability analysis.
Core smaller than minimum core dam as diaphragm type.
Impervious cover over foundation more than 3- select between core A and core B
depending on extent and effectiveness of the core.
Top of the core kept 3-5 ft below crest to safeguard against weathering.
Thickness of impervious cover over foundation more than dam height (d > h): For
saturated fine grained foundation use Core A + u/s and d/s random stabilizing fill
(Fig. 4.18). The slope of stabilizing fill depends on dam height (min 3:1) and
consistency and nature/group of foundation soil (4:1 for SM to 10:1 for CH). Further
details in USBR 2001 p=251, Table 16).
For core A stability not affected by core material (due to smaller thickness).
Minimum Core A: for dams on impervious foundation or shallow pervious foundation with
positive cutoff trench.
Minimum Core B: for dams on deep pervious foundations without positive cutoff.
Maximum Core:
Figure 4.21 Size range of impervious core for zoned embankment. (USBR p-266).
Slope = y:1
Slope = y-:1
Slope = 1:1
Slope = :1
1:1
x-:1
x:1
Z
Z
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-41
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Outside shell slopes governed by stability of fill material
Rocks, GW, GP, suitable for shell
Gravely SW and SP also suitable for shell
Embankment slopes may be selected according to materials as below.
USBR p-251 Table 16 defines slopes of stabilizing fill, min 3:1 and max 10:1.

Table 4.2: Recommended slopes for small zoned earthfill dams on stable foundations (USBR
p-267)
Type Shell material Core material No rapid
drawdown
Rapid
drawdown
U/s D/s U/s D/s
Min core A Rock, GW,
GP, SW, SP,
gravely
GC, GM, SC, SM,
CL, ML, CH, MH
2:1 2:1
Max core Rock, GW,
GP, SW, SP
gravely
GC, GM 2:1 2:1 2:1 2:1
SC, SM 2:1 2:1 2:1 2:1
CL, ML 2:1 2:1 3:1 2:1
CH, MH 3:1 3:1 3:1 3:1

Cross section of some dams in Pakistan are shown in chapter-1.
Tarbela Dam, Pakistan.
Rocks under alluvium and abutments.
Abutments: Metamorphosed sedimentary rocks (sugary limestone, phylite, quartzite, schist)
Alluvium: Boulders/cobbles and gravel choked with sand, depth as much as 600 ft.
4.11.3 Slope Protection
Dam slopes are needed to be protected against action of various destructive forces.
U/S Slopes: Protection is required against destructive waves splashing onto the side slope.
Waves generated due to high sustained winds as well as from earthquake action. Also needed
to be protected against burrowing animals.
D/S Slope: These need to be protected against erosion by wind
and rainfall runoff and the borrowing animals. This also needs to
be protected against possibility of seeping of rain water and
forming internal erosion (piping and sloughing of inside of
embankment).
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-42
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

I: UPSTREAM SLOPE
U/s slopes are provided protection by: rock riprap, concrete pavement, steel facing,
bituminous concrete pavement, pre cast concrete blocks, others as short cement pavement,
wood, sacked concrete. Special care is needed against beaching process if water level stays at
one elevation for long times.
Rock Riprap
This refers to placing of fairly large size rock pieces over the slope face. The rock
may be dumped or hand placed. The riprap is placed over a properly graded filter, which may
be a specially placed blanket or may be outer pervious zone of a zoned dam.
Dumped Riprap
The rock fragments/stones are dumped over the slope. The efficiency of dumped rock
riprap depends on following: Quality of the rock, Weight or size of individual stone pieces,
Thickness of the riprap, Shape of stones or rock fragments (rounded, angular), Slope of the
embankment, Stability and effectiveness of the filter.
Rock for riprap should be hard, dense and durable, resist long exposure to weathering.
Igneous, metamorphic rocks, limestone, hard sandstones make excellent riprap. Visual
inspection and lab tests, petrographic tests assure quality. Rocks should be free of seams of
shale (low quality rocks).
Individual pieces should be of sufficient weight to resist displacement by waves (must
for all size dams). The thickness of riprap should be sufficient to accommodate weight and
size of stones necessary to resist wave action (Fig. 4.22). A 3 minimum thickness is used.
Smaller thickness if wave action is less severe. Lesser thickness may be used for upper slopes
corresponding to flood control storage (above normal conservation level) due to infrequent
exposure of this part to waves. If there is any damage to this section, it can be repaired on
reservoir lowering.







Slope protection Min 3 ft
Shell material
(min 4-6 ft to
enable placing)
Filter or bedding layer 1 ft
min (washed gravel fill)
Figure 4.22a: U/s Slope protection.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-43
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams



Figure 4.22b: Dumped rock riprap. (L: placement in progress and R: completed)

Figure 4.22c: Hand placed rock riprap. (USBR p-279)
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-44
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.22d: Mangla dam raising: Protection of d/s slope by hand/machine placed rounded
river-run cobbles. (looking downward)

Figure 4.22e: Mangla dam raising: U/s slope protection by angular rock riprap over filter.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-45
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.22f: Simly dam: u/s slope protection by angular rock riprap.


Figure 4.22g: Tanpura-I dam: u/s slope protection by rounded rock riprap.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-46
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.22h: Mangla dam: u/s face protection by angular rock riprap.

Riprap weight
(Zipparro eds. Davis Handbook of Applied Hydraulics, p-13.58) defined the riprap
weight as:
( ) ( )
b
a
Cot G K
H
W

3
50
1
=
W
max
= 4 W
50
and W
min
= W
50
W
/8
50
H = Wave height (ft)
= Average stone weight (lbs)
= Stone unit weight (lbs/cft) (bulk unit weight after placement) ~ 156 lb/cft
G = Sp. Gravity of stones material (2.3 2.7)
= angle (degrees) of slope surface with horizontal
K = stability coefficient (K 4.37)
a, b = empirical coefficient (In general coefficient are as: a = 3, b 1)
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-47
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Novak et al (p-54) defined size of rock armoring necessary for stability under wave action is
as: M = 10
3
x H
s
3
where M=mass of stone required (kg), and H
s
The size of riprap is estimated as: D = [7 W / 5 ]
=significant wave height
(m).
1/3
where D = stone size (ft), W = stone
weight, = bulk un i t weight (lbs/cft). The th i ckness must be more than size of
heaviest/largest stones. In no case it should be smaller than 1.5 x D
50
USBR p-277 provided gradation (by weight in lbs) of riprap for slope = 3:1 and angular rocks
as:
or 24
Fetch thickness Max D
50-60
D
40-50
D
< 2.5 miles 30 2500 lbs 1250 75-1250 75
0-10

> 2.5 ml 36 4500 2250 1000-2250 100
Sand and rock dust < 5% by weight
Rounded size d
0-10
Rounded rocks require a thicker layer, or slope should be made flatter
is meant to fill the voids in larger rocks.
For 2:1 slope, 36 minimum thickness be used.
Shape of Rock
Shape of rock fragments influences the ability of riprap to resist displacement by
wave action. Angular fragments tend to interlock better than boulders and rounded cobbles.
Thus rounded stones should have more thickness.
Graded Filter
A layer or blanket of graded filter should be provided underneath the riprap if there is
danger of fines from underneath layer to more into the riprap layer by wave action. For a
zoned dam filter not needed if outer shall is gravel. Blanket of crushed rock or natural gravels
3/16 to 3
1/2
Flexibility
with thickness equal to half of riprap thickness (but not less than 12) is
satisfactory. Follow filter criteria discussed earlier.
Dumped filter should have flexibility to adjust base surface an account of settlement
of dam body or local settlement.
Placement
The riprap is dumped from hauling trucks onto the prepared surface. Bulldozers are
used to level off-and compact the dumped layer to fill up the voids between larger stones.
Smaller stones fit in voids of larger pieces very well. The rock stones must not break during
handling / placement / compaction. Top surface is uneven, rough and decreases wave riprap.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-48
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Riprap materials had been hauled from long distances (200+ miles) due to its satisfactory and
proven performance and economy.
Hand Packed rock Riprap
This consists of suitably sized stones carefully laid by hand in a more or less definite
pattern with minimum amount of voids and with top surface relatively smooth. Doubled or
irregular shapes lay up less satisfactorily than stones of roughly square shape. Stones of flat
stratified nature should be placed with principal bedding plane normal to slope. Joints should
be broken as much as possible and voids be avoided carefully by arranging various sizes of
stones and small rock fragments.
The stones of excellent quality should be used. Thickness can be half of dumped
riprap but not less than 12. Filter blanket be provided underneath the riprap, if required. Due
to tight packing, hand placed riprap is not as flexible, so it cannot adjust to foundation or
local settlement. Thus hand placed riprap should not be used where considerable settlement is
expected. Hand placed riprap could be costly due to extensive labor cost in spite of its smaller
thickness.

Concrete Paving
Concrete is placed over the sloping surface to resist wave destruction. It can be used
both for rockfill and earthfill dams. Paving thickness depend on dam height, slope steepness.
Thickness is 8 for h 50 for and 12-18 for high dams. Paving is placed in blocks 6 x 6 or
more but monolithic construction gives the best service. A water tight surface will eliminate
hydrostatic pressure underneath the pavement. Blocks could be displaced or broken by wave
action and uplift forces under the slab. Concrete can crack requiring frequent maintenance.
For blocks, expansion joints and construction joints should be widely spaced.
Reinforcement is (5% area) in both directions and be continuous through the construction
joints. Joints be sealed with plastic fillers and cracks be grouted and sealed properly.
Pavement should extend from crest to below the minimum water levels. It should terminate at
a berm and against a deep seated curb or header (minimum 18 deep).
The success of concrete pavement is mixed, but successes and problems have been
observed. Paving is a costly alternate, but may be adopted if enough riprap material is not
available. Concrete pavement may or may not be held in place firmly by foundation bolts
embedded deep inside sloping shell. Concrete paving increase the wave runup and suitable
wave breakers, wave deflectors, may be provided to reduced risk of dam overtopping. Failure
chance is 30% + due to inherent deficiencies in this type of construction.
Soil Cement
Soil cement is produced by mixing cement with coarse sandy or gravely soil with 10-
25% material passing # 200 sieve are ideal (Maximum allowed < 50% of # 200). The cement
is 0.7-1.0 barrel of cement per cubic yard of compacted soil cement. 2-4% extra cement may
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-49
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

be added for erosion resistance. For most soils 10-12% cement (% of compacted volume) is
considered typical. Cement and moisture ratio is determined by lab tests.
Soil cement is placed in 6-8 horizontal layers over the slope (horizontal width as 8 ft
normal thickness 2-3 ft) and roller compacted in a stair-step horizontal layers. Soil cements
have 500-1000 lb/inch compressive strength at 7-day (10% cement). The edges of the cement
layers are not trimmed to retard wave runup. A reasonably firm foundation is required so that
deformation following placement of soil-cement is not significant. Normal embankment
construction procedures are satisfactory.











Figure 4.23b: Soil cement paving.

II. DOWNSTREAM SLOPE
8-10 ft
2-3.5 ft
Concrete paving with coping wall
Concrete paving with
wave breakers Soil cement
Figure 4.23a: Paving with soil cement or concrete.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-50
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

The zoned dams with d/s shell of rock or cobble fill do not need additional slope
protection. Slope protection is required for all conditions against erosion by wind and rainfall.
If not protected gully can develop.
This protection is provided by
placing a layer of rock, cobbles, or
sod (grass). However, vegetation
protection can be poor and
ineffective at places, especially in
arid regions. Thus cobbles/rock protection is preferred. The stone is 24 thickness (minimum
12) over a filter bed should be provided. Minimum single layer hand placed cobbles / stones.
Berm or a cut slope may be provided at intervals and graded contour drainage channels
provided to collect and dispose the rain runoff from upper portions of dam slope. Drainage
channels discharge into cement lined channels running down the slope and ultimately to safe
disposal point/river bed. A contour drain is also provided along toe of dam. Surface drainage
is also provided (as an open gutter) for abutments and valley floor.
4.11.4 Abutments
FLARED ABUTMENT SLOPES
The u/s and d/s slopes of embankment are often flared at abutments to provide flatter
slopes for stability and seepage control. The u/s flaring is equivalent to providing u/s
impermeable blanket. The flaring design is governed by topography of the site, the length of
constant desired, for aesthetic value, and ease of construction. For steep side slopes this may
be useful to locate access road across the dam.
ABUTMENT SIDE SLOPES
The side slope of impervious abutment are usually discontinuous. The sides are
dressed with slope not exceeding 1H:2V to provide a stable contact between the embankment
and abutments. The bottom should be continuous without abrupt level changes. Any hang
over should be removed to have good contact.









Remove overhangs
Trim slopes to max 0.5V:1H
Figure 4.24 Abutment shaping.
Cut slope
Berm
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-51
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

4.12 ENGINEERING CHARACTERISTICS OF SOILS [Novak et al. 1998, p-36-45]
Soil load pore water pressure response
Soils undergo deformation as a result of changes in loading or drainage conditions
due to alterations in the geometric configuration of the soil particle assembly. The volume
changes and settlement due to external loading takes place slowly through the complex
process of consolidation. Relationships in the form of pore-pressure coefficients are used to
describe immediate response of pore water pressure to applied total stress.
Shear strength
The shear strength of a soil is defined as the maximum resistance to shearing stress
which can be mobilized; when this is exceeded failure occurs usually along identifiable slip
surfaces. The shear strength of any material is described by Mohr-Coulomb failure criterion
based on total stress as: S = c + tan or based on effective stress as: S = c + tan =
total compressive stress ( = + u), = effective stress, u = pore water pressure.
Laboratory shear tests, e.g. triaxial shear test, are run for the material compacted to the design
density / moisture content and construction of Mohr circle plot. Coarse soils such as sands
derive their shear strength largely from particle interlock and internal friction, and are called
as cohesionless (c=0) or frictional soils; the shear strength is mostly controlled largely soil
density.y . Most clays soils derive shear strength from both cohesion and internal friction.
Following tests are usually carried out. (Sherard p-332)
1. Undrained test: (unconsolidated undrained test). No drainage and dissipation of
pore water pressure. Called as Q-test (quick test). Used for stability analysis for
dam during and after construction.
2. Consolidated-undrained test. (sample first consolidated with full pore water
pressure dissipation under given consolidation pressure) and then is failed in shear
with no drainage allowed. This is called R test.
3. Drained test consolidated. Drainage and complete dissipation of pore pressure
allowed at all stages (slow test) For parameters in terms of effective stress (c and
). Called as S test (slow test)
Compressibility and consolidation
When load is applied to a soil, mass volume decreases and settlement may occur due
to (a) elastic deformation of soil particles, (b) compression of the pore fluid, (c) explusion of
pore fluid from the stressed zone with rearrangement of soil particles, with expulsion of pore
water being dominant. The consolidation of clays is very slow due to their very low
permeability. Vertical consolidation characteristics are determined in lab in oedometer tests
and expressed by:
Coefficient of volume compressibility to determine the magnitude of time dependent
consolidation settlement: m
v
=
v
/
v
Coefficient of consolidation to establish rates of settlement: c

v
= k/m
v

w
(k=permeability)
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-52
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Coefficient of secondary consolidation to describe subsequent continuing settlement due to
creep of the soil structure under constant effective stress.
Compaction
Compaction is the process of densification by expulsion of the air from the soil void spaces,
and result in closer particle packing, improved strength and reduced settlement. Rollers
assisted by vibratory excitation are used for field compaction of embankments. The degree of
compaction is measured in terms of dry density
d
Representative engineering properties for soils:
= /(1+w) where = bulk in-situ density,
w is moisture content. Compaction of soil modifies the major engineering characteristics as
shear strength, compressibility, volume change due to change in moisture content, and
permeability.
Description Saturated
unit
weight
(kN/m
3
Shear strength (effective
strength basis)
)
Coefficient of
compressibility
,
mv
(x10

-4
m
2
Coefficient
of horizontal
permeability
k
/kN)
h
(m/s)
Cohesion
c (kN/m
2
Friction,
(degrees) )
Gravels 17-22 0 30-45 0.1 1.0 10
-1
10
-2

Sand 0 30-45
10
-2
10
-5

Silts < 5 20-35
10
-4
10
-6

Clay (soft-
medium)
15-21 0 20-30 1.0 10.0
Intact clays,
< 10
-8
, if
weathered,
fissured, or
with silt
lenses 10
-3

10
-8

Clays (sensitive,
silty)
< 10 < 30
Clays (medium-
stiff)
< 50 < 20

4.12 SEEPAGE ANALYSIS
Seepage flow will occur through all types of formation irrespective how small the
permeability may be. Seepage occur both through the dam embankment as well as dam
foundation. Seepage flow is given by Darcys law q = K I per unit flow cross section and as
Q = q A = K I A = K hA/L through section of area A.
Flow net method is used for simple flow conditions. Seepage occurs as confined flow
through the foundation and as unconfined flow through the embankment. A flow net is
drawn with curvilinear squares; different squares may have different area but all have flow
lines and potential lines cross at right angle and that all four sides are of equal curved length
(Fig. 4.25). The flow is given as
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-53
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Q = K H N
f
/ N
K = Permeability (m/s)
d

H = Head difference across two ends
N
f
N
= No. of flow lines
d
Flow net are drawn on a to-scale map of the dam + foundation cross section. Usually the
permeability in horizontal orientation is higher than permeability in vertical orientation (an-
isotropic case). Experience, skill and practice is required to draw flow net. See figures on
next page.
= No. of potential drops
Flow net provide
1. Seepage flow rate through the section
2. Distribution of water potential (h) and pore water pressure u (u = h z ; z =
elevation and Note: u, h, z has units of length and are taken from a pre-selected
datum). Also u = P/g = P/, P = water pressure, = water density, = sp weight.
The water potential h and pore water pressure is given in units of pressure head;
this should be multiplied with unit weight of water ( = 62.4 lbs/cft, 1000 kg mass
/m
3

) to convert it to pressure units. Pore water pressure distribution is needed for
stability analysis.














No. of flow tubes = N
f
= 4.3
Seepage
exit face
h/3
h
Equi-potential drops: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 12 14 16
Figure 4.25 Seepage flow through the dam embankment by flow net method.
Seepage
exit face
h/3
h
Equi-potential drops: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 12
Figure 4.26 Drawing equi-potential lines through the dam embankment.
h
h=h/m
B
H C
0.3 L
L
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-54
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams















Procedure to draw flow net
1. Draw a to-scale map of dam and foundation
2. Determine the seepage exit area
3. The u/s face of the embankment is plane where seepage originates.
4. The d/s exit area is usually up to a height h/3 for a homogeneous dam (h = dam
height). For a modified homogeneous dam, the flow will converge towards the toe
drain or the horizontal blanket drain. Flow emerges tangentially to the exit face for
d/s face or chimney drain or vertical line for rockfill toe or drainage blanket (Fig.
4.27).
5. The seepage line is part of parabola and exits tangent to the d/s surface.
6. Establish the seepage line/phreatic surface. The seepage line intersects the
reservoir water surface at a distance 0.3 L from the point C (point C is at water
surface at u/s face) where L is the horizontal projection of the u/s face (Fig. 4.26).
The actual phreatic line is modified to meet at point C.
7. Determine the head difference h between u/s and d/s exit area h = h
u/s
h
8. Select number of potential drops m over h. Determine head drop across one
potential drop h = h/m. Divide the seepage line into selected equal h intervals.
Thus total number of potential drops N
d/s

d
= h/h.
a) Seepage exit at d/s
face of dam.
b: Seepage exit into vertical
face chimney drain
c) Seepage exit into
rockfill toe
d) Seepage exit into
drainage blanket
Figure 4.27 Phreatic line for various seepage exit conditions.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-55
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

9. Draw equipotential lines from these points such that they intersect to the seepage
line and lower confining layers at right angle. Towards the u/s face these
equipotential lines will take parallelism to the slope of the u/s face.
10. Draw a flow line in the middle part of the flow area keeping it normal to potential
lines but approximately curvilinear and parallel to seepage line such that
approximate squares are formed. Extend this flow to the originating surface (i.e.
u/s face) and to the exit surface (i.e. d/s face or toe/blanket drain). Draw more
flow lines to the bottom confining layer.
11. The effect of confining surface on the shape of flow lines and equipotential lines
diminishes farther from the confining surface.
12. The flow net is formed of curvilinear squares (equal sides, right angle). Few non-
squares will not affect seepage flow rate but may affect internal head distribution.
13. Flow net become more complex if more than one material or anisotropic materials
are present.
14. For large differences in K of the two materials of embankment and foundation the
flow lines can cross from foundation into upper embankment or from
embankment into bottom foundation (the material of higher K will attract flow
lines from other material). For small differences in K the flow lines originating
from any material will continue within the same material and will not cross into
the other material.
15. Flow lines are attracted by chimney drain, drainage blanket and toe drain.









Phreatic Line in earth dams with drainage blanket: Graphical Method (Fig. 4.28)
L = Horizontal projection B-D of the upstream face length A-D
Mark point C as CD = 0.3 L
Taking C as center draw circle of radius CF to point E.
A
B
C
0.3 L
L
F G H
Q
x
R = x+S
R
P(x,y)
D
E
Figure 4.28 Phreatic surface D-P-G for dam with drainage blanket.
y
S
h
T
Directrix
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-56
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Draw vertical tangent from E to H (E-H line is directrix )
G point midway between F and H. This is extremity of seepage line D-P-G
Draw vertical line at Q (F-Q = x)
With F as center, Q-H as radius R, cut PQ vertical at P. The distance P-Q = y.
(x,y) are the coordinates of the seepage line parabola. Draw other points similar to
P. The seepage line meets at C.
U/S end part of the seepage line is redrawn to meet the water surface at D at right
angle.
Seepage rate
I = dy/dx, A = y x 1, Q = K I A = KS, where S = Focal distance = FH. Also
( ) T h T K Q + =
2 2





















Figure 4.29 Seepage flow net for dam foundation with partial cutoff.
Figure 4.30 Equipotential contours and flow lines for seepage through dam foundation with sheet pile.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-57
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Seepage Through Dam Foundation
Seepage through the dam foundation is also determined by drawing flow net for the
foundation section. The flow net is drawn by procedure similar to for the embankment. The
seepage control measures are also considered while drawing the flow net and determining the
seepage rates.
Example: {Lambe and Whitman 1969, p-273. K = 5 x 10
-4
Top width = 14 ft, u/s and d/s slope = 1.5:1, toe drain = 30 ft, total base = 140 ft, height = 42
ft, free board = 2 ft.
ft/sec, Fig. 4.31.
N
f
= 2.8, N
d
= 9, = 42 2 = 40 ft, h = 40/9 = 4.444 ft, saturated flux = 5 x 10
-4
x 2.8/9 x 40
= 6.22 x 10
-3
ft
3
/s/ft, unsaturated flux = 0.58 x 10
-3
ft
3
/s/ft total seepage flux = 6.80 x 10
-3

ft
3

/s/ft.}








Figure 4.31 Seepage flow net for rockfill toe homogeneous e/f dam. (b), (c) by Seep/W
showing equi potential lines and flow lines respectively.
(a)
(c)
(b)
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-58
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Blanket drain thickness:
The thickness of the blanket drain required to pass seepage discharge q per unit width is as:
d d d
K K H K L q t
1
5 . 1 = where L is shoulder width at drain level, H is the reservoir
water depth above drain level, K
1
= permeability of dam core material and K
d
Seepage Analysis by Computer Software
is permeability
of drain material.(Novak et al. 1998, p-61)
Computer software are available (e.g SEEP/W) to determine seepage flow through the
dam embankment and the foundation. These programs are user friendly and easily
incorporate the seepage control measures, the seepage exit conditions, varying material
properties, etc. The program result provides seepage flux through selected sections, equi
potential contours, distribution of potential/head, seepage flux vectors, and seepage flow
lines, etc.
Permissible Seepage
Seepage control measures are provided to reduce seepage quantity and the uplift
pressures due to seepage flows. The seepage quantity is usually not very large and the
seeping water could be used beneficially at some downstream location. The uplift pressures
are usually more critical in the stability of the dam structure. Thus seepage control measures
are sized to achieve acceptable gradients in the flow domain. Cedergen (1967) defined the
acceptable average hydraulic gradients exerted by the water seeping through the embankment
and foundations should not exceed the following critical values.
Impervious core 1:4
Impervious blanket 1:15
Alluvial foundation 1:0.066 (15:1)
Rock foundation 1:1
Materials placed around seepage water collection system to comply with filter criteria.
[Source: Cedergren, H. R. 1967. Seepage, Drainage and Flownets, 2
nd
Gradient method: 1) determine average hydraulic gradient in soil element, 2) determine
magnitude of seepage force (F = 62.5 I V, V = element volume), 3) determine direction of
seepage force, 4) line of action of seepage force.
edition, John Wiley
& Sons Inc., New York] p-115, 16.

4.13 STABILITY ANALYSIS
Dam sections are analysis for safety against failure by shear and sliding. The sliding
of dam can occur at base of dam or any height above the base. Most earthfill dams built with
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-59
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

good material and placed on sound foundation are considered safe against sliding. The safety
against shear failure is analyzed for the following conditions: (Sherard p-326)
1. During and after construction for both u/s and d/s faces. Assume pore pressure
high and not drained; Analysis is based on lab Q test
2. Full reservoir steady seepage d/s face; Analysis is based on lab S - test
3. Rapid drawdown u/s face pore water undrained and pore pressure high;
Analysis is based on lab R- test
4. Seismic loading; Analysis is based on lab R- test
A factor of safety is determined for various situations. The dam section is accepted if the
factor of safety for the selected loading condition is higher than recommended values. Else
the dam section (i.e. side slope of core and shell and materials) is revised and safety re-
evaluated.

Method of Slices / Sweadish Circle Method
Procedure
Problem is considered in 2-D space (cross section)
a continuous potential surface of shear failure (usually called slip surface) passing
through dam embankment and/or foundation is assumed. Slip surface could be a
combination of part of a circle, an arc, line, etc. Sliding surface-circular or
combination of arc and straight lines (Fig. 4.32).
Slip surface as circle
Slip surface as lines
Slip surface as arc
Slip surface as arc + line
Figure 4.32: Various shapes of slip surface as circle, arc, lines.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-60
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Shape and location of the slip surface chosen arbitrarily.
Material above the selected slip surface is called a trial sliding mass
The trial sliding mass divided into 8-10 slices as in Fig 4.33. (dam unit thick)
Width of each slice adjusted so that entire base of a slice is located on a single
material and chord length L does not significantly differ from arc length.
Available shear force from material properties S = c + tan is determined along
base of selected surface
Actual shear force from loading conditions determined.
Factor of safety F
S
Procedure is repeated for other potential failure surfaces until a critical surface
obtained with lowest factor of safety.
= Shear strength force available Shear force applied
Analysis is based on shear strength derived on the basis of total stress S = c +
tan , or effective stress as : S = c + tan , where = - u.















For each slice of bottom width b, compute forces as:
a) Total weight W of the slice. W = area of slice x slice thickness (unit) x grass
unit weight (Soil + water). For same height of the two sides of the slice area =
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
11
12
15
b
W
5

T
5

N
5


Assumed slip surface (circle) through embankment and foundation
CORE
Figure 4.33: Dam stability analysis by method of slices.
W
5

T
5

N
5

b
L
D

Slice # 5
Center of slip circle
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-61
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

D x b. For marked difference in length of two sides, area of trepezoid as A =
(D
L
+ D
R
b) Normal component of W force acting on bottom of slice: N = W cos
)/2 x b.
c) Tangential component of weight: T = W sin
d) Total water potential h acting on the slice bottom is determined from the equi-
potential contour map. The pore water pressure head (units of L) is then
determined as u = h z, where z is the elevation of the bottom from selected
datum. Total pore water pressure head U acting on bottom of slice as: U = u x
b/cos x 1 = average pore water pressure x area of bottom of slice. Area of
bottom of slice = L x 1 = b/cos x 1. The pore water pressure head U is
converted to force units as U
Force units
= U
Length units
x
e) The cohesion of the material c or c is determined from lab tests of the
materials. The total shearing resistance component due to cohesion C = unit
cohesion x area of bottom of slice. Thus C = c b/cos
w

f) Total shear resistance which can be developed on the bottom of the any slice
at failure: S = C + (N - U) tan [N-U = ]
g) Determine sum of tangential force T and shear resistance S on all slices.
h) Safety factor F = S/T = [C+(N-U) tan ] / W x Sin
NOTE: T, U and N may be worked as continuous curve across all slices. Normal components
pass through center of rotation and does not cause any driving moment on the slice.
Tangential component T causes a driving moment M=T x r, r = radius of slip surface.
Resisting forces determined from Columbs equation.
For homogeneous and uniform cohesive soils a circular arc is considered for slip
circle. The locus of the centre of the critical circle with r
u
Z
< 0.3 is approximated as:
c
= H Cot (0.6 + 2 tan ) and Y
c
where Z
= H Cot (0.6 - tan )
c
, Y
c
= coordinate w.r.t. toe of dam (+ve up and left), = slope angle, H = height, z =
depth below ground surface, r
u
= dimensionless pore pressure ratio, = u
w
Method of Sliding block
/Z.
Same as method of slices, but 2-3 slices only called blocks.
Stability of D/s slope for steady seepage
For steady seepage the d/s slope is liable to shear failure. A slip surface is selected over the
d/s slope. The sliding mass is divided into slices or blocks and factor of safety determined by
above procedure. The pore water pressure along the base of sliding slices is determined from
an equipotential contour of the d/s slope (Fig. 4.34).
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-62
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams



9




1
2




1
4




1
6




1
8




2
0




2
2




2
4




2
6




2
8




3
0




3
0




3
2




3
4




3
6




3
7




3
8




3
9




4
0




4
0




4
2




4
4




4
5



4
6




5
1




5
2




5
3



5
4



Figure 4.34: Equipotential lines for steady seepage in a vertical core earthfill dam.
Stability of U/S slope During Sudden Drawdown
When reservoir is suddenly lowered, the Hydrostatic force acting on u/s force is
removed and weight of water tends to help a sliding failure as no outside pressure to
counteract it. Water in the saturated mass tend to drain towards both U/S face and the
permeable foundation. Permeability of foundation material affects drainage pattern. If
foundation is permeable then flow is downward, if impermeable flow horizontally outward
towards outer faces. The U/S face is not an equipotential line but potential varies with height
as h = z = elevation. Water potential within the saturated mass of soil changes according to
the u/s potential.
A slip surface is considered along the u/s face. Determine h, z, and u = h-z on bottom
of the slices along the slip surface. The pore water pressure is determined from corresponding
equipotential contour map (Figure 4.35). Determine safety factor by procedure above.
No change in water content within the saturated mass of the earthfill.
Hydrostatic force acting on u/s face is removed and potential at face h = z (point height)
Weight of water tend to help sliding failure as no outside pressure to counteract it.
Permeability of foundation material affect drainage pattern. If more permeable, flow
downward, if imp, flow is horizontally outward.


9




1
0



1
2




1
4




1
4




1
6




1
7




1
8




2
0


2
0



2
2



2
2




2
4




2
4




2
5




2
6




2
6




2
7




2
8




2
8




2
9




3
0




3
0




3
2




3
4




3
6




3
7


3
8

3
9

40


4
0


42
44
45
46

Figure 4.35: Equipotential lines for sudden drawdown in a vertical core earthfill dam.

U/s + d/s face during and at end of construction
The embankment fill of core is compacted to maximum dry density at optimum moisture
content. Soil mass changes due to compaction and by its own weight. The pore water
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-63
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

pressure increases on compaction due to decrease of void ratio. The pore water pressure after
compaction is determined by Hilfs equation as (Fig. 4.36).
+

=
w c a
a
V h V
P
u
where
u = pore water induced pressure
P
a
= embankment compression in % of original total embankment volume
= air pressure in voids of soil mass after initial compaction atmospheric
pressure corrected for the site elevation)
V
a
V
= Volume of free air voids as % of original total embankment volume
w
h
= Volume of pore water as % of original total embankment volume
c
= Henery constant of stability of air in water = 0.02 at 68
o

F






Figure 4.36: Consolidation and water potential in dams.
Draw graph between effective stress and % compression (Plot 1)
For each , determine u from Hilfs equation. Also determine corresponding
from plot 1. Determine = + u.
Draw u vs. (plot 2)
Find mid height D of each slice bottom
Calculate total stress = D and find u for each slice from plot 2 corresponding to
.
Determine the safety factor as above procedure.
NOTE: DAVIS. HAH P.18-38
In zoned dam, critical circle is located so that a maximum portion of its length passes through
materials of lowest shear strength (core or foundation layer). The slip surface can be as part
of Toe circle, Slope circle or Midpoint circle.
%


u
Plot 1
Plot 2
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-64
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams











Recommended Factor of Safety (Novak)
Design loading F
s
During/end of construction 1.25 1.25 (1.3 to 1,5)
u/s d/s
+ earth quake 1.0 1.0
Reservoir full/partial (steady conditions) - 1.5
+ earth quake - 1.1
Rapid drawdown 1.2 -
(Slip circle between highest and lowest water levels)
Seismic loading 1.1 1.1
Steady seepage + surcharge pool condition - 1.4
Example:
The Fig. 4.38 shows section of an earthfill dam at its maximum depth showing steady
seepage phreatic line, equipotential lines, a trial slip surface A-B-C-D-E. Scale: 1 block = 5x5
m. Dam height = 60 m, depth at normal conservation level = 55 m, U/s slope = 2:1, d/s slope
= 2:1, Core uniform width = 20 m, core height = 55 m. The material properties are as: Core:
c' = 5 KPa, ' = 30, average unit weight = 20 KN/m
3
, K = 1 x 10
-5
cm/s. Fill: c' = 3 KPa, '
= 35, = 18 KN/m
3
, K = 5 x 10
-4
Solution:
cm/s. Determine the factor of safety for the d/s face for
steady seepage condition for the shown slip surface by using method of sliding blocks.
The slip area is divided into four sliding blocks 1 to 4. The width, side height are noted for
each block as: width = 20, 20, 40 and 30 m and sections heights as 15, 35, 35, 20 and 0.
1: Total weight of each block.
W1 = 5x15x18 + 10x15x20 + (15x20)/2x20 = 1350 + 3000 + 3000 = 7350 KN
W2 = (35+35)/2x20x18 = 12600 KN
W3 = (35+20)/2x40x18 = 19800 KN W4 = (20+0)/2*30*18 = 5400 KN
2. Bottom length:
L1 = [15
2
+25
2
]
0.5
= 29.15 m; L2 = [20
2
+10
2
]
0.5
L3 = [40
= 22.36m;
2
+5
2
]
0.5
= 40.31 m; L4 = [30
2
+5
2
]
0.5
= 30.41 m
Mid point circle
Slope circle
Toe circle
Figure 4.37: Trial slip circle.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-65
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams



9




1
2




1
4




1
6




1
8




2
0




2
2




2
4




2
6




2
8



3
0




3
0




3
2




3
4




3
6




3
7




3
8




3
9




4
0




4
0




4
2




4
4




4
5




4
6




5
1















Figure 4.38: Dam d/s slope stability for constant seepage.
3. Inclination of bottom
1 = tan
-1
(25/15) = 59.04 2 = tan
-1
3 = tan
(10/20) = 26.57
-1
(5/40) = 7.13 4 = tan
-1
4. Component of block weight normal to base N:
(5/30) = - 9.46
N1 = 7350 x cos 59.04 = 3781 KN N2 = 12600 x cos 26.57 = 11269 KN
N3 = 19800 x cos 7.13 = 19647 KN N4 = 5400 x cos 9.46 = 5327 KN
N in core = N1 = 3781 KN; N in fill = N1+N2+N3=11269+19647+5327 = 36243 KN
5. Component of block weight normal to base T:
T1 = 7350 sin 59.04 = 6303 KN T2 = 12600 x sin 26.57 = 5636 KN
T4 = 19800 x sin 7.13 = 2458 KN T4 = 5400 x sin -9.46 = - 888 KN
T = 6303 + 5636 + 2458 888 = 13509 KN = Total shearing force
6. Total water pressure head h, elevation, and net pore water pressure at points B, C, D, E,
F:
h (m) = 47.5 37.0 33.4 24.9 15
z (m) = 45 25 15 10 15
u (m) = 2.5 12 18.4 14.9 0
u (KPa) = 24.52 117.72 180.50 146.17 0
Average pore water pressure u along bottom of each block:
u1 = (24.52+117.72)/2 = 71.12 KPa, u2 = (117.72+180.50)/2 = 149.11 KPa,
u3 = (180.50 + 146.17)/2 = 163.33 KPa, u4 = (146.17 + 0)/2 = 73.08 KPa.
Total pore water pressure force along block bottom U:
U1 = 71.12 KPa x 29.15 m x 1 m= 2073 KN U2 = 149.11 x 22.36 = 3334 KN
U3 = 163.33 x 40.31 x 1 = 6584 KN U4 = 73.08 x 30.41 x 1 = 2223 KN
U in core = U1 = 2073 KN; U in fill = 3334 + 6584 + 2223 = 12141 KN
7. Cohesion along slip surface C:
C1 = (3x5 + 5x10 + 5x29.15) x 1 = 211 KN C2 = 3x22.36x1 = 67 KN
C3 = 3x40.31 x 1 = 121 KN C4 = 3 x 30.41 x 1 = 91 KN
C = 211 + 67 + 121 + 91 = 490 KN
A
B
C
D
E
F
2
1
3
4
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-66
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

8. Total shearing resistance mobilized:
S = 490 + (3781 - 2073) tan 30 + (36243 12141) tan 35 = 490 + 986 + 16876 = 18352 KN
9. Factor of safety FOS = 18352/13509 = 1.359

STABILITY OF FOUNDTION AGAINST SHEAR
Foundations of finer loose cohesionless materials or of unconsolidated clays and silts-
weak in shear.
Approximate method
Assumption earthen material has an equivalent liquid unit weight which would
produce same shear stress as the material itself.
P = total horizontal shear down to rigid boundary
)
2
45 ( tan
2
1 2
m
2
2
2

=
h h
P
i

1
= equivalent angle of friction
1
1 m
1
c tan h
tan
h
m

+
=
where
, c = shear parameters of foundation materials

m
1
2 2 1
) (
h
h h h
f d
m

+
=
= mean unit weight of dam and foundation weighted in proportion to depth of each

d
= unit weight of dam material and
f
Max unit shear S
= unit weight of foundation material.
max
= 1.4 S
av
Now average unit shear = s
and occur at point B which is 0.4 b from C
av
Let S
= P/b
1
= unit shear strength below toe (at A) = c +
f
h
2
S
tan
2
= unit shear strength at point C = c +
m
h
1
Average shear strength S = (S
tan
1
+ S
2
Overall factor of safety against shear = S/S
)/2
av
Factor of safety at maximum shear:
. This schould be > 1.5
Let S = Unit shear strength at point of max. shear (point B) = c +
av

h tan
av
= mean effective unit weight = (
d
h +
f
h
2
) / (h+h
2
) and F.S. = S/S
max
. This should be
greater than 1.0
h
1

h
2

b
0.4b
h
P
A B C
Rigid boundary
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-67
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Inter slice Force
Slice Normal force at base
= W + (X
L
X
R
) + N Cos + S
m
Ordinary or Fellenius No inter slice forces
- D Sin w
Bishop horizontal - yes, Shear No
Janbu horizontal - No, No shear-but a correction
factor used to account for interslice shear force
Stability may be ascertained by considering Moment or force
equilibrium
Moment equilibrium on individual slice or Overall sliding man
Force equilibrium summation of horizontal forces
Inter slice shear force X = E f(x)
f(x) = inter slice force function
= % (in decimal) of function used
Weight W increased/decreased by X amount
SAFETY AGAINST SETTLEMENT AND DEFORMATION [Novak et al. 1990]
Dams are provided with some free board for safety against overtopping. The dam fill
material is however liable to settle and deform resulting in decrease of free board. To assure
safety against future settlement of dam crest, the crest is elevated by the amount of future
settlement.
The primary consolidation
1
which develop as excess pore water pressure are
dissipated (during the course of construction of the dam embankment) can be estimated in
terms of coefficient of compressibility m
v
, the depth of compressible soil and mean vertical
effective stress increase as:
1
= m
v
Embankment:
. Then:
1e
= m
ve

d
H
2
/2, [ =
d
Foundation:
H2/2]
1f
= m
vf
D
f

f
[
f
= I
d
where H = embankment height, D
Ze]
f
The secondary consolidation settlement
is depth of compressible foundation, I is influence factor
(depending on foundation elasticity and depth-width ratio; for representative
embankment/dam foundation geometries I ~ 0.90-0.99.)
2
can be estimated from the coefficient of
secondary consolidation C

as:
2
= C

z log(t
2
/t
1
) where z is the height H or D
f
as
appropriate and times t
2
and t
1
are relative to completion of primary consolidation. Values of
C

See worked example 2.4 by Noval et al. 1990.


are generally below 0.002 for over consolidated clay fills, rising to 0.005 and 0.5 for
softer normally consolidated clays.

E
R

E
L

X
R

X
L

W
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-68
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

II: ROCKFILL DAMS

4.21 ROCKFILL DAM (Source: USBR ch-7, Golze ch-7)
Rockfill dams are type of embankment dams where more than 50% rock mass
of varying size and quality is used for construction of the embankment. The rockfill has
usually very large permeability and thus large amounts of water can seep through the rockfill
embankment. Thus a seepage control membrane is used to minimize seepage through the
embankment. The alignment of the dam (dam axis) is selected for minimum embankment
volume and/or membrane exposure. There are two main modes of seepage control membrane.
Internal membrane (central core). The membrane is located inside the
embankment (Figs. 4.41 and 4.42). The membrane materials include earth/clay
core, reinforced cement concrete (RC), roller compacted concrete (RCC), asphalt
concrete, steel or other metals. The clay core may be thin or thick, located in the
middle or near the u/s face, may be vertical or inclined.
External u/s face. The membrane is located at the u/s face of the rockfill dam (Fig.
4.43). The membrane materials include cement concrete, RCC, steel, timber, stone
/ rubble or PCC masonry, asphalt concrete.
















A and E: Rockfill
B and D: graded filter / transition
C: Vertical internal seepage control
membrane (earth core)
D
Figure 4.41 A typical rockfill dam section with vertical internal seepage control membrane
E
C
B
A
A and E: Rockfill
B and D: graded filter / transition
C: Inclined internal seepage control
membrane (earth core)
D
Figure 4.42. A typical rockfill dam section with inclined internal seepage control membrane
E
C
B
A
E1 E2
E3
E1 small size rocks
E2 medium size rocks
E3 large size rocks
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-69
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams










Figure 4.44: Glennies Creek Dam (67 meters high, concrete faced rock fill dam CFRD) on
Glennies Creek. [Source: http://members.optusnet.com.au/~richardw2/projects.html]


A- seepage control and face
protection membrane
B- membrane bedding layer
C- random fill of low quality
rock
D- rockfill of best quality
rock
C
D
Figure 4.43 A typical rockfill dam section with external seepage control membrane
A
B
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-70
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Figure 4.45: Rockfill dam: d/s view.
4.22 CONDITIONS FAVORING CHOICE OF ROCKFILL DAM
Large quantities of rock usually readily available from structural excavation or a
nearby quarry site.
Earth materials are difficult to obtain or require expensive + extensive processing.
Short construction season (allows simultaneous during unfavorable weather as
excess moisture not an issue for u/s face membrane dams).
Excessive wet climate restricting placement of earth materials
The dam is to be raised at a later time
Rockfill can be placed during rainy season. Grouting foundation can be done
simultaneously with embankment placement.
Diversion floods are very large and large diversion arrangements very costly. The
flood can flow through/over the dam without failure or with small damage.
Uplift pressure and erosion due to seepage not a significant design problem
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-71
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Short structure base lengths due to steeper slopes
Short coffer dam (can be placed within the gorge length) and also overtopping can
be permitted.
4.23 EMBANKMENT DETAILS
4.23.1 Materials
The design of the rockfill dam depends on placement and materials of the seepage
control membrane. The typical sections are shown in Figs. 4.41 to 4.43.
U/s Face membrane
A. Face protection
B. Membrane bedding layer of Well graded small size rock/gravel
C. Random fill-low quality Lesser quality excavation materials
D. Best quality rock Best quality large size this section provide high stability to
dam
Internal membrane
A+E Rockfill
B+D Graded filter/transition (One or more zones)
C Earth core
Selection depends on availability of rock
Smaller size rocks close to filter/transition zones
Larger size rock of highest quality on u/s & d/s slope
Thin earth core as vertical or inclined
4.23.2 Traditional vs Present Design
Breitenbach 2007 summarized historical record rockfill placement and compaction
indicates 4 milestones in rockfill dam construction. The first milestone included the use of
low level hand placed rockfill dumps with timber facing on the upstream slope in the 1850s
for water storage and gold sluicing operations. The second milestone included a gradual
increase in water storage dam heights to over 300 feet (100 m) high using thick dry and loose
rockfill dump lift placement by trucks or draglines without compaction into the 1940s. The
third milestone included the use of high-pressure water jets and flooding techniques to wet
and consolidate the thick loose rockfill dump lifts to achieve up to 85 percent of total dam
settlement before reservoir filling from the 1940s into the 1950s. The fourth milestone
included control of rockfill lift thickness with dozer spreading and roller compaction, in
addition to documentation of rockfill gradation, moisture, and density in large-scale test fills
from the 1960s to the present day.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-72
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams



Figure 4.46: Rockfill embankment traditional construction technique. Top: Rock dump loose
lift placement in 45 ft (15 m) thickness. Bottom: Rock segregation with boulders at
bottom of rock dump lift (Breitenbach 2007)
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-73
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams



Figure 4.47: Present day construction of rockfill embankment. Top: 0.5 m thick rockfill lift
placement by haul truck and dozer. Bottom: Fill lift compaction with steel smooth
drum vibratory roller. (Breitenbach 2007)
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-74
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.48: Wetting and compacting 2 ft (0.6 m) thick loose rockfill lift with 20 ton
vibratory compactor roller 2005

Figure 4.49: Rockfill bulk density test. (L) - 1 m diameter plate for large scale rockfill
sample. (M) - Water replacement test in hand excavated and lined hole, (R) - Bulk
gradation test on excavated rockfill materials. (Breitenbach 2007)
Traditional design (Dumped rockfill)
Rocks dumped in high lifts 30 to 60 ft.
No compaction-point to point bearing
Smaller size rocks sluiced with high pressure water volume 2-4 times rock vol.
(dirty rock need more water) Sluicing with 2-4 inch dia nozzles.
Rock angular corners break easily on wetting and thus denser packing
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-75
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Settlement is caused due to wetting and rock mass weight + rock thrust on rolling
down the slope + height of drop
U/s hand or derrick placed rock zone or rubble masonry required to form support
for face membrane.
Present design (Compacted rockfill)
Rock material dumped in thin layers, spreaded by dozers and compacted by
vibratory rollers of 5 to 50 ton capacity. Lift varies 1 to 2 m only.
Has very small post construction settlement.
Wide range of rock (size, quality) may be used
Concurrent work in adjacent areas unaffected
4.23.3 U/s and d/s Face Slopes
Slopes depend on type and location of membrane. Slopes evolved from steep (0.5
H: 1V) to flat (1.3-1.7:1)
Steep slopes used to minimize rock volume and cost
Steep slopes possible with u/s face membrane
For past design the steep slopes were stabilized by thick crane-placed dry rubble
masonry (and which provide as support zone for the bedding layer for u/s
membrane). No derrick/crane placed rock work required for present design
Slope flattened to match angle of repose
Central sloping core: 2:1 to 4:1 both u/s & d/s (flatter slopes for central core)
U/S face membrane: concrete u/s 1.3-1.7:1, d/s natural angle (1.3 1.4 :1),
Asphalt concrete face 1.6 1.7:1, Steel, u/s 1.3-1.4:1, D/s 1.3- 1.4
4.23.4 Rock Quality
Hard, durable and able to withstand disintegration due to weathering.
Resist excessive breakage due to quarrying (rock blasted at quarry), loading,
hauling and placing operations
Free of unstable minerals
Individual rocks of uniform size for good rock-to-rock contact.
Igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic rocks all used successively.
Each dam site a unique problem, thus General guidelines only.
Rock quality determined by lab tests and/or in-situ inspections of weathering
marks at the rock quarry site.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-76
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Test embankment to answer i. Use of marginal materials, ii. Performance of
materials during compaction operation, iii. Correct compaction equipment, iv.
Number of passes, v. Correct lift for each material
4.23.5 Rock Sources
Rock can be obtained from many sources as: Excavation for foundations, structures,
spillway, stilling basin, tunnels, underground power houses etc., Quarry rock near dam site,
Talus slopes, etc. Angular rock fragments can be obtained from the from river bed if
cobbles/boulders
4.23.6 Rock Size
Use Rock of sp gravity = 2.67 2.94+, weight not less than 160 lb/cft = 2560 kg/m3
Past Design
Zone B: Mix. of: (between bedding layer and C
zone see figure)
40% - quarry chip to 1000 lbs (375 kg) of
compressive strength > 350 kg/cm
2
30% 1000-3000 lbs (1/2 to 1.5 tons
having 0.45 to 0.75 m size)
(5000 psi)
30% 3000-14000 lb (1.5 to 6 tons of 0.75 to 1.25 m size)
<3 % quarry dust
Maximum dimension not more than 3 times min dimension
Zone D: Extra large rock
50% > 14000 lbs (4.5 ft)
50% 6000 14000 lbs (3.25 to 4.5 ft)
Max dimension not more than 4 times minimum dimension
Zone C: Random quality rock as Mix.
Quarry chips to 14000 lbs
Present design with compacted layers
(I) With u/s face membrane (A):
D Good quality rock of 1 cft to 1 cubic yard
size, No slaby rocks (to avoid bridging), well
graded, minimum finer part.
C Low quality: 3 to 1 cft
B C
D
C
D
A
B
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-77
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

B Bedding layer: 3 to provide smooth uniform bearing surface for the u/s face
membrane
Note: (1) For C D zones fine rock placed nearer to u/s face and coarse rock nearer to d/s.
Strongest material is placed in lower part of zone D to improve stability. The internal
friction angle decreases with rock size and confining pressure.
(2) The lift (lift = fill height) should be at least twice the size of the largest rock. The
B zone is dumped in 30 cm (1 ft) lifts, leveled and compacted with crawler or
vibratory rollers. The C and D zones are dumped with 1 m and 1-2 m lifts,
respectively and compacted with vibratory rollers. The material is thoroughly wetted
during truck dumping time (but not sluiced) before compaction.
(3) For asphalt face, a thin B zone is enough, and compaction is done by smooth drum
vibratory rollers up the face.
(II) With Central core:
The u/s and d/s rock shell provide support to the core. Thus strongest and large rocks
in d/s rockfill shell/zones. The u/s shell may be formed of lesser quality rock. For both u/s
and d/s shells, the smaller size rock is placed nearer and adjacent to the core while larger size
rocks is placed towards the outer faces. The rock material placed on u/s and d/s face to be of
sufficient size and quality to satisfy the riprap requirements. No bedding layer is required
below the riprap due to sufficient porous nature of the rockfill.
General grading of rock material as: 0-10% - 0.6 mm, 0-40% -5 mm, 0-65% - 19 mm,
22-100% - 76 mm, 60-100% - 305 mm, 100 % - 610 mm.
The u/s and d/s shell rockfill is compacted in 1 m lifts with vibratory rollers. The
sluicing is done in such a way that will not clog filters or impermeable materials washed
away.
The filter/transition zones are compacted in 30 cm lifts by crawler or vibratory rollers.
The width of filter zone should be enough for placing and compaction. Filters materials
prevent piping of the impervious materials into the rock shells.
The core is compacted in 15 cm layers and compacted by sheep foot rollers +
vibratory or tamping rollers. The top surface is scarify / roughened before the next layer to
obtain an effective bond. The core material to have enough plasticity index to allow the core
to deform without cracking.
4.23.7 Rockfill Dam: Overflow and through Flow
Flow through rock voids
Unsupported d/s slope liable to erode and collapse
Provide an anchorage system to support d/s face
If larger rocks at d/s face, then no support needed
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-78
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Grid of steel bars anchored by tie back rods extending horizontally into the rock
mass (12 to 20 mm rods 30 cm vertical spacing and 1-1.5 m horizontal spacing)
Alternatively slope stabilization by concrete slabs, asphalt concrete membranes,
long flat berm of heavy rock also useful


Figure 4.50: Steel mesh being installed on downstream rock fill face of Windamere Dam as
protection against overtopping during diversion. In the background the impermeable brown
clay core of the dam can be seen under construction. (Source:
http://members.optusnet.com.au/~engineeringgeologist/page11.html)
4.23.8 Test Embankment
Laboratory tests (abrasion resistance, freeze-thaw characteristics, water
absorption) used to evaluate suitability of rock.
Petrographic analysis for minerals identification and rock weathering potential.
Unconfined or triaxial tests for strength evaluation.
In-situ examination of rock to check weathering condition.
Test embankment to evaluate performance of rocks with questionable properties.
It is used to determine following issues
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-79
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

- use or not of marginal materials
- performance of selected materials during compaction operations
- correct type of compaction equipment for each material
- required number of compaction passes for each material
- correct lift thickness for each material
- effects of particle crushing
4.24 FOUNDATION
4.24.1 Foundation Requirements
Foundation requirements for rockfill dam is more severe than earthfill dam but less
severe than concrete gravity dam. Hard erosion resistant bed rock is most suitable. Rockfill
dams are not suitable in soft foundation of sand, silt and clay. Foundation with river gravel +
rock fragments is acceptable (A positive cutoff must to bed rock to control seepage).
Foundation is treated for minimum dam settlement. Filters to protect migration of fines from
the foundation into rockfill.
For rock foundation grouting is done to seal-off rock imperfections. If geology of the
foundation is unknown, complete grouting is done, and shallow grouting may be enough if
geology permits. For cobbles-gravel-sand foundation the under seepage through the
foundation is minimized by providing a positive cutoff. For a deep foundation a partial cutoff
(concrete, metal, sheet pile etc) is provided in upper part with cement grouting beneath the
cutoff. Some grouting may be needed into the rock below the positive cutoff. Post
construction grouting may be required depending on seepage measurements of first few years
if reservoir can be drawn down to the bottom. Cutoffs Provides leakage control, facilitate
grouting operation (as grout cap), provide water tight seal with membrane, and take
downward thrust of membrane
4.24.2 Foundation Preparation
Rockfill dams usually founded on some type of rock
Rock may be exposed at surface or buried
Stripping of shallow over burden of sand-gravel-cobbles foundation under the
core (3-5 m deep) to form a key trench. For other areas e.g. under the shells, the
foundations strength may be more than dam fill material, thus no need to strip or
excavate.
Shallow clay-silt-sand foundation to be stripped for entire dam base (core and
shells)
Over hangs in foundation and abutment be eliminated
Trimming/excavation not to damage bed rock
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-80
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Large depressions below desired bottom contours filled with dental concrete
Foundation preparation is less severe under rock shells
Prominent rock projection removed.
4.24.3 Grouting
Minimize seepage through dam foundation
Reduce hydrostatic pressure under d/s portion of dam (usually not a problem for
clear rocks)
Eliminate piping through dam foundation
Blanket and curtain grouting in and adjacent to core foundation area
Fractured/faulted rocks upper 30 ft blanket grouted to prevent piping of fines from
core into rock crevices
Single or multiple line of grout under core
Grouting pressure to avoid fracturing or moving of rocks.
4.25 SEEPAGE MEMBRANE
4.25.1 Options
Seepage membrane is required to stop the seepage through the dam embankment.
Central core (vertical or sloping/inclined) or u/s membrane are used for this purposes. The
materials for the membrane include reinforced cement concrete (RC), roller compacted
concrete (RCC), steel, timber, stone / rubble or PCC masonry, asphalt concrete for u/s face
membrane and earth/clay, reinforced cement concrete RC, RCC, steel, stone / rubble or PCC
masonry, asphalt concrete for central core dams. Economic and safety analysis is done to
choose type and design of the membrane. The advantages and disadvantages vary according
to type, materials available, and foundation condition.
Advantages of Internal membranes
- Less total area exposed to water (due to steep slope)
- Shorter grout curtain length (shorter axis length at shortest line of dam
axis)
- Potential safety from weathering and external damages
- Core location precisely known (a plus point when additional grouting
works may be needed in future)
Disadvantages of Internal membrane
- Simultaneous construction is must both for membrane and rockfill.
- Inaccessibility to inspection and damage repair
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-81
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

- Small dam base for stability against sliding
- Need flatter dam shell side slope if E/F core
- Filters/transition zone required for earth core
- Adequate construction control required if several filter zones are required
due to coarse shell.
- Through and over flow not permitted
Advantages of u/s membrane
- Readily available for inspection and repair
- Membrane can be constructed after rockfill section
- Foundation grouting can be performed simultaneously with rockfill dam
- Large portion of dam base for sliding stability
- Membrane works as slope protection
- Dam raising easy
- Flow through dam body permitted during dam construction
4.25.2 Membrane Design Internal Core
1: Earth Core
Impervious Central Core of Earth
Enough quantity of earthfill available for core
Used when u/s abutments widely apart in comparison to dam axis length
Or show highly weathered rock to great depth and require adequate grouting
/cutoff.
Or higher elevation of abutment with deep layers of overburden thus trench type
installation less economical
Design same as for earthfill dam, seepage and stability analysis required.
Material placed in 6 lifts and compacted by tampering rollers
Core material to have enough plasticity to allow it to deform without cracking on
dam deflection.
Filter zones provided (one or multiple zone of 8-15 ft thick)
Foundations and abutments opposite to core be treated to prevent piping
Joints, cracks, fissures in core area be cleaned out and filled with concrete or
grouted; additional future grouting of foundation can be carried from dam crest.
Vertical side faces/overhangs of abutments trimmed to 1H:2V
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-82
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Bottom width 0.5 h to 2.5 h
U/s and d/s slopes symmetrical (0.3 H:1V 1.5H:1V), or u/s flatter than d/s face.
Dam slopes as x+1 H:1V (minimum 2:1) [x = core slope]
Chimney/blanket drain to drain off seepage flow (from the earth core and other
core / membranes.
Location is central vertical position











Sloping Earth Cores
These core located closer to u/s face, almost paralleling the u/s face
Filter zones on u/s & d/s of core
Provide more stability against sliding (provide better transfer of water pressure to
foundation and d/s shell)
Usually thin width, width decreases at top
Bottom width 30 to 50 ft
Top width 15 to 20 ft
Advantages: grouting cutoff can be at same of d/s fill placement
U/S face: core = 1.4H:1V Dam: u/s face 2:1 or flatter, d/s face = 1.4:1
Core can be placed after initial settlement of rockfill (less subsequent cracking
risk)
Section better to pass flood flows as through flow (d/s anchoring needed)
1
1
1
1
> 2
2
1.4
1.9
Z
> Z
Figure 4.51: : Sloping earth core rockfill dams.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-83
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Due to lower contact pressure at foundation more susceptible to seepage and
piping
Additional grouting, if required difficult as foundation contact area likely under
water.
Works as u/s earth face rockfill dam with face protected by dumped quarry rock.
Moderate Sloping earth core
U/s 0.5H;1V to 0.9 H:1 V, d/s 0.5:1
Moderately sloping core has clear advantage with respect to arching
U/S dam slope can be made steeper than for extremely sloping core for stability
reason
2 Other Materials for Central Core
Limited success due to rigid nature
Reinforced Concrete
6 ft at bottom to 1 ft at top
Large deflection (e.g. at one dam 9 ft in 4
years & additional 5 ft in next 38 years)
Core cracking due to lateral movement of shell
Use of concrete practically discontinued
Concrete cutoff in foundation and extending partially into impervious earth core
used in modern dam to improve contact and seepage control and sliding safety.
Steel Diaphragm
Centrally located
Deterioration of steel due to water contact (oxidation, corrosion, potting, holes)
Impossibility of repairing
Limited used in few installation
Bituminous Material
Used for small height dams
Thin cores 40-100 cm in thickness
Transition zone to provide uniform support and for filter, if any leakage/rupture
Can be vertical or slightly inclined

Earth core
Concrete
cutoff
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-84
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams



Figure 4.52: Top: Cross section of an asphalt core rockfill dam in Norway that was
constructed with an only one meter thick. Very high quality control is necessary for
such a thin core. Bottom: Construction.
[Source:
http://cee.engr.ucdavis.edu/faculty/boulanger/geo_photo_album/Embankment%20da
ms/Zoned%20rockfill%20dams/Zoned%20rockfill%20-%20main.html]
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-85
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

4.25.3 U/s face membrane
Concrete Faced Rockfill Dam (CFRD)
RCC slabs placed at face over bedding layer
Slab thickness and reinforcement requirements by experience, precedent and
judgment
Criteria
- Low permeability
- Sufficient strength to permit large subsided areas beneath the facing
- High resistant to weathering
- Flexible to adjust to small embankment settlements
Best suited for compacted rockfill dams due to lesser chance of settlement and
deflection.
Well compacting bedding layer (4+4+8 passes) reduce bridging requirements and
provide more uniform support to the face layer.
Concrete to be dense, durable, weather/chemical resistant
Slab placed in blocks 20-60 ft square
Horizontal + vertical expansion joints and construction joints are provided. Gaps
filled with flexible bitumen.
Metal or rubber water stops (1 or more layers) in joints
Concrete facing result in smooth surface and increase wave run up (but due to
steeper slopes, net run up may not increase much)
Coping or parapet walls (5-10 ft) (Fig. 4. (a)) in continuation of face concrete to
reduce height of embankment by containing wave run up.
Concrete placement by slip forming process
Shortcrete (roller compacted concrete RCC) may also be used
Facing provided after dam construction (to allow dam settlement)
Concrete facing anchored to the foundation cutoff wall through continuous
reinforcement (Fig. 4. (b))
May be anchored to flat bottom with dowel anchored footwall which also serve as
grout cap (Fig. 4 (c)).
Slabs 20-60 ft square slip formed; Contraction joints horizontal
Minimum temperature reinforcement 5%
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-86
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Thickness tapered t =0.3 +0.002h (min 1.5 at base to 1 at top) [KTD 6.6 ft to 1
ft over 315 ft height)











Figure 4.54: concrete face slab construction work by slip forming. Note the reinforcement
and machine control. [@ http://www.dur.ac.uk/~des0www4/cal/dams/emba/embaf23.htm]
Parapet wall
Concrete
face slab
Dam crest
Original
ground
surface
Foot wall min
1 m thick
dowel
Min 1m
Grout curtain
Cutoff
(a)
(b) (c)
Figure 4.53 : u/s face concrete slab.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-87
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Asphaltic Concrete
provides more flexibility and tolerates larger settlement
Dam u/s slope 1.7:1 or flatter for easy placement
Good bedding layer to eliminate uplift pressures and piping if cracks
If bedding layer B zone not used , provide a 6 thick leveling layer to fill surface
voids, provide easy travel of paving machinery, and smooth bedding surface for
asphalt membrane
Penetration coat over leveling layer to bind and stabilize it
Membrane thickness 20 to 25 cm. Asphalt 8.5% by weight of dry aggregates
Standard road paver used and asphalt placed in 3 layers
Seal coat on the finished surface (for water proofing) and increased durability
Placed in 3 to 4 m (10-12) wide strip at right angle to dam axis
Paving placed on upslope pass only
Rolling operation follow placement
Smooth wheel rollers, vibratory or tandem type
Layers compacted to min of 97% density
Tight joints between adjacent strips
Transverse joints minimum and complete as hot joints
Cold joints by (a) apply tack coat (b) overlap 10-15 cm (3-6) joints (c) reheat
joint with infrared heating (no open flames) (d) compact joints by rolling after
heating.
Joints offset by 1-1.5 m (3-4) from joints of bottom layers
Formation cutoff allow easy placement
Membrane must be durable, flexible, impervious, does not creep, and resist
weathering
Membrane material must satisfy: sieve analysis, immersion + unconfined
compression test, Sustained load test, Permeability, Wave action test
Special tests may be needed as: Slope flow, Coefficient of expansion, Flexural
strength and Effect of reservoir ice
Parapet walls may be used to contain wave action
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-88
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Steel Face
Used on few dams
Performance satisfactory
Can be rapidly constructed
Can tolerate greater embankment reverts
Disadvantage-probability of corrosion
Cathodic protection on both faces of plates
Proper maintenance can made facing as permanent
Dam u/s Slopes 1.3-1.7





















Original ground surface
Backfill
Cutoff
Grout curtain
Asphalt membrane
Rockfill embankment
Figure 4.55 Asphalt concrete membrane
Original ground surface
Backfill
Cutoff min 1m
Grout curtain
Steel plate
Rockfill embankment
Figure 4.56 Steel membrane
Anchor dowel
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-89
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Steeper slopes construction difficulties
Plate anchored to embankment by steel anchor rods grouted in bedding material
Plate raised on a scaffolding, grid, bedding material placed after or during plate
construction
Plate thickness -3/8
Jointed by bolts or continuous fillet weld,
Expansion joints provided at regular interval
Coping walls can be used to retard over splash
4.26 SEISMIC DESIGN
Low seismic activity require no additional provisions
Note: No exact rules for dam design in earthquake regions.
Fact: Large d/s zone of quarried rock placed in thin layers provide maximum
stability
For Moderate seismic activity areas, provide:
- Large d/s zone of good quality rock
- D/s slope flattened to 1.7:1 in all cases
- For additional conservation u/s slope may also be flattered
- Foundation must be firm rock/blanket grouting
- Free draining cobbles/boulders/rock fragments (if compaction same as
rockfill) may be used.
- Provide trench type cutoff
- Provide thicker bedding zone
- Use better quality rock in C zone (routine is random fill of poor quality
rock)
- Limit lift thickness to max of 3 in zone D
- Use a thicker membrane on U/S.

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-90
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

REFERENCES AND BIBLIOGRAPHY

Breitenbach 2007. History of rockfill dam construction: Parts 1 and 2. @
http://www.geoengineer.org/ rockfill1.htm, rockfill2.htm (as on 16 Jun 2007)


Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-91
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

QUESTIONS
1. A homogeneous dam has following data. Total height = 80 m, Free board = 5 m, u/s
face slope = 2.5:1, d/s slope face = 2:1, Crest width = 5 m, Foundation thickness = 25
m, K of dam fill material = 5 x 10
-6
m/s, K of foundation material = 2 x 10
-7
2. The attached Figure shows section of an earthfill dam at its maximum depth showing
steady seepage phreatic line, equipotential lines, a trial slip surface. Scale: 1 block =
5x5 m.
m/s. Tail
water depth = zero. Draw seepage flow net and determine the seepage rates through
the dam and foundation. Assume seepage from dam do not enter into foundation and
vive versa. Also determine uplift pressure at base of the dam.
Dam height = 60 m, depth at normal conservation level = 55 m, U/s slope = 2:1, d/s
slope = 2:1, Core uniform width = 20 m, core height = 55 m. The material properties
are as:
Core: c = 12 KPa, = 29, average unit weight = 21 KN/m
3
, K = 3 x 10
-5
Fill: c = 5 KPa, = 33, = 19 KN/m
cm/s.
3
, K = 5 x 10
-4
Determine the factor of safety for the d/s face for steady seepage condition for the
shown slip surface by using method of slices.
cm/s.


9




1
2




1
4




1
6




1
8




2
0




2
2




2
4




2
6




2
8




3
0




3
0




3
2




3
4




3
6




3
7




3
8




3
9




4
0




4
0




4
2




4
4




4
5




4
6



















3. Repeat Q-1 by using SEEP/W program.
4. Repeat Q-2 by using SEEP/W and SLOPE/W computer programs.

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-92
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-93
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.61: Dynamic compaction, Townsville Australia.

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-94
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.62: Mangrove Creek concrete faced Rock Fill dam
(http://www.ipenz.org.nz/nzsold/NZSOLD-Newsletter-46-Text.pdf)

Figure 4.63: 125 m high Storglomvatn Rockfill dam with asphalt concrete core
(http://www.ngi.no) 125 m high RF dam with asphalt concrete core.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-95
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams



Figure 4.64:
Zoned Rockfill Dams in Norway Dams constructed of soil, of rock, or of a
combination of soil and rock are called embankment dams. Embankment dams are most
economical where the materials at the dam site can be used to construct the embankment with
little or no processing. Small embankment dams can be built of a single type of soil, which
must hold back the water and provide enough strength for stability of the embankment. Large
dams are usually zoned, with fine soils (silts or clays) at the center of the dam (the core)
to hold back the water, and sand, gravel or rockfill in the upstream and downstream parts of
the dam (the shells) to provide the strength needed for stability of the embankment.This
photo shows a cross section through a zoned rockfill dam in Norway. The yellow zones
downstream from the green core are the filter and the drain. The filter is graded to hold the
particles within the core in place, while allowing seeping water to pass freely. The drains
have high enough permeability to carry the seepage without allowing any significant pore
water pressures to develop in the downstream parts of the dam. The rockfill shells are shown
in orange. The gray zone between the drains and the shells is a transition zone, used to
make economical use of as much of the soil at the site as possible. The steep slopes indicate
that the rockfill of which the shells are constructed has a high angle of internal friction.
(http://cee.engr.ucdavis.edu/faculty/boulanger/geo_photo_album/Embankment%20dams/Zoned%20rockfill%20
dams/Zoned%20rockfill%20-%20main.html)

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-96
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.65: Mohali dam, Lesotho (http://www.trc.org.ls)

Fig 4.66: Kouris EF dam, Cyprus. (http://www.flickr.com/photos/lemessoler/2155179591/)
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-97
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Fig 4.67: Windamere Dam (69 metres high, earth and rock fill dam) on the Cudgegong
River near Mudgee. Geotechnical problems included excessive grout takes in highly fractured
rock in dam foundation. The spillway was an unlined cutting in andesite about 1 km from the
dam site and supplied the entire rock fill requirement for the construction of the dam
embankment. If a spillway had been built in the weathered sedimentary rocks at the dam site
full concrete lining would have been required.
Windamere Dam earth and rock fill embankment. The dam foundations are weathered
Devonian conglomerates, sandstones and shales. The spillway is located about 1km away
from the dam in mostly unweathered Ordovician andesite. The spillway is an unlined rock
cutting that provided all the rock fill required for the construction of the dam embankment.
The access road bridge over the spillway cutting is just visible in the upper left of the photo
http://members.optusnet.com.au/~richardw2/img/wind3.jpg

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-98
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Fig 4.68: The dam wall of the Upper Yarra Reservoir which is a rolled earthfill and rockfill
embankment and is 610 metres long and 90 metres high.
(http://www.flickr.com/photos/splatt/357903508/)



Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-1
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Chapter 4
EARTHFILL AND ROCKFILL EMBANKMENT DAMS
4.1 DEFINITION
International Commission on Large Dams (ICOLD) defined embankment dam as any
dam constructed of excavated materials placed without addition of binding material other
than those inherent in the natural material. The materials are usually obtained at or near the
dam site. An Earthfill Dam is an embankment dam, constructed primarily of compacted
earth materials, either homogeneous or zoned, and containing more than 50% of earth
granular materials. Contrary a Rockfill Dam is an embankment dam constructed of natural
rock materials, usually broken down to smaller fragments. Rockfill dam with all voids filled
by finer materials by hydraulic sluicing is usually regarded as earth-fill dam. An embankment
dam where large quantities of both granular materials (earth) and rock fragments are used is
called as Earthfill-Rockfill Dam.

Example of embankment dam, Stratos Dam, Greece (http://www.geoengineer.org)
I: EARTHFILL DAMS
4.2 GENERAL DESIGN CRITERIA:
Embankment dams are built to meet the following design criteria (Golze 1977 P-291,
Novak 19** P-59):
1. Stability: The foundation, abutments and embankments must be stable for all loading/
stress conditions during construction, and operation. Some distress can be tolerated
during construction.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-2
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

2. Control of Seepage: Seepage through embankment, foundation and abutments must
be small and not exert excessive uplift on the structure, create high exit gradients,
piping not permitted.
3. Overtopping and Free Board: Top of dam must be high enough to allow for
settlement of dam and foundation and to provide sufficient free board to prevent
waves at maximum pond level (during maximum flood, e.g. spillway design flood)
from overtopping the dam.
4. Maximum Flood Evacuation: Spillway and outlet capacity be large enough to
prevent overtopping of the dam (Spillway only, no other outlets) even when few (at
least one) spillway gate become stuck/inoperative.
5. Upstream Slope Protection: Slope of embankment and outlet works be stable under
all operational conditions (first filling, quick drawdown, steady pond etc). Cuts into
rock masses for placing spillway must be stable under earthquake conditions.
6. Outlet and Ancillary Works: Care must be taken to ensure that outlet or other
facilities constructed through the dam do not permit their perimeter with risk of soil
migration and piping. Same care is needed at embankment joints with abutments.
7. Stability against uplift under structures: Seepage under the various structures as
spillway, chute, stilling basins, power house, exert lot of uplift pressure, thus these
structure must be safe for this condition.
4.3 PLACEMENT OF FILL MATERIALS
Huge quantities of fill material of varying gradation are placed to form the
embankment. The embankment materials of a dam may be placed as a rolled fill or hydraulic
fill.
Rolled fill. The embankment material of requisite grading is transported to site by hauling
machinery, placed at specific locations in layers, rolled out by earth moving
machinery into layers of suitable thickness, watered and compacted by plain or sheep-
foot rollers to requisite density.
Hydraulic fill. The material containing all grades and sizes are thoroughly blended, mixed
with water, transported to site in suspension by pumps and pipes and discharged at the
dam edge in inward direction. The material gets deposited by sedimentation. Thus the
coarser particles get deposited near the edges and finer particles reach to the middle
section. The fill is usually not further compacted.
Semi-Hydraulic fill. The material in suspension is transported by hauling units and dumped
at the edge of the embankment. It is then washed in its final position by water jets.
Drainage of hydraulic fill. The excess water reaching inner part of dam percolates
horizontally to outer more pervious shell. Remainder water rises upward to the
surface, allowing the center of dam to consolidate and subside. The downward
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-3
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

movement of the core eventfully develops arching in the core and prevents its further
consolidation.
4.4 TYPE OF EARTHFILL DAMS
Earthfill dams can be of types as Homogeneous, Zoned and Diaphragm dam.
4.4.1 Homogeneous Dams
The dam embankment is made of a single type of material (Fig. 4.1). These include
fine-grained particles or coarse-grained materials. The materials are compacted mechanically
to form a watertight fill. The fill material is required to possess following properties

1
It must be capable of being placed and consolidated to form a homogeneous mass
without any potential of piping as paths of percolation through the fill or along its
contact with the foundation and abutments.
:It must be sufficiently impervious to provide an adequate barrier and prevent
excessive loss of water through the dam, the acceptable level being determined from
the safety of the structure and the value of the lost water.
The fill material should develop maximum practical shear strength under compaction
and maintain most of it after the filling of the reservoir.
It must not consolidate, soften or liquefy upon saturation.
Due to relatively finer materials, the slopes must be able to avoid sloughing. The u/s slope is
relatively flat to ensure safety against sloughing under rapid drawdown conditions after
prolonged high-level storage. The d/s slope must be protected to resist sloughing when
saturated to a high level by rainfall.







For a completely homogeneous embankment, the seepage will eventually emerge on
the d/s slope regardless of its flatness and the impermeability of the soil if reservoir level is
maintained for a sufficiently long time. The surface to the height of 1/3
rd

1
(@ www.dur.ac.uk/~des0www4/cal/dams/emba.htm/embaf1.htm)
of depth of the
reservoir will be eventually affected. The exit of seepage may induce sloughing of the dam
toe and consequently the dam embankment. Thus measures are included to intercept the
H/3
H
Seepage
Figure 4.1: Seepage through an earthfill homogeneous dam.
Phreatic/Seepage line
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-4
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

seepage flow before it reaches the d/s slope. Such a dam is then called as modified
homogeneous dam (Figs. 4.2 to 4.4). These measures include rockfill toe, horizontal d/s
drainage blanket, and a vertical or inclined chimney drain. These measures do not decrease
the seepage amount but makes the seepage exit safer with no danger of dam toe failure. A toe
drain (Fig. 4.5) is usually used in conjunction with these seepage control measures to
intercept the seepage flow and its disposal.
A homogeneous embankment should not be used for storage dam. A homogeneous
type of dam is applicable in localities where readily available soils show little or no variation
is permeability and soils of contrasting permeability are available only in minor amounts or at
considerably greater cost.






















Figure 4.3: Modified homogeneous dam with d/s horizontal drainage blanket.
H
Seepage
Phreatic/Seepage line
Figure 4.4: Modified homogeneous dam with a chimney drain and d/s horizontal drainage blanket.
H
Seepage
Phreatic/Seepage line
H
Seepage
Figure 4.2: Modified homogeneous dam with rockfill toe and graded filter.
Phreatic/Seepage line
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-5
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams











4.4.2 Zoned Embankment Dam
A zoned embankment dam is constructed of materials of more than two types. The
zoned dam has a central zone of impermeable materials flanked by zones of materials
considerably more pervious called shell or shoulders. The inner zone is usually called a core.
The shell materials enclose, support and protect the impervious core. The u/s shell provides
stability against rapid drawdown and d/s shall acts as drain to control the line of seepage. The
section as a whole show progressive increase in permeability from the center outwards
towards each slope. The core is flanked by one or more zones of graded filter.
The central impervious zone consists of clay and outer shell consists of sand, gravel,
cobbles or rock or mixture of these materials. If rock is used in shell, it is then called as
earthfill-rockfill dam (Tarbela, Mangla dams). The dam is considered as zoned dam only if
the horizontal width of the impervious zone at any elevation equals or exceeds the height of
the dam above that elevation, and is not less than 10 feet (Fig. 4.6). The maximum width of
the core is controlled by stability and seepage criteria and the availability of the material. The
outer shall due to coarse nature and good drainage, may have relatively steeper outer slope,
limited only by the strength of the foundation, the stability of the embankment itself and
maintenance/construction considerations. For better stability of a section, longer haulage of
materials may be preferred. Graded filters are provided on u/s and d/s sides of the core which
Rockfill toe or horizontal drainage blanket
Fine rock or
sand/gravel fill
Graded gravel or
crushed rock
Toe drain
Figure 4.5: Toe drain for use with rockfill toe or horizontal drainage blanket.
Dam d/s slope
H
U/S
Shell
CORE
D/S
Shell
Seepage
Filter
Figure 4.6: A zoned earthfill dam.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-6
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

acts as chimney drain. The d/s graded filter is connected with d/s horizontal drainage blanket
and toe drain for seepage outflow.
When a variety of soil materials are available, the choice of an earthfill dam should
always be a zoned embankment type because of its inherent advantage in reduced cost of
construction. The necessary arrangements are required to collect and dispose off any seepage
that does cross the impervious central zone.
4.4.3 Diaphragm Dam
This dam is similar to a zoned embankment dam with the exception that a thin
diaphragm of impervious material is provided to form a water barrier (Fig. 4.7). The bulk of
the embankment is constructed of pervious material (sand, gravel or rock). The position of
the diaphragm may vary from a blanket on the u/s face to a central vertical core. The
diaphragm may be made of earth/clay, Portland cement concrete, asphalt concrete or other
material. If the diaphragm material is earth, the horizontal thickness of the diaphragm at any
elevation is less than 10 feet or the height of the embankment above the corresponding
elevation of the dam (W h and W 10 ft). In some cases the diaphragm may be inclined.
Necessary arrangement for drainage of seepage flow is required. Graded filters are provided
on u/s and d/s sides of the core, which acts as chimney drain. The d/s graded filter is
connected with d/s horizontal drainage blanket and toe drain for seepage outflow.
The core may be vertical oriented or inclined. It can be placed near the u/s face, in the
center, or near the d/s face. The u/s and d/s faces of earthfill dam are protected by suitable
riprap.







A thin core dam becomes more economical for reasons as:
Unit cost of placing impervious materials may be more than the unit cost of placing
pervious materials.
The amount of embankment volume can be reduced in a thin core dam more effectively.
The construction time available and weather conditions may not permit the use of an
impervious core of large thickness.
H
U/S
Shell
C
O
R
E

D/S
Shell
Seepage
Filter
Figure 4.7: A diaphragm earthfill dam with central vertical core.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-7
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

The minimum thickness of core depends on a number of factors on:
1. the tolerable seepage loss;
2. minimum width which will allow proper construction (machinery considerations);
3. type of materials chosen for the core and shoulders;
4. design of proposed filter layers;
5. past experience of similar projects.
Vertical Core
The core is inclined vertical (Fig. 4.7) and is usually located in alignment with the
crest of the dam.
Advantages of vertical core
Higher pressure exists on the contact between core and the foundation, and will provide
more protection against the possibility of leakage along the contact.
Vertical core tends to be slightly thicker for a given quantity of impervious soil than the
thickness of the sloping core.
Criteria
Cores with width of 30 to 50% dam height prove satisfactory under diverse conditions.
Core with width of 15 to 20% (thin) if constructed adequately is satisfactory under most
condition.
Core with less than 10% used only if large leaks through the core would not cause dam
failure.







Inclined Core
The inclined core is oriented at an angle with the base of the dam. The core is located
closer to the u/s face of the dam with top of core aligned with the dam crest (Fig. 4.8).
H
U/S
Shell
C
O
R
E

D/S
Shell
Filter
Figure 4.8: A diaphragm earthfill dam with inclined core.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-8
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Advantages
1. Core can be constructed after completion of d/s portion of embankment. Especially
useful for short dry weather condition. Suitable to allow construction of core from fine
grained soils.
2. Foundation grouting can be continued while dam embankment is being placed (thus
smaller construction period).
3. Filter zones can be thin (smaller slanting width for same horizontal width) and are
easier to install.
Disadvantages
1. Location of core for deep foundation conditions cannot be determined in advance; thus
difficult to locate grout curtain.
2. Additional grouting, if required after dam completion, cannot be undertaken.
Location of Impervious Core/Diaphragm
The core is preferably located in the center of the dam embankment due to following
advantages.
1. The core is equally supported and is more stable during a sudden drawdown (if
constructed from earth).
2. Settlement of dam induces compressive stresses in the core, tending to make it more
compact.
3. There is less core volume.
4. Foundation grouting if required can be done post construction of the dam from the crest.
The choice of impermeable zone depends on stability of the core material. If it is strong to
resist cracking under load, a location near u/s is often the most economical. However, if core
material is weak, a central location is better.
[www.ferc/industries/hydropower/safety/eng-guide/chap4.pdf (embankment dam) and
/chap3.pdf (gravity dam)]
4.5 CONTROL OF SEEPAGE THROUGH EMBANKMENT
The seepage through the dam embankment is controlled by two steps: (1) minimize
the seepage rate and volumes and (2) streamline the any seepage to exit from the dam without
any damage to the embankment (safe seepage exit gradients).
1. Minimize the seepage: All the fill materials will allow some seepage through the
embankment. The impermeability of the core minimizes the seepage rate. Thus
permeability and the thickness of the core will ultimately set the seepage rate through the
embankment. Thus thick cores having minimum permeability materials will result in
smaller seepage rates.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-9
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

2. Contain and streamline the seepage: For a sustained high-level reservoir, the seepage
flow occurs through the dam section. The seepage emerges at the d/s face of homogeneous
and zoned dams. The seepage flow if unchecked can lead to severe piping, and sloughing
of the d/s slope and may ultimately lead to failure of the dam. Following arrangements are
used to contain and streamline the exit of seepage flow from the dam body.
4.5.1 Rockfill Toe and Toe Drain
The d/s toe of a homogeneous embankment is constituted of rockfill material with a
graded filter between the earthfill and rockfill pervious material. The seepage line will
converge towards the rockfill and is then exits safely across the d/s slope keeping the d/s
slope dry and safe. A graded filter is provided between the embankment fill material and the
rockfill toe to prevent migration of embankment materials into the rockfill toe. Frequently a
perforated toe drain of rockfill grade material (Fig. 4.5) is constructed near and below the
outer end of the toe to collect the seepage flow. A perforated pipe is embedded in a trench
filled with fine rock fill. The toe drain collects the seepage discharging from the embankment
and the foundation and lead it to an outfall into the river channel below.
Toe drains may be made of vitrified clay or concrete, perforated corrugated metal or
PVC pipe. Drains are placed in trenches below the ground surface to ensure effective
interception of seepage flow. Minimum depth below GS = 4 ft, maximum as required to
maintain uniform gradient. Bottom width of trench is 3-4 ft, pipe dia- 6 to 24 depending on
gradient, reach length, seepage rate. Drain pipe is surrounded by geotextile filter to prevent
clogging. Material surrounding drain must satisfy filter criteria. The fill materials in the
trench and surrounding the drain pipe include: Graded sand, Sand and gravel or selected fine
rock, and Graded gravel or crushed rock
4.5.2 Drainage Blanket
Blanket drains are provided under the base of embankment fill material and extend d/s
of impervious zone, impervious diaphragm or 1/4 to 1/3 base of the dam (Figs. 4.3 and 4.9).
The blanket drain will intercept the seepage line. Drainage blanket may contain one or more
layers of coarse filter grade materials of filter criteria to match with the materials on two sides
of the filter. The thickness of the blanket should be enough to carry the seepage flow to the
toe drain at the end of the blanket. The blanket drain may not provide full protection against
seepage over a stratification layer which moves horizontally over the layer and ultimately
reaches the downstream face.
Blanket drain: It may be a continuous layer along whole length of dam or may be intermittent
and connected with chimney drain. The length of the dram should reach to d/s edge of core or
u/s water depth for a uniform dam. In some cases it may extend under the core. Large length
of drain decreases the seepage flow path and increase seepage. The thickness varies 3 ft and
above. Material is of filter criteria. A toe drain or a drainage gallery is also provided at outer
end to collect the seepage.

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-10
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams









4.5.3 Chimney Drain
This is a vertical or inclined drain (made of graded filter) provided inside the dam
body (Figs 4.4, and 4.6 to 4.8). These are usually placed d/s of the impervious core and may
be vertical or inclined (30
o
120
o
The chimney drain can be equally useful for a homogeneous dam with a toe drain.
The dam fill placement and compaction in layers form a pseudo-layered condition where
seepage flow entering in one layer will continue in the same layer and will ultimately appear
on d/s slope facing leading to slope failure. The chimney drain will intercept the seepage
from these layers and lead safely to the toe drain (Fig. 4.4)
). The chimney drain may be composed of one or more
zones to match the gradation of the adjacent materials. The chimney drain intercepts the
seepage flow that crosses the core. It may be single graded or double graded depending upon
gradation of fill materials on the two sides of the chimney drain. Chimney drain is used in
conjunction with horizontal drainage blanket. Chimney drain is connected to blanket drain at
bottom or into a floor channel of drainage gallery.
4.6 FILTER CRITERIA
The filter material is placed in toe, blanket or chimney drains and its materials must
match with the gradation of the adjacent materials to ensure stability of the filter and adjacent
materials. The filter must have large flow capacity to transmit intercepted seepage flow out of
the dam body. Following criteria follows. D refers to the size of filter material (having larger
size) and d refers to the size of base (adjacent) materials having smaller size. (Sherard P-83,
USBR 2001, p-235).
Standard sieve set is used to determine the particle size gradation of fill and filter
materials. The sieve sizes are as under.
# mm # mm # mm # mm # mm
3 6.4 10 2.0 25 0.71 60 0.25 200 0.074
4 4.8 12 1.7 30 0.59 70 0.21 270 0.053
5 4.0 16 1.19 35 0.50 100 0.149 300 0.050
6 3.4 18 1.00 40 0.42 140 0.105 325 0.044
8 2.38 20 0.84 50 0.297 170 0.088 400 0.037
Dam foundation material
(fine to coarse grained)
EARTHFILL
Dam d/s slope
Fine graded filter
Coarse graded filter
Figure 4.9: D/s horizontal drainage blanket and toe drain.
Toe drain
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-11
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

The fill and filter material are characterized by Uniformity Coefficient C
U
= d
60
/d
10
and
Coefficient of Curvature as: C
C
= d
30
2
/[d
60
xd
10
] and Self-Filtering Critera C
SF
=
d
50
2
/[d
60
xd
10
1. D
]. The filter criteria is as under:
15
/d
15
2. D
= 5 to 40
15
/d
85
3. D
5 [This is to prevent migration of fines.]
85
4. Gradation curve of filter material be parallel to gradation curve of base material
(similar C
/drain opening 2 [for toe drain]
U
5. If base material contains gravel, then filter is designed on the basis of gradation curve
of the portion of the material finer than 1 sieve.
as for base material).
6. Filter should contain not more than 5% of fines passing # 200 sieves and the fines, if
any, should be cohesionless.
7. Self filtering is achieved if d
15 coarser
5 d
An alternate filter criteria for transition zone is described as under.
85 finer

* D
15
/d
15
* D
> 4-5 For sufficient permeability
15
/d
85
* D
< 4-5 To prevent migration of fines
50
/d
50
* D
< 25 To prevent migration of fines
60
/D
10
The filter may have one zone/layer or more than one zone between the adjacent fill
materials e.g. clay core and rockfill. Single or double filter layers between fine and course fill
are selected to ensure filter criteria on both sides of the filter layer. For single zone/layer filter
of Fig. 4.10(a) the filter F1 must comply both for the gradation of clay core on one side and
the gradation of rockfill on the other side. Considering the filter criteria between clay core
and filter F1 the D will refer to gradation of filter F1 and d will refer to gradation of clay
core. Considering the filter criteria between filter F1 and the rockfill the D will refer to
gradation of rockfill and d will refer to gradation of filter F1. For double zone/layer filters of
Fig. 4.10(b) the filter F2 abutting the coarser fill material (rockfill) will be coarse than filter
F1 abutting the finer fill material (clay core). The filter F1 must comply both for the
gradation of clay core on one side and the gradation of filter F2 on the other side. Similarly
the filter F2 must comply both for gradation of filter F1 on one side and the rockfill gradation
on the other side. In exceptional cases three layers/zones of filter may become necessary to
fully meet the filter criterion between fine and coarse fill materials.
< 20 For well graded filter to prevent segregation of filter
Dimensions of Filter Layer
Filter zone width and thickness is selected from point of view of its carrying capacity after
few years (when some settlement, particle rearrangement had occurred and some fines may
have settled) and its constructability.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-12
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Minimum thickness is one which can be constructed without danger of gaps or
areas of segregated materials.
Horizontal filter layers can be thin, as 6 for sand and 12 for gravel but thicker
layers are preferred.
Chimney drains or transition zones min horizontal width of the filter zone should
be 8-10 ft, 10-12 ft preferable to enable placement, handling and some
compaction.
For cost reasons or limited filter materials, 3-5 ft wide zones may be used, but
require more supervision and hand labor for good construction.










Example (USBR 2000, p-236)
Given: d
15
= 0.006 mm, d
85
D
= 0.10 mm, pipe openings = inches.
15
D
lower = 5 * 0.006 = 0.03 mm (1) [criteria 1]
15
D
upper = 40 * 0.006 = 0.24 mm (2) [criteria 1]
15
From eq 2 and 3 select smaller size, D
5 * 0.10 = 0.50 mm (3) [criteria 2]
15
upper = 0.24 mm; Average D
15
Draw filter gradation line parallel to base material gradation curve and read D
= 0.14 mm.
85
D
= 2.4 mm.
(4)
85
As D
2 * 0.5 1 (5) [criteria 3]
85
from eq (4) is smaller than from eq (5), thus a single filter layer will not work. Adopt
above criteria for 1
st
layer F1 [D
15
= 0.14 mm, D
85
= 2.4 mm] and Work for 2
nd
D
layer F2.
15
D
lower = 5 * 0.14 = 0.70 mm (6) [criteria 1]
15
upper = 40 * 0.14 = 5.6 mm (7) [criteria 1]
Clay core
Earthfill
F
i
l
t
e
r

F
1

F
i
l
t
e
r

F
2

Figure 4.10.1 Single or double zone/layer filter between clay core and gravel / coarse fill.
Clay core
Earthfill
F
i
l
t
e
r

F
1

(a) single filter zone
(b) double filter zones
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-13
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

D
15
5 * 0.24 = 12 mm (8) [criteria 2]

Figure 4.10.2: Mangla dam raising project showing core, and u/s and d/s double filter layers.

Core F1
F2 F1
F2
U/s fill
D/s fill
F1 F2
CORE
D/s fill
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-14
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Figure 4.10.3: Mangla dam raising project showing core, and double filter layers.

Constriction of chimney filter, Mangla dam raising project.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-15
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


From eq 7 and 8 select smaller size, D
15
upper = 5.6 mm; Average D
15
Draw filter gradation line parallel to base material gradation curve and read D
= 4.0 mm.
85
D
= 50 mm. (9)
85
Select D
2 * 0.5 1 (10) [criteria 3]
85
from eq 9 and 10 as 50 mm. Then F2 = [D
15
= 4.0 mm, D
85
Dimensions and Permeability of Toe/Blanket/Chimney Drains
= 50 mm.
The dimension and permeability of the drain must be adequate to carry away the
anticipated flow with an ample margin of safety for unexpected leaks. For a relatively
impermeable foundation, then the expected leakage would be low.
A drain should be constructed of material with a coefficient of permeability of at least
10 to 100 times greater than the average embankment material.
Drain material is usually a processed material. Pit run borrow is usually too dirty (i.e.
have large fines). Drain materials must have following grading.
Particle size % passing by weight
1 90 100
45 75
# 4 (4.8 mm) 30 - 45
# 50 (0.297 mm) 4 - 10
# 100 (0.149 mm) 1 - 3
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-16
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

# 200 (0.074 mm) 0 - 2
Gradation should be such that it will prevent particles of soil from the adjacent location from
entering the filter and clogging it.
4.7 FOUNDATION DESIGN
Foundation includes both valley floor and the abutments. Foundation must ensure
following design requirements
1. It provides support for the embankment under all conditions of saturation and
loading.
2. It provides sufficient resistance to seepage to prevent excessive loss of water.
Foundation is not actually designed but treatments are provided in design to ensure
that all essential requirements are met.
No two foundations exactly alike, each presents its own separate and distinct
problems. Foundation improvements be adopted to local conditions.
40% dam failures attributed to failure of the foundation.
Judgment on the basis of foundation exploration and past experiences.
Foundation may be of rock, coarse grained material (sand, gravel), or fine grained
material (silt and clay)
Infinite variations in the combinations (materials), structural arrangements and
physical characteristics of the constituent materials.
Roughly stratified.
For hard foundation minimum treatment include stripping of foundation area to
remove sand, topsoil, and other unsuitable materials.
A key trench is provided to improve bonding of impervious zone of embankment to
the foundation.
4.8 ROCK FOUNDATIONS
Most rock foundations have adequate physical strength. However weathering near the
surface make is weaker and prone to excessive seepage flows. Some treatments may be done
to improve strength and/or to reduce seepage potential. The treatments includes: (see detail in
chapter 3 on Geology): 1. Stripping, 2. Strengthening of weak zones, 3. Grouting to make it
water tight. Rock foundations are very well suited for earthfill and rockfill dams.
4.9 SAND GRAVEL FOUNDATIONS
4.9.1 Characteristics
Gravel/sand foundation has enough bearing/shear strength the support small to
medium earthfill and rockfill dams.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-17
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

However these foundations are very conducive to seepage and need suitable
treatment for seepage and uplift pressure control.
These materials usually are laid over impervious geological foundation at some
depth below the surface.
Usually stratified heterogeneous mixture
Excessive under seepage could lead to: Large seepage uplift pressures and Dam
failure due to piping (if fine sand is present in large quantities).
Clean sand (fine and uniform) of low density is inherently unstable due to its loose
structure and is liable to collapse under dynamic load as for earthquake.
Vibrations/shock as for an earthquake tremor causes re-adjustment of grains into a
dense structure. Pore water pressure increases suddenly (due to slow drainage) and
foundation behaves as liquid and results in sudden liquification.
Cohesionless sands of low relative density (< 50%) are suspect to failure.
4.9.2 Treatment of Foundation
The foundation is treated to minimize the seepage through the foundation and reduce
uplift pressures for d/s part. Various foundation treatments include positive cut-off, partial
cutoff, sheet pile, cement bound curtain, concrete wall, slurry trench, grouting, etc. These are
described below.










4.9.2.1 Positive Cut-off Trenches:
Rolled earth/clay is filled and compacted in a trench excavated to the impermeable
barrier / underlying hard bed rock (Fig. 4.11a). The compacted clay forms an impermeable
barrier to the seepage flow. The cutoff depth varies as 50 to 150 ft with 1:1 or flatter side
slopes. It is located in continuation of the embankment core u/s from centerline of dam crest,
but not beyond where cover of core becomes small. It is made of usually same material as is
H
U/S
Shell
CORE
D/S
Shell
Figure 4.11a: A positive cutoff for earthfill dam.
Gravel sand foundation
Bed rock
Overburden
River
bottom
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-18
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

suitable for dam core. Wider trench base is adopted for dams with large depth. For deeper
trench smaller base may be used as seepage force at foundation contact decrease with
increase in depth. Grouting of upper part of weathered/fractured bed rock, if required.
Generally top width as w = h d. A minimum bottom width 20 ft to allow operating
machinery. Trench below water table will require dewatering.
4.9.9.2 Partial Cutoff
The cutoff penetrates only partially into the foundation (Fig. 4.11b).
Suitable if a low K layer of considerable thickness found above the bed rock. This
layer must be aerially extensive. Thus seepage from upper more pervious layer is
intercepted.
Partial barrier be at least 95% deep to have any appreciable reduction in seepage.
Partial seepage barrier may be effective at sites where average permeability of
foundation decreases with depth.
For deep foundations the upper part is sealed off against seepage by providing a
partial cutoff and lower part may be sealed by providing sheet piling or grouting
etc below and in continuation of the partial cutoff.
In all cases a minimum partial cutoff of 6-10 ft should be provided. This trench
also provided better understanding of the subsoil conditions.











4.9.2.3 Sheet Piling Cutoff
Steel sheet pile may be driven into soft alluvium.
Depth to bed rock.
Used in combination with partial cutoff to seal lower horizons.
H
U/S
Shell
CORE
D/S
Shell
Figure 4.11b: A partial cutoff for earthfill dam.
Deep gravel sand foundation
Bed rock
Sheet piling or grouting etc
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-19
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Not suitable for cobbles/boulders as these formations cause misalignment/ open
joints, interlock liable to tear-off, pile wander off, pile twisting making an
ineffective barrier.
Twin steel sections may be used with interior filled with cement grout.
Not completely water tight
80-90% effective if good work
Poor workmanship, efficiency less than 50%.
Seepage resistance offered by sheet pile equals 30-40 ft length of soil; field tests
show resistance equivalent of 400-2000 ft. The effectiveness increase with time
due to filling of gap by sediments, encrustation etc.

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-20
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.12a: Sheet pile installation at Taunsa Barrage. (L) Secondary weir, (R) Old pile
exposed. Note the pile section and the interlocking between the pile sheets.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-21
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.12b: Taunsa Barrage: Sheet pile interlocking and embedding in concrete.

Figure 4.12c: Taunsa Barrage: Sheet pile installation by vibroinstaller.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-22
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.12d: Taunsa Barrage: Sheet pile installation by vibroinstaller.

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-23
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.12e: Taunsa Barrage second weir: U/s, mid and d/s sheet pile rows.

4.9.2.4 Cement Bound Curtain Cutoff
In places piles are cast by mixing cement with foundation material (Fig. 4.13).
Curtin constructed by successive overlapping individual piles.
Each pile consist of column of sand intimately mixed with mortar to form a pile
like structure
Hole drilled, Mortar injected through hollow rotating pipe with mixer head at
bottom.
May be reinforced.





U/s Mid
D/s
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-24
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams












4.9.2.5 Concrete Wall
RCC wall build down to
the bed rock provide
positive cutoff.
Wall width 5 ft or more
Dewatering and shoring
bracing/sheeting required.
High in cost and
challenging in construction
RCC or PCC
Depths 150-200 ft in past
4.9.2.6 Slurry Trench
Trench excavated by drag
lines 5 wide or less.
Depth to impervious layer
rock surface.
Excavated material stock
piled in windrows.
Trench filled with
bentonite mud slurry
(slurry density > water
density) which prevent
Plan
Section
Figure 4.13 Cement bound curtain cutoff.
River level
Bed rock level
Pictorial
Figure 4.14 Sequential operations in the
construction of a slurry trench. (Source
USBR 2001, p-228).
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-25
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

walls from caving in. Slurry weighs more than water.
Mud slurry level above water table to keep trench sides stabilized.
Trench bottom cleared with clamshell bucket and air lift pumps
Bentonite coated excavated slurry material are further blended with 15-20% of
natural silt.
Mixture dumped on one end of trench, displacing the slurry until backfilling
complete.
Completed slurry trench in a very soft condition for many months after
construction, with consistency like a stiff butter.
Need more care if cobbles, boulders, large blocks in deeper locations.
The upper weathered/fractured part of the bed rock grouted after completion of the
slurry trench.
4.9.2.7 Grouting Alluvial Deposits
Cement grouts not injected uniformly in alluvial deposits except for coarse
material
Chemical grout can be injected in sand, but expensive
Primary difficulty of keeping hole open with casing, impossibility of using
packers, and lack of technique ensuring uniform penetration of grout
Special techniques developed for grouting in alluvium as packers can not be used
along with casing.
Coarse materials grouted successfully
Usually several rows of grout holes to increase effectiveness.
Outer rows grouted with cement and cement-clay grouts, inner rows with
chemical grout.
Results of grouting difficult to evaluate.
4.9.2.8 Horizontal U/s Impervious Blanket [Sherard p-312, Fig 6.3.2]
If construction of complete seepage barrier for a dam on pervious foundation is not
practicable, then under seepage may be reduced by increasing the width of the base of
impervious section by a horizontal impervious blanket, which is connected to the dam core.
The seepage is reduced due to lengthening of seepage path. This also reduces the d/s pore
water pressure and thus increase stability. The u/s impervious blanket is constructed of
impervious material extending u/s of the dam face toe/ heel and connected with impervious
core of the dam embankment (Fig. 4.15).
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-26
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

These may be used in conjunction with partial cutoff located at u/s end or any
other location (e.g. Tarbela, Khanpur dam).
Blanket is generally used for a stream channel or valley floor of sand and gravel.
This may also be required for portions of abutments to reduce seepage through the
abutments.
Blanket starts from core of the dam and extends about 400-500 m, upstream.
Blanket thickness 10% of dam height (minimum 10 feet) at dam face to minimum
3 ft at outer end.
Blanket protected from erosion by 2-3 ft thick riprap over gravel bedding.
Areas with natural clay blanket if any are cleared of trees/vegetation, defective
places repaired, and entire surface rolled to seal root holes.
No stripping of area us/ of dam to obtain fine construction material for dam
construction (particularly if no +ve cutoff).
Length of blanket governed by desired reduction in seepage flow.
Blanket may not eliminate piping in naturally stratified soils as high pressures
may exist in one or more strata at d/s toe of the dam.
Tarbella dam has 5700 ft long u/s impervious blanket. Its thickness varies from 42
ft at dam u/s toe to 10 ft at the outer end.










Figure 4.15a: U/s horizontal impermeable barrier.
U/s impermeable
barrier / blanket
Protective gravel/
riprap layer
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-27
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.15b: Mangla dam raising: u/s impervious blanket with top gravel layer for
protection in area of Sukhian dike.

Figure 4.15c: Mangla dam raising: Compaction of impervious blanket by sheep foot rollers
at optimum moisture content.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-28
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

4.9.2.9 Horizontal d/s impervious blanket
Likewise u/s blanket, impermeable horizontal blanket may also be provided at d/s of
dam to lengthen seepage path and reduce seepage (Fig. 4.16). However due to its position at
d/s of dam it is subjected to excessive uplift pressures. Thus the d/s blanket must be designed
to resist uplift pressure. This is done by providing berm of random fill material to add weight
over the impermeable layer. The d/s drainage blanket may be provided above the
impermeable blanket. D/s impervious blanket is not very often used.





4.9.3 Seepage through Foundation
4.9.3.1 Seepage rate
Under seepage through the foundation is determined by Darcys law
Q = K I A I = h/L
I = Average hydraulic gradient over the flow length.
L = length of seepage path = base of impervious bottom or core
h = head difference between reservoir water level and the d/s drain water level.
A = 1 x depth of foundation
K = average permeability for all layers (horizontal K)








The Darcy formula is quite valid when depth of the foundation (d) is small in
comparison to the flow length L. For other conditions a flow net should be drawn to
Random fill to counteract
uplift pressure. Height=H/2
D/s impermeable blanket
Figure 4.16 D/s impervious blanket.
Figure 4.17 Seepage force components. [USBR p-221]
L
d
Seepage exit
area ~ 2-3 d
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-29
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

determine the seepage flow rate. The seepage flow emerges d/s of the dam over a length 2-3 d
depending on the permeability and stratification/ layering of the foundation.
4.9.3.2 Seepage Forces and Piping
The flow of water through pervious foundation produces seepage force due to
friction of percolating water with the walls of the pores.
Seepage force proportional to flow velocity.
Small downward force at entry over large u/s area. This increases submerged
weight of soil.
Under the dam flow velocity increases due to reduced flow area.
At d/s toe of dam, the seepage force is upward reducing effective weight of the
soil.
If upward force exceeds soil weight, the soil would be floated out (boils
formation).
The particle erosion progress backward along the flow line until a continuous pipe
like opening is formed (usually irregular and tortuous) to reservoir.
Piping allows rapid escape of water.
It can lead to dam failure due to foundation heaving.
Excessive seepage results in blow out / heave at d/s of dam.
Piping failure also called as failure by heave or internal/subsurface erosion.
Magnitude and distribution of seepage forces by flow net analysis (this requires
considerable experience to draw flow net).
Grain size and gradation of the foundation materials has an important bearing on
the piping failure.
Piping failure takes places after the dam has been in service for some time.
Piping takes places along minor geological weaknesses.
Piping can be completely and reliably prevented by controlling the under seepage
such as (Sherard P-313):
i. Exist velocities are not high.
ii. Water discharges through adequate thickness of progressively coarser soils
which meets gradation requirements of filter.
Line of creep- shortest path that a particle of water has to travel in seepage under
the dam.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-30
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Creep ratio i.e. the ratio of length of creep to the pressure head loss (CR = L/h),
this is inverse of the average hydraulic gradient.
Weighted creep ratio is for length of line of creep computed as sum of the vertical
components of the shortest seepage path plus one-third of the length of the
horizontal seepage path. This is used for stratified soils.
Criterion for piping potential on the basis of weighted creep ratio as function of
foundation soil type.
Creep ratio. Minimum 3 for gravel/boulder foundation
Minimum 8 for very fine sands
This is to be used as guide to judgment but not as a design criteria.
Valid if no graded filter provided at d/s of dam (graded filter reduces flow length).
The best plan is to provide drainage blanket of graded filter under d/s section of
the dam.
Pressure relief wells placed near d/s toe of dam shall be useful to intercept the
seepage and this reduces uplift pressures.
4.9.3.3 Pressure Relief Wells
Relief wells are to ease out and reduce pressure of the seeping water under the
foundation of an earth dam.
These has disadvantages as:
a. These decrease the length of average seepage path and cause to increase the
quantity of under seepage.
b. These require frequent inspection and maintenance, replacement.
c. The pressure head is lowered to a value nearly equal to the elevation of top (or
discharge level) of the well.
d. Well may discharge into a delivery pipe, a drainage ditch and water is carried
back to river section.
e. Wells to be closely spaced (10 to 25 ft) to minimize pressure build up in
between. Spacing based on judgment.
f. Additional wells be installed in between or in d/s row subsequently, if needed.
g. Wells penetrate more than 50% depth of foundation.
h. Screen is placed in center of hole and outer annular spaced filled with suitable
gravel pack as per filter criteria. Usually a single pack is used and screen
opening is designed to match the selected filter material.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-31
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

i. Wells are developed to improve efficiency.
j. Pressure relief wells are very helpful to relieve seepage pressure when lower
pervious foundation material is overlain by otherwise natural impervious
stratum (no danger of piping, blow out).
k. Depth of wells equal to height of dam (or depth of bed rock) are most
satisfactory.
l. Pressure relief wells lower uplift pressure but enhance seepage flow rate.




















4.9.3.4 Deep toe drain
A toe drain is often provided to collect seepage flow occurring through the drainage
blanket. This is generally a shallow ditch filled with gravel/sand material. The toe drain also
intercepts the seepage flow through the dam foundation. Providing a deeper toe drain can
considerably enhance the interception of foundation seepage. A graded filter zone is provided
Bed rock
Drainage ditch
Pressure relief well
Seepage flow
Figure 4.17 Pressure relief well.
Well details
Well head details
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-32
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

between the foundation and toe drain fill to stop migration of fines from the foundation. The
deep toe drain does not significantly alter the seepage path length and thus seepage rate is not
very much affected.
4.9.4 Sand Gravel Foundation Design
The design criteria require control of seepage flow through the foundation and
abutments (no internal erosion, no sloughing in area where seepage emerges). The pervious
foundation may be either exposed or covered at the surface. The pervious foundation may be
homogeneous or stratified. Stratification influence foundation treatment method.
4.9.4.1 Case I: Exposed Foundation
The sand gravel foundation is open at the surface. The foundation may be shallow,
medium or deep.
A: Shallow Foundation
Provide a positive (complete) cutoff to bedrock.
Grouting of bedrock, if needed.
Horizontal drainage blanket not necessary if shallow pervious foundation can act
as filter and provide adequate drainage.
Provide drainage blanket of filter criteria if:
a. embankment is homogeneous or d/s shell is rockfill
b. perviousness of foundation is questionable.
c. Piping potential exist, either from embankment to foundation or from
foundation to embankment zone (at d/s part).
d. Foundation is stratified.
If rockfill at d/s portion of dam, provide DB from d/s slope to the impervious
zone/core.
It positive cutoff not practical due to lack of materials, short construction season,
wet climate, high dewatering cost, then other methods of cutoff be used.
B: Intermediate Depth Foundation
Positive cutoff may be less economical
Provide other methods of cutoff (sheet pile, slurry trench etc).
Provide minimum impervious zone/core B 1:1 u/s slope and 1:1 d/s slope (core
B is described in a later section).
Provide drainage blanket of filter grade if i) overlying zone is impervious or ii)
overlying zone is rockfill, iii) piping potential is present
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-33
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Provide key trench
C: Deep Depth Foundation
Foundation too deep for a positive cutoff
Provide u/s impermeable blanket in continuation of impermeable core.
Minimum core B
Provide key trench
At d/s of embankment, provide adequate thickness of previous or impervious
(random fill) materials (berm) (Fig. 4.16) to improve stability against high uplift
pressures.
Provide filter grade drainage blanket for d/s rock or imp fill against piping hazard.
Provide toe drains
For foundations of high K, which cause extensive seepage, ponding and sand
boils, then provide drainage trenches, pressure relief wells, extension of d/s toe of
dam or blanket on d/s area.
For deep stratified layers, provide partial cutoff and u/s blanket.
Some seepage inadvertent.
4.9.4.2 Case-II: Covered Pervious Foundation
The gravel/sand foundation is covered by some impervious layer. There are three (3)
conditions:
A: Top impervious layer thickness 3 ft or less
Layer usually ineffective as an impervious blanket. Design the foundation as
exposed foundation.
Excavate/remove the foundation material to bottom bed rock layer.
B: Thickness of top impervious layer more than 3 ft, but less than dam height h.
Provide drainage trenches (of depth as much as to top of lower pervious layer) at
d/s of dam or pressure relief wells to relieve uplift pressure.
May act as u/s impervious blanket depending on thickness, continuity,
imperviousness, u/s distance to natural loose deposits
Need to compact with heavy roller.
Horizontal drainage blanket also provided if embankment is homogeneous, or
permeability of d/s zone questionable of length reaching to base of imp zone
(Z+5) if d/s slope of core greater that 1
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-34
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

C: Thickness of impervious layer greater than dam reservoir head.
No major problems for seepage or seepage forces. No treatment is needed for
seepage control.
4.10 FINE GRAINED (SILT, CLAY) FOUNDATIONS [USBR p-246]
4.10.1 Characteristics
Foundation of fine grained soil (silt, clay) are sufficient impermeable and thus no
danger of under seepage and piping
Main problem is stability against consolidation and shear failure due to low
bearing/shear strength
Characteristics depend on location of water table, and compactness of soil
State of compactness determined by standard penetration test (soil below water
table) and by density-in-place test (for dry soils above water table)
Weak soils need to be treated for improving strength (by improving density)
4.10.1.1 Saturated soils
Determine nature of consolidation as normally consolidated or over consolidated
by analyzing the weight to which the soils had been exposed in geologic past.
Saturated impervious sands (dirty sands - sands having good amounts of fines)
also act as fine grained soils
Ability to resist shear stress (due to embankment weight) may be determined from
soil group.
Relative density for cohesionless soils D
r
= (e
max
-e)/(e
max
-e
min
For cohesive soils relative consistency C
) is related to
strength.
r
[C
r
= (LL-W)/(LL-PL)] = (e
LL
-
e
w
)/(e
LL
-e
PL
At C
) is also related to strength LL = liquid limit, PL = plastic limit, W =
water content.
r
= 0 (W = LL), cohesive strength of all remolded soils C
LL
0.2 lb/sq in and
shear strength S
LL
= 0.2 + tan
s
. The
s
At W = PL, cohesive strength varies considerably; is obtained from triaxial test
on samples compacted at proctor maximum dry density.
is obtained by slow shear test on
saturated soil (drainage permitted, pore water pressure zero) tan about 0.5
Treatments:
The shear strength can be increased on
i. Remove the soil of low shear strength.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-35
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

ii. Provide drainage of foundation to permit settlement on drainage and increase
of strength during construction.
iii. To reduce the magnitude of the average shear stress along the potential surface
of sliding by flattening the slopes of the embankment.
a. Removal of soft foundation is practicable and thin layers of soft soil
over lying firm layers are excavated.
b. Vertical drains may be provided to facilitate consolidation. This is
practical for low embankments only e.g. under highway (non-hydraulic
structures) not practical for dams.
c. Flattening of slopes lengthen the surface of sliding, decreases average
shear stress along the path and increase factor of safety against sliding
(Fig. 4.18).






4.10.1.2Relatively Dry Foundations
These soils exhibit large strength at its present dryness
The relative density of the material indicates the potential/danger of soil on
compression
Many soils will undergo quick and sudden volume reduction on wetting/saturating
on reservoir filling (Fig. 4.18).
Dense soils which will undergo small compaction on loading and wetting may be
used as foundation for dams.
Pre-wetting of soil before loading improves its strength on loading.
Large compaction and could cause serious rupture/weak section for dam cone
materials and consequent dam failure
Drainage must be assured by an underlying pervious layer or by a vertical
drainage.


h/2
h
Figure 4.18: Increasing base contact area for stability against shear, sliding.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-36
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams









4.10.2 Treatment/Improvements of Fine Grained Foundation
Foundation of dams can be improved by: 1) Pre-consolidation, 2) Densification of
cohesionless soils, and 3) Dynamic compaction
Pre-consolidation
Useful in compressible soils
Done by applying artificial surcharge such a soil removed from stripping and
scaling of abutments may be piled up
Allow time for water to drain
For rapid rate (1-2 months for 50% consolidation) piling of random weight is
useful.
For slow rate soils, dam weight is used to consolidate the soil. This requires slow
construction rate and providing drainage. Longer time periods (1-2 years for 50%
consolidation) are necessary.
Densification of Cohesionless Soils
This is carried out using shock and vibration. Vibrofloatation is used to improve poor
foundation. This can reduce settlement as much as 50% with substantially increased shearing
strength. Vibrations convert loosely packed soils into a denser soil.
Vibroflat can be used to penetrate the soil and operate below the water table. Best
results are obtained in coarse sands which can contain little or no silt or clay.
Dynamic Compaction
This is repeated application of very high intensity impacts to the surface. This
improves the soil mechanical properties. Compaction is done by dropping a weight, typically
10-20 tones from heights of 10-20 meters at regular interval across the surface. Several
tamping/passes may be made at the site. Each imprint is backfilled after tamping. In finer
soils increased pore water pressure must be allowed to dissipate between passes, which may
take several weeks.
Stress
S
t
r
a
i
n


Unconsolidated dry sample
Unconsolidated wet sample
Preconsolidated dry sample
Preconsolidated wet sample
Figure 4.19: Consolidation of wet/dry soils.
Sudden consolidation
of dry soil on wetting
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-37
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

4.10.3 Fine Grained Foundation Design
Saturated Foundation
Recommendation according to soil group on USBR P-251
Add stabilizing fill (u/s + d/s) to embankment designed for a stable foundation
(Fig. 4.18).
Slopes according to strength of foundation material as determined by penetration
test, consistency and dam height.
Suitable for small dams only





Dry Foundation
Design depend on potential to volume change on wetting
If potential less, design as for saturated soil
Else pre-densify the soil before construction and later design as for saturated
dense soils.
4.11 EMBANKMENT SECTION DESIGN
This defines the crest design, u/s and d/s slopes of impermeable core, the shoulder fill,
the slope protection, etc.
4.11.1 Crest Design
Crest width W
The width W of the crest is governed by height of dam, importance of structure,
width of highway, construction procedure, access required either during
construction or as a permanent feature.
Japanese code W (m) = 3.6 H
1/3
Special widening may be necessary to provide a
highway or safeguard against freak waves etc. This
widening could be done by steepening face slope in
3. (Thomas p-384). These are seismic active
areas)
the upper reaches of dam.
Top crest width should not be less than 30.
Figure 4.19b
h/2
h
3:1 or flatter
Random fill
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-38
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

The top width (m) is taken as
W = h/5 + 3 low dams (Punmia P. 365)
W = 0.55 h + 0.2 h h< 30 m
W = 1.65 (h+1.5)
1/3
Crest width of dams in Pakistan are: Hub dam = 28 ft, Mangla dam = 40 ft, Khanpur
dam= 35 ft, Tarbella dam = 40 ft, Simly dam = 35 ft, Bolan dam = 40 ft.
h>30 m (USBR 2001)
For ease of construction with power equipment, the crest width should not be less
than 12 ft. Roadway across the dam set the width.
Sherard p-413: For earthquake area, top of dam is subjected to worst damage and can
vibrate with greater amplitude than the base. Thus it is advisable to make dam top thicker by
increasing crest width or using flatter slopes near top. Also that if any crack develops, the
longer seepage path causes less seepage and increases dam safety.
Surface Drainage
Surface drainage of crust be provided by a crown of at least 3, or by sloping towards
the upstream floor. For wider crest 2% slope is adequate.
Surfacing
Crest surface should be protected against damage from wave splash, rainfall, wind,
frost and traffic wear. A layer of fine rock or gravely material of 4 inches minimum thickness
be provided. If a highway is carried across the dam, then crest width and surfacing must
conform to highway codes.
Safety Requirements
Crest should be made safe by providing metallic or concrete guard rails on both
shoulders of the crest. For minor dam, pillars at 25ft spacing or large boulders placed at
intervals along the crest may be provided. Guard rails be at least 2
1/2
Camber
ft from crest edge and be
well supported.
The crest elevation is increased towards center of the dam by an amount equal to
future consolidation of dam foundation and embankment after completion of the construction.
Selection of amount of camber is somewhat arbitrary. It is provided to ensure that some
residual camber will remain after settlement and consolidation. This improves the appearance
of the dam. The camber is provided by increasing the u/s and d/s slopes near the crest of the
dam. The camber is not accounted in stability calculations. For non-compressible
foundations, camber of about 1% of dam height is provided. Several feet (often 8 to 10 ft) of
camber may be needed for dams constructed on foundations expected to settle.

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-39
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams











4.11.2 Embankment Slopes
Embankment slopes are designed to ensure strength, stability and economy of
construction: Flat slopes, more cost, more stability/strength; Steeper, lower costs, stability or
strength. Embankments are constructed from infinite conditions of soil materials with varying
size, gradation, stress-strain relationship, and shear strength (USBR 2001, p-254).
The procedure for designing a cross-section of earthfill dam consists largely of
designing to the slopes and characteristics of existing successful dams, making analytical and
experimental studies of unusual conditions and controlling closely selection and placement of
embankment materials. Except small variation in specific design, radical innovation are
avoided. Any fundamental changes in design concepts are adopted gradually as more
practical experience is gathered. This practice is being overly cautious, but probable extent of
loss of property and life in the event of failure of a constructed dam provide ample
justification for these conservative procedures. Whereas design of large dam can be made
increasingly secure by laboratory test of materials, the design of small dams is heavily
followed on the basis of successful structures and past experiences.
Embankment slopes may be continuous or discontinuous. Embankment may have a
single slope over whole height, or multiple slopes may be provided over different sections of
the depth. The slope discontinuity or change in slope may be with or without a berm.
The u/s and d/s slopes of the embankment and core are selected from general
guidelines, experiences in the light of foundation materials and materials available for
construction. The seepage analysis and stability of the selected dam section is carried out and
dam section may be acceptable if factor of safety for the dam under different construction and
operation conditions are found satisfactory. Alternate dam sections are evaluated for material
needs/crest and factor of safety and that dam section is adopted which provide higher factor
of safety at lowest costs. Stability of the shape is analyzed under static loads as well as under
seismic conditions.
Dam crest design level
Construction level
Camber ~ 4

Camber
Figure 4.20 Camber for the dam crest.
W
ELEVATION
X-SECTION
1.75:1
2:1
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-40
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Except where there is surplus of material available from required excavations, the
most economical dam is obtained with the minimum volume and therefore most steep slopes
consistent with the dam stability (Sherard p-48). The allowable steepness depends on the
internal zoning and on strength of foundations and the embankment material. Crest length
and pace of construction may also affect the slope selection. Use of excavated material as
random fill may allow flatter slopes. The random fill material may be placed (Fig. 4.21) at
bottom of u/s face to eliminate slope protection, at d/s face as toe support to improve
stability; it may be buried inside the supporting shells, or if it contains coarse materials it may
be used as filter zones to the core. If random fill is impermeable but with poor stability, it
may be buried inside the impervious core. (Also see USBR p-260 fig. 149)
The strength of foundation is also affects the dam face slopes: Weak foundation
average slope 2:1 to 4:1; Strong foundation steeper slope 1.5:1 to 3:1. The height of dam
also affect slope selection. For homogeneous materials dams of fine core: Short height
steeper slope, Higher dams flatter slope. The internal zoning permit steeper slopes. For thin
clay core slopes are independent of height. For rockfill dam with thin u/s core, the d/s slope is
equal to natural angle of repose of rockfill material (1.7:1 rounded stream gravel, 1.2:1
angular quarried rock, 1:1 thin layers of well compacted quarried rock. Central core d/s 1.6
1.8. The slopes may be single or multiple slope. Slopes may be continuous or discontinuous
with or without intervening berm.
Slopes are set as following:
Dams located in narrow rock-walled canyons can be constructed with some what
steeper slopes than otherwise, because of added stability given by the confining
walls. In narrow valleys broad toe berm or very flat slopes at the toe of dam can
be provided relatively cheaply due to the small quantities of embankment material
required.
U/s slope may vary from 2:1 to as flat as 4:1 for stability, usually it is 2:1 or 3:1.
For eliminating slope protection in lower levels (below dead storage) slope may
be made flatter
Berm to act as base for top slope protection
Figure 4.21 Placement of random fill.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-41
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Steeper slopes may be allowed above normal conservation level
Random fill in lower part to flatten slope
D/s slope: 2:1 for dams with d/s pervious zone and 2
1/2
The slope of vertical core as: u/s face 1.5H:1V to 0.6H:1V; d/s face: 1:1 to
0.5H:1V; Inclined core: u/s face 1:1, d/s face 0.3:1 (reverse slope)
:1 for homogeneous dams.
This provides stability for most soils when drainage is provided to eliminate
saturation of d/s slope.
The slope depends on materials available, foundation condition, dam height, and
varies widely as: u/s from 2H:1V to 4H;1V. Coarser free draining materials allow
steeper slopes, and finer materials require flatter slope. In general slopes may be
as (Pumnia p-366):
Material u/s d/s
Homogeneous well graded 2.5:1 2:1
Coarse silt 3:1 2.5:1
Silty clay h < 15 m 2.5:1 2:1
h > 15 m 3:1 2.5:1
Sand and gravel with clay core 3:1 2.5:1
Concrete core 2.5:1 2:1
The slope of the dam also depends on the type of the dam and on the nature of
materials for construction.
Diaphragm Type
If shoulder material SW- GW or GW. (# 200 < 5%) slopes as for rockfill dam (1.3 to
1.7 Horizontal to 1 Vertical)
Homogeneous
Materials No rapid draw down Rapid drawdown
u/s d/s u/s d/s
GW GP SW SP Materials not suitable -too pervious
GC GM SC SM 2:1 2:1 3:1 2:1
CL ML 3:1 2:1 3:1 2:1
CH MH 3/6:1 2:1 4:1 2:1
Zoned embankment
Impervious core flanked by relatively pervious material.
Filter transition provided on both sides of the impervious zone to prevent piping
and internal erosion.
Transition materials partially fill cracks/holes in imp core.
Transition of rock fines or sand gravel.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-42
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Few feet required but constructed as 8-12 ft to accommodate construction
materials/machinery
Thick transition-design as filter
Thick transition-less requirements










Impervious Core
Pervious or impervious foundation with positive cut off - provide minimum core A
(top width 10, base = h, symmetric)
Exposed pervious foundations or covered pervious foundation (cover < 3 ft). No
positive cutoff-minimum core B (Top width 10, U/S 1:1, D/S 1:1)
Maximum core (Top width 10, U/S slope = (x-1/2) : 1, D/S slope = (y ) : 1;
where x:1 is slope of u/s face, y :1 is slope of d/s face)
For core greater than maximum core, outer shells become ineffective in stabilizing the
dam and embankment may be considered as homogenous for stability analysis.
Core smaller than minimum core dam as diaphragm type.
Impervious cover over foundation more than 3- select between core A and core B
depending on extent and effectiveness of the core.
Top of the core kept 3-5 ft below crest to safeguard against weathering.
Thickness of impervious cover over foundation more than dam height (d > h): For
saturated fine grained foundation use Core A + u/s and d/s random stabilizing fill
(Fig. 4.18). The slope of stabilizing fill depends on dam height (min 3:1) and
consistency and nature/group of foundation soil (4:1 for SM to 10:1 for CH). Further
details in USBR 2001 p=251, Table 16).
For core A stability not affected by core material (due to smaller thickness).
Minimum Core A: for dams on impervious foundation or shallow pervious foundation with
positive cutoff trench.
Minimum Core B: for dams on deep pervious foundations without positive cutoff.
Maximum Core:
Figure 4.21 Size range of impervious core for zoned embankment. (USBR p-266).
Slope = y:1
Slope = y-:1
Slope = 1:1
Slope = :1
1:1
x-:1
x:1
Z
Z
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-43
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Outside shell slopes governed by stability of fill material
Rocks, GW, GP, suitable for shell
Gravely SW and SP also suitable for shell
Embankment slopes may be selected according to materials as below.
USBR p-251 Table 16 defines slopes of stabilizing fill, min 3:1 and max 10:1.

Table 4.2: Recommended slopes for small zoned earthfill dams on stable foundations (USBR
p-267)
Type Shell material Core material No rapid
drawdown
Rapid
drawdown
U/s D/s U/s D/s
Min core A Rock, GW,
GP, SW, SP,
gravely
GC, GM, SC, SM,
CL, ML, CH, MH
2:1 2:1
Max core Rock, GW,
GP, SW, SP
gravely
GC, GM 2:1 2:1 2:1 2:1
SC, SM 2:1 2:1 2:1 2:1
CL, ML 2:1 2:1 3:1 2:1
CH, MH 3:1 3:1 3:1 3:1

Cross section of some dams in Pakistan are shown in chapter-1.
Tarbela Dam, Pakistan.
Rocks under alluvium and abutments.
Abutments: Metamorphosed sedimentary rocks (sugary limestone, phylite, quartzite, schist)
Alluvium: Boulders/cobbles and gravel choked with sand, depth as much as 600 ft.
4.11.3 Slope Protection
Dam slopes are needed to be protected against action of various destructive forces.
U/S Slopes: Protection is required against destructive waves splashing onto the side slope.
Waves generated due to high sustained winds as well as from earthquake action. Also needed
to be protected against burrowing animals.
D/S Slope: These need to be protected against erosion by wind
and rainfall runoff and the borrowing animals. This also needs to
be protected against possibility of seeping of rain water and
forming internal erosion (piping and sloughing of inside of
embankment).
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-44
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

I: UPSTREAM SLOPE
U/s slopes are provided protection by: rock riprap, concrete pavement, steel facing,
bituminous concrete pavement, pre cast concrete blocks, others as short cement pavement,
wood, sacked concrete. Special care is needed against beaching process if water level stays at
one elevation for long times.
Rock Riprap
This refers to placing of fairly large size rock pieces over the slope face. The rock
may be dumped or hand placed. The riprap is placed over a properly graded filter, which may
be a specially placed blanket or may be outer pervious zone of a zoned dam.
Dumped Riprap
The rock fragments/stones are dumped over the slope. The efficiency of dumped rock
riprap depends on following: Quality of the rock, Weight or size of individual stone pieces,
Thickness of the riprap, Shape of stones or rock fragments (rounded, angular), Slope of the
embankment, Stability and effectiveness of the filter.
Rock for riprap should be hard, dense and durable, resist long exposure to weathering.
Igneous, metamorphic rocks, limestone, hard sandstones make excellent riprap. Visual
inspection and lab tests, petrographic tests assure quality. Rocks should be free of seams of
shale (low quality rocks).
Individual pieces should be of sufficient weight to resist displacement by waves (must
for all size dams). The thickness of riprap should be sufficient to accommodate weight and
size of stones necessary to resist wave action (Fig. 4.22). A 3 minimum thickness is used.
Smaller thickness if wave action is less severe. Lesser thickness may be used for upper slopes
corresponding to flood control storage (above normal conservation level) due to infrequent
exposure of this part to waves. If there is any damage to this section, it can be repaired on
reservoir lowering.







Slope protection Min 3 ft
Shell material
(min 4-6 ft to
enable placing)
Filter or bedding layer 1 ft
min (washed gravel fill)
Figure 4.22a: U/s Slope protection.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-45
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams



Figure 4.22b: Dumped rock riprap. (L: placement in progress and R: completed)

Figure 4.22c: Hand placed rock riprap. (USBR p-279)
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-46
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.22d: Mangla dam raising: Protection of d/s slope by hand/machine placed rounded
river-run cobbles. (looking downward)

Figure 4.22e: Mangla dam raising: U/s slope protection by angular rock riprap over filter.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-47
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.22f: Simly dam: u/s slope protection by angular rock riprap.


Figure 4.22g: Tanpura-I dam: u/s slope protection by rounded rock riprap.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-48
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.22h: Mangla dam: u/s face protection by angular rock riprap.

Figure: D/s face protection, Dharabi Dam, Potohar, Chakwal.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-49
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Riprap weight
(Zipparro eds. Davis Handbook of Applied Hydraulics, p-13.58) defined the riprap
weight as:
( ) ( )
b
a
Cot G K
H
W

3
50
1
=
W
max
= 4 W
50
and W
min
= W
50
W
/8
50
H = Wave height (ft)
= Average stone weight (lbs)
= Stone unit weight (lbs/cft) (bulk unit weight after placement) ~ 156 lb/cft
G = Sp. Gravity of stones material (2.3 2.7)
= angle (degrees) of slope surface with horizontal
K = stability coefficient (K 4.37)
a, b = empirical coefficient (In general coefficient are as: a = 3, b 1)
Novak et al (p-54) defined size of rock armoring necessary for stability under wave action is
as: M = 10
3
x H
s
3
where M=mass of stone required (kg), and H
s
The size of riprap is estimated as: D = [7 W / 5 ]
=significant wave height
(m).
1/3
where D = stone size (ft), W = stone
weight, = bulk un i t weight (lbs/cft). The th i ckness must be more than size of
heaviest/largest stones. In no case it should be smaller than 1.5 x D
50
USBR p-277 provided gradation (by weight in lbs) of riprap for slope = 3:1 and angular rocks
as:
or 24
Fetch thickness Max D
50-60
D
40-50
D
< 2.5 miles 30 2500 lbs 1250 75-1250 75
0-10

> 2.5 ml 36 4500 2250 1000-2250 100
Sand and rock dust < 5% by weight
Rounded size d
0-10
Rounded rocks require a thicker layer, or slope should be made flatter
is meant to fill the voids in larger rocks.
For 2:1 slope, 36 minimum thickness be used.
Shape of Rock
Shape of rock fragments influences the ability of riprap to resist displacement by
wave action. Angular fragments tend to interlock better than boulders and rounded cobbles.
Thus rounded stones should have more thickness.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-50
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Graded Filter
A layer or blanket of graded filter should be provided underneath the riprap if there is
danger of fines from underneath layer to more into the riprap layer by wave action. For a
zoned dam filter not needed if outer shall is gravel. Blanket of crushed rock or natural gravels
3/16 to 3
1/2
Flexibility
with thickness equal to half of riprap thickness (but not less than 12) is
satisfactory. Follow filter criteria discussed earlier.
Dumped filter should have flexibility to adjust base surface an account of settlement
of dam body or local settlement.
Placement
The riprap is dumped from hauling trucks onto the prepared surface. Bulldozers are
used to level off-and compact the dumped layer to fill up the voids between larger stones.
Smaller stones fit in voids of larger pieces very well. The rock stones must not break during
handling / placement / compaction. Top surface is uneven, rough and decreases wave riprap.
Riprap materials had been hauled from long distances (200+ miles) due to its satisfactory and
proven performance and economy.
Hand Packed rock Riprap
This consists of suitably sized stones carefully laid by hand in a more or less definite
pattern with minimum amount of voids and with top surface relatively smooth. Doubled or
irregular shapes lay up less satisfactorily than stones of roughly square shape. Stones of flat
stratified nature should be placed with principal bedding plane normal to slope. Joints should
be broken as much as possible and voids be avoided carefully by arranging various sizes of
stones and small rock fragments.
The stones of excellent quality should be used. Thickness can be half of dumped
riprap but not less than 12. Filter blanket be provided underneath the riprap, if required. Due
to tight packing, hand placed riprap is not as flexible, so it cannot adjust to foundation or
local settlement. Thus hand placed riprap should not be used where considerable settlement is
expected. Hand placed riprap could be costly due to extensive labor cost in spite of its smaller
thickness.

Concrete Paving
Concrete is placed over the sloping surface to resist wave destruction. It can be used
both for rockfill and earthfill dams. Paving thickness depend on dam height, slope steepness.
Thickness is 8 for h 50 for and 12-18 for high dams. Paving is placed in blocks 6 x 6 or
more but monolithic construction gives the best service. A water tight surface will eliminate
hydrostatic pressure underneath the pavement. Blocks could be displaced or broken by wave
action and uplift forces under the slab. Concrete can crack requiring frequent maintenance.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-51
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

For blocks, expansion joints and construction joints should be widely spaced.
Reinforcement is (5% area) in both directions and be continuous through the construction
joints. Joints be sealed with plastic fillers and cracks be grouted and sealed properly.
Pavement should extend from crest to below the minimum water levels. It should terminate at
a berm and against a deep seated curb or header (minimum 18 deep).
The success of concrete pavement is mixed, but successes and problems have been
observed. Paving is a costly alternate, but may be adopted if enough riprap material is not
available. Concrete pavement may or may not be held in place firmly by foundation bolts
embedded deep inside sloping shell. Concrete paving increase the wave runup and suitable
wave breakers, wave deflectors, may be provided to reduced risk of dam overtopping. Failure
chance is 30% + due to inherent deficiencies in this type of construction.
Soil Cement
Soil cement is produced by mixing cement with coarse sandy or gravely soil with 10-
25% material passing # 200 sieve are ideal (Maximum allowed < 50% of # 200). The cement
is 0.7-1.0 barrel of cement per cubic yard of compacted soil cement. 2-4% extra cement may
be added for erosion resistance. For most soils 10-12% cement (% of compacted volume) is
considered typical. Cement and moisture ratio is determined by lab tests.
Soil cement is placed in 6-8 horizontal layers over the slope (horizontal width as 8 ft
normal thickness 2-3 ft) and roller compacted in a stair-step horizontal layers. Soil cements
have 500-1000 lb/inch compressive strength at 7-day (10% cement). The edges of the cement
layers are not trimmed to retard wave runup. A reasonably firm foundation is required so that
deformation following placement of soil-cement is not significant. Normal embankment
construction procedures are satisfactory.










8-10 ft
2-3.5 ft
Concrete paving with coping wall
Concrete paving with
wave breakers Soil cement
Figure 4.23a: Paving with soil cement or concrete.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-52
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.23b: Soil cement paving.

II. DOWNSTREAM SLOPE
The zoned dams with d/s shell of rock or cobble fill do not need additional slope
protection. Slope protection is required for all conditions against erosion by wind and rainfall.
If not protected gully can develop.
This protection is provided by
placing a layer of rock, cobbles, or
sod (grass). However, vegetation
protection can be poor and
ineffective at places, especially in
arid regions. Thus cobbles/rock protection is preferred. The stone is 24 thickness (minimum
12) over a filter bed should be provided. Minimum single layer hand placed cobbles / stones.
Berm or a cut slope may be provided at intervals and graded contour drainage channels
provided to collect and dispose the rain runoff from upper portions of dam slope. Drainage
channels discharge into cement lined channels running down the slope and ultimately to safe
disposal point/river bed. A contour drain is also provided along toe of dam. Surface drainage
is also provided (as an open gutter) for abutments and valley floor.
4.11.4 Abutments
FLARED ABUTMENT SLOPES
The u/s and d/s slopes of embankment are often flared at abutments to provide flatter
slopes for stability and seepage control. The u/s flaring is equivalent to providing u/s
impermeable blanket. The flaring design is governed by topography of the site, the length of
Cut slope
Berm
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-53
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

constant desired, for aesthetic value, and ease of construction. For steep side slopes this may
be useful to locate access road across the dam.
ABUTMENT SIDE SLOPES
The side slope of impervious abutment are usually discontinuous. The sides are
dressed with slope not exceeding 1H:2V to provide a stable contact between the embankment
and abutments. The bottom should be continuous without abrupt level changes. Any hang
over should be removed to have good contact.









4.12 ENGINEERING CHARACTERISTICS OF SOILS [Novak et al. 1998, p-36-45]
Soil load pore water pressure response
Soils undergo deformation as a result of changes in loading or drainage conditions
due to alterations in the geometric configuration of the soil particle assembly. The volume
changes and settlement due to external loading takes place slowly through the complex
process of consolidation. Relationships in the form of pore-pressure coefficients are used to
describe immediate response of pore water pressure to applied total stress.
Shear strength
The shear strength of a soil is defined as the maximum resistance to shearing stress
which can be mobilized; when this is exceeded failure occurs usually along identifiable slip
surfaces. The shear strength of any material is described by Mohr-Coulomb failure criterion
based on total stress as: S = c + tan or based on effective stress as: S = c + tan =
total compressive stress ( = + u), = effective stress, u = pore water pressure.
Laboratory shear tests, e.g. triaxial shear test, are run for the material compacted to the design
density / moisture content and construction of Mohr circle plot. Coarse soils such as sands
derive their shear strength largely from particle interlock and internal friction, and are called
as cohesionless (c=0) or frictional soils; the shear strength is mostly controlled largely soil
density.y . Most clays soils derive shear strength from both cohesion and internal friction.
Following tests are usually carried out. (Sherard p-332)
Remove overhangs
Trim slopes to max 0.5V:1H
Figure 4.24 Abutment shaping.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-54
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

1. Undrained test: (unconsolidated undrained test). No drainage and dissipation of
pore water pressure. Called as Q-test (quick test). Used for stability analysis for
dam during and after construction.
2. Consolidated-undrained test. (sample first consolidated with full pore water
pressure dissipation under given consolidation pressure) and then is failed in shear
with no drainage allowed. This is called R test.
3. Drained test consolidated. Drainage and complete dissipation of pore pressure
allowed at all stages (slow test) For parameters in terms of effective stress (c and
). Called as S test (slow test)
Compressibility and consolidation
When load is applied to a soil, mass volume decreases and settlement may occur due
to (a) elastic deformation of soil particles, (b) compression of the pore fluid, (c) explusion of
pore fluid from the stressed zone with rearrangement of soil particles, with expulsion of pore
water being dominant. The consolidation of clays is very slow due to their very low
permeability. Vertical consolidation characteristics are determined in lab in oedometer tests
and expressed by:
Coefficient of volume compressibility to determine the magnitude of time dependent
consolidation settlement: m
v
=
v
/
v
Coefficient of consolidation to establish rates of settlement: c

v
= k/m
v

w
Coefficient of secondary consolidation to describe subsequent continuing settlement due to
creep of the soil structure under constant effective stress.
(k=permeability)
Compaction
Compaction is the process of densification by expulsion of the air from the soil void spaces,
and result in closer particle packing, improved strength and reduced settlement. Rollers
assisted by vibratory excitation are used for field compaction of embankments. The degree of
compaction is measured in terms of dry density
d
Representative engineering properties for soils:
= /(1+w) where = bulk in-situ density,
w is moisture content. Compaction of soil modifies the major engineering characteristics as
shear strength, compressibility, volume change due to change in moisture content, and
permeability.
Description Saturated
unit
weight
(kN/m
3
Shear strength (effective
strength basis)
)
Coefficient of
compressibility
,
mv
(x10

-4
m
2
Coefficient
of horizontal
permeability
k
/kN)
h
(m/s)
Cohesion
c (kN/m
2
Friction,
(degrees) )
Gravels 17-22 0 30-45 0.1 1.0 10
-1
10
-2

Sand 0 30-45
10
-2
10
-5

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-55
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Silts < 5 20-35
10
-4
10
-6

Clay (soft-
medium)
15-21 0 20-30 1.0 10.0
Intact clays,
< 10
-8
, if
weathered,
fissured, or
with silt
lenses 10
-3

10
-8

Clays (sensitive,
silty)
< 10 < 30
Clays (medium-
stiff)
< 50 < 20

4.12 SEEPAGE ANALYSIS
Seepage flow will occur through all types of formation irrespective how small the
permeability may be. Seepage occur both through the dam embankment as well as dam
foundation. Seepage flow is given by Darcys law q = K I per unit flow cross section and as
Q = q A = K I A = K hA/L through section of area A.
Flow net method is used for simple flow conditions. Seepage occurs as confined flow
through the foundation and as unconfined flow through the embankment. A flow net is
drawn with curvilinear squares; different squares may have different area but all have flow
lines and potential lines cross at right angle and that all four sides are of equal curved length
(Fig. 4.25). The flow is given as
Q = K H N
f
/ N
K = Permeability (m/s)
d

H = Head difference across two ends
N
f
N
= No. of flow lines
d
Flow net are drawn on a to-scale map of the dam + foundation cross section. Usually the
permeability in horizontal orientation is higher than permeability in vertical orientation (an-
isotropic case). Experience, skill and practice is required to draw flow net. See figures on
next page.
= No. of potential drops
Flow net provide
1. Seepage flow rate through the section
2. Distribution of water potential (h) and pore water pressure u (u = h z ; z =
elevation and Note: u, h, z has units of length and are taken from a pre-selected
datum). Also u = P/g = P/, P = water pressure, = water density, = sp weight.
The water potential h and pore water pressure is given in units of pressure head;
this should be multiplied with unit weight of water ( = 62.4 lbs/cft, 1000 kg mass
No. of flow tubes = N
f
= 4.3
h
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-56
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

/m
3

) to convert it to pressure units. Pore water pressure distribution is needed for
stability analysis.




























a) Seepage exit at d/s
face of dam.
b: Seepage exit into vertical
face chimney drain
c) Seepage exit into
rockfill toe
d) Seepage exit into
drainage blanket
Figure 4.27 Phreatic line for various seepage exit conditions.
Seepage
exit face
h/3
h
Equi-potential drops: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 12
Figure 4.26 Drawing equi-potential lines through the dam embankment.
h
h=h/m
B
H C
0.3 L
L
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-57
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Procedure to draw flow net
1. Draw a to-scale map of dam and foundation
2. Determine the seepage exit area
3. The u/s face of the embankment is plane where seepage originates.
4. The d/s exit area is usually up to a height h/3 for a homogeneous dam (h = dam
height). For a modified homogeneous dam, the flow will converge towards the toe
drain or the horizontal blanket drain. Flow emerges tangentially to the exit face for
d/s face or chimney drain or vertical line for rockfill toe or drainage blanket (Fig.
4.27).
5. The seepage line is part of parabola and exits tangent to the d/s surface.
6. Establish the seepage line/phreatic surface. The seepage line intersects the
reservoir water surface at a distance 0.3 L from the point C (point C is at water
surface at u/s face) where L is the horizontal projection of the u/s face (Fig. 4.26).
The actual phreatic line is modified to meet at point C.
7. Determine the head difference h between u/s and d/s exit area h = h
u/s
h
8. Select number of potential drops m over h. Determine head drop across one
potential drop h = h/m. Divide the seepage line into selected equal h intervals.
Thus total number of potential drops N
d/s

d
9. Draw equipotential lines from these points such that they intersect to the seepage
line and lower confining layers at right angle. Towards the u/s face these
equipotential lines will take parallelism to the slope of the u/s face.
= h/h.
10. Draw a flow line in the middle part of the flow area keeping it normal to potential
lines but approximately curvilinear and parallel to seepage line such that
approximate squares are formed. Extend this flow to the originating surface (i.e.
u/s face) and to the exit surface (i.e. d/s face or toe/blanket drain). Draw more
flow lines to the bottom confining layer.
11. The effect of confining surface on the shape of flow lines and equipotential lines
diminishes farther from the confining surface.
12. The flow net is formed of curvilinear squares (equal sides, right angle). Few non-
squares will not affect seepage flow rate but may affect internal head distribution.
13. Flow net become more complex if more than one material or anisotropic materials
are present.
14. For large differences in K of the two materials of embankment and foundation the
flow lines can cross from foundation into upper embankment or from
embankment into bottom foundation (the material of higher K will attract flow
lines from other material). For small differences in K the flow lines originating
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-58
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

from any material will continue within the same material and will not cross into
the other material.
15. Flow lines are attracted by chimney drain, drainage blanket and toe drain.









Phreatic Line in earth dams with drainage blanket: Graphical Method (Fig. 4.28)
L = Horizontal projection B-D of the upstream face length A-D
Mark point C as CD = 0.3 L
Taking C as center draw circle of radius CF to point E.
Draw vertical tangent from E to H (E-H line is directrix )
G point midway between F and H. This is extremity of seepage line D-P-G
Draw vertical line at Q (F-Q = x)
With F as center, Q-H as radius R, cut PQ vertical at P. The distance P-Q = y.
(x,y) are the coordinates of the seepage line parabola. Draw other points similar to
P. The seepage line meets at C.
U/S end part of the seepage line is redrawn to meet the water surface at D at right
angle.
Seepage rate
I = dy/dx, A = y x 1, Q = K I A = KS, where S = Focal distance = FH. Also
( ) T h T K Q + =
2 2





A
B
C
0.3 L
L
F G H
Q
x
R = x+S
R
P(x,y)
D
E
Figure 4.28 Phreatic surface D-P-G for dam with drainage blanket.
y
S
h
T
Directrix
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-59
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

















Seepage Through Dam Foundation
Seepage through the dam foundation is also determined by drawing flow net for the
foundation section. The flow net is drawn by procedure similar to for the embankment. The
seepage control measures are also considered while drawing the flow net and determining the
seepage rates.
Example: {Lambe and Whitman 1969, p-273. K = 5 x 10
-4
Top width = 14 ft, u/s and d/s slope = 1.5:1, toe drain = 30 ft, total base = 140 ft, height = 42
ft, free board = 2 ft.
ft/sec, Fig. 4.31.
N
f
= 2.8, N
d
= 9, = 42 2 = 40 ft, h = 40/9 = 4.444 ft, saturated flux = 5 x 10
-4
x 2.8/9 x 40
= 6.22 x 10
-3
ft
3
/s/ft, unsaturated flux = 0.58 x 10
-3
ft
3
/s/ft total seepage flux = 6.80 x 10
-3

ft
3

/s/ft.}




Figure 4.30 Equipotential contours and flow lines for seepage through dam foundation with sheet pile.
(a)
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-60
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams





Figure 4.31 Seepage flow net for rockfill toe homogeneous e/f dam. (b), (c) by Seep/W
showing equi potential lines and flow lines respectively.
Blanket drain thickness:
The thickness of the blanket drain required to pass seepage discharge q per unit width is as:
d d d
K K H K L q t
1
5 . 1 = where L is shoulder width at drain level, H is the reservoir
water depth above drain level, K
1
= permeability of dam core material and K
d
Seepage Analysis by Computer Software
is permeability
of drain material.(Novak et al. 1998, p-61)
Computer software are available (e.g SEEP/W) to determine seepage flow through the
dam embankment and the foundation. These programs are user friendly and easily
incorporate the seepage control measures, the seepage exit conditions, varying material
properties, etc. The program result provides seepage flux through selected sections, equi
potential contours, distribution of potential/head, seepage flux vectors, and seepage flow
lines, etc.
Permissible Seepage
Seepage control measures are provided to reduce seepage quantity and the uplift
pressures due to seepage flows. The seepage quantity is usually not very large and the
seeping water could be used beneficially at some downstream location. The uplift pressures
are usually more critical in the stability of the dam structure. Thus seepage control measures
are sized to achieve acceptable gradients in the flow domain. Cedergen (1967) defined the
(c)
(b)
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-61
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

acceptable average hydraulic gradients exerted by the water seeping through the embankment
and foundations should not exceed the following critical values.
Impervious core 1:4
Impervious blanket 1:15
Alluvial foundation 1:0.066 (15:1)
Rock foundation 1:1
Materials placed around seepage water collection system to comply with filter criteria.
[Source: Cedergren, H. R. 1967. Seepage, Drainage and Flownets, 2
nd
Gradient method: 1) determine average hydraulic gradient in soil element, 2) determine
magnitude of seepage force (F = 62.5 I V, V = element volume), 3) determine direction of
seepage force, 4) line of action of seepage force.
edition, John Wiley
& Sons Inc., New York] p-115, 16.

4.13 STABILITY ANALYSIS
Dam sections are analysis for safety against failure by shear and sliding. The sliding
of dam can occur at base of dam or any height above the base. Most earthfill dams built with
good material and placed on sound foundation are considered safe against sliding. The safety
against shear failure is analyzed for the following conditions: (Sherard p-326)
1. During and after construction for both u/s and d/s faces. Assume pore pressure
high and not drained; Analysis is based on lab Q test
2. Full reservoir steady seepage d/s face; Analysis is based on lab S - test
3. Rapid drawdown u/s face pore water undrained and pore pressure high;
Analysis is based on lab R- test
4. Seismic loading; Analysis is based on lab R- test
A factor of safety is determined for various situations. The dam section is accepted if the
factor of safety for the selected loading condition is higher than recommended values. Else
the dam section (i.e. side slope of core and shell and materials) is revised and safety re-
evaluated.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-62
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Method of Slices / Sweadish Circle Method
Procedure
Problem is considered in 2-D space (cross section)
a continuous potential surface of shear failure (usually called slip surface) passing
through dam embankment and/or foundation is assumed. Slip surface could be a
combination of part of a circle, an arc, line, etc. Sliding surface-circular or
combination of arc and straight lines (Fig. 4.32).
Shape and location of the slip surface chosen arbitrarily.
Material above the selected slip surface is called a trial sliding mass
The trial sliding mass divided into 8-10 slices as in Fig 4.33. (dam unit thick)
Width of each slice adjusted so that entire base of a slice is located on a single
material and chord length L does not significantly differ from arc length.
Available shear force from material properties S = c + tan is determined along
base of selected surface
Actual shear force from loading conditions determined.
Factor of safety F
S
Procedure is repeated for other potential failure surfaces until a critical surface
obtained with lowest factor of safety.
= Shear strength force available Shear force applied
Slip surface as circle
Slip surface as lines
Slip surface as arc
Slip surface as arc + line
Figure 4.32: Various shapes of slip surface as circle, arc, lines.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-63
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Analysis is based on shear strength derived on the basis of total stress S = c +
tan , or effective stress as : S = c + tan , where = - u.















For each slice of bottom width b, compute forces as:
a) Total weight W of the slice. W = area of slice x slice thickness (unit) x grass
unit weight (Soil + water). For same height of the two sides of the slice area =
D x b. For marked difference in length of two sides, area of trepezoid as A =
(D
L
+ D
R
b) Normal component of W force acting on bottom of slice: N = W cos
)/2 x b.
c) Tangential component of weight: T = W sin
d) Total water potential h acting on the slice bottom is determined from the equi-
potential contour map. The pore water pressure head (units of L) is then
determined as u = h z, where z is the elevation of the bottom from selected
datum. Total pore water pressure head U acting on bottom of slice as: U = u x
b/cos x 1 = average pore water pressure x area of bottom of slice. Area of
bottom of slice = L x 1 = b/cos x 1. The pore water pressure head U is
converted to force units as U
Force units
= U
Length units
x
w

1
2
3
4
5
6
7
11
12
15
b
W
5

T
5

N
5


Assumed slip surface (circle) through embankment and foundation
CORE
Figure 4.33: Dam stability analysis by method of slices.
W
5

T
5

N
5

b
L
D

Slice # 5
Center of slip circle
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-64
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

e) The cohesion of the material c or c is determined from lab tests of the
materials. The total shearing resistance component due to cohesion C = unit
cohesion x area of bottom of slice. Thus C = c b/cos
f) Total shear resistance which can be developed on the bottom of the any slice
at failure: S = C + (N - U) tan [N-U = ]
g) Determine sum of tangential force T and shear resistance S on all slices.
h) Safety factor F = S/T = [C+(N-U) tan ] / W x Sin
NOTE: T, U and N may be worked as continuous curve across all slices. Normal components
pass through center of rotation and does not cause any driving moment on the slice.
Tangential component T causes a driving moment M=T x r, r = radius of slip surface.
Resisting forces determined from Columbs equation.
For homogeneous and uniform cohesive soils a circular arc is considered for slip
circle. The locus of the centre of the critical circle with r
u
Z
< 0.3 is approximated as:
c
= H Cot (0.6 + 2 tan ) and Y
c
where Z
= H Cot (0.6 - tan )
c
, Y
c
= coordinate w.r.t. toe of dam (+ve up and left), = slope angle, H = height, z =
depth below ground surface, r
u
= dimensionless pore pressure ratio, = u
w
Method of Sliding block
/Z.
Same as method of slices, but 2-3 slices only called blocks.
Stability of D/s slope for steady seepage
For steady seepage the d/s slope is liable to shear failure. A slip surface is selected over the
d/s slope. The sliding mass is divided into slices or blocks and factor of safety determined by
above procedure. The pore water pressure along the base of sliding slices is determined from
an equipotential contour of the d/s slope (Fig. 4.34).


9




1
2




1
4




1
6




1
8




2
0




2
2




2
4




2
6




2
8




3
0




3
0




3
2




3
4




3
6




3
7




3
8




3
9




4
0




4
0




4
2




4
4




4
5



4
6




5
1




5
2




5
3



5
4



Figure 4.34: Equipotential lines for steady seepage in a vertical core earthfill dam.
Stability of U/S slope During Sudden Drawdown
When reservoir is suddenly lowered, the Hydrostatic force acting on u/s force is
removed and weight of water tends to help a sliding failure as no outside pressure to
counteract it. Water in the saturated mass tend to drain towards both U/S face and the
permeable foundation. Permeability of foundation material affects drainage pattern. If
foundation is permeable then flow is downward, if impermeable flow horizontally outward
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-65
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

towards outer faces. The U/S face is not an equipotential line but potential varies with height
as h = z = elevation. Water potential within the saturated mass of soil changes according to
the u/s potential.
A slip surface is considered along the u/s face. Determine h, z, and u = h-z on bottom
of the slices along the slip surface. The pore water pressure is determined from corresponding
equipotential contour map (Figure 4.35). Determine safety factor by procedure above.
No change in water content within the saturated mass of the earthfill.
Hydrostatic force acting on u/s face is removed and potential at face h = z (point height)
Weight of water tend to help sliding failure as no outside pressure to counteract it.
Permeability of foundation material affect drainage pattern. If more permeable, flow
downward, if imp, flow is horizontally outward.


9




1
0



1
2




1
4




1
4




1
6




1
7




1
8




2
0


2
0



2
2



2
2




2
4




2
4




2
5




2
6




2
6




2
7




2
8




2
8




2
9




3
0




3
0




3
2




3
4




3
6




3
7


3
8

3
9

40


4
0


42
44
45
46

Figure 4.35: Equipotential lines for sudden drawdown in a vertical core earthfill dam.

U/s + d/s face during and at end of construction
The embankment fill of core is compacted to maximum dry density at optimum moisture
content. Soil mass changes due to compaction and by its own weight. The pore water
pressure increases on compaction due to decrease of void ratio. The pore water pressure after
compaction is determined by Hilfs equation as (Fig. 4.36).
+

=
w c a
a
V h V
P
u
where
u = pore water induced pressure
P
a
= embankment compression in % of original total embankment volume
= air pressure in voids of soil mass after initial compaction atmospheric
pressure corrected for the site elevation)
V
a
V
= Volume of free air voids as % of original total embankment volume
w
h
= Volume of pore water as % of original total embankment volume
c
= Henery constant of stability of air in water = 0.02 at 68
o
F
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-66
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams








Figure 4.36: Consolidation and water potential in dams.
Draw graph between effective stress and % compression (Plot 1)
For each , determine u from Hilfs equation. Also determine corresponding
from plot 1. Determine = + u.
Draw u vs. (plot 2)
Find mid height D of each slice bottom
Calculate total stress = D and find u for each slice from plot 2 corresponding to
.
Determine the safety factor as above procedure.
NOTE: DAVIS. HAH P.18-38
In zoned dam, critical circle is located so that a maximum portion of its length passes through
materials of lowest shear strength (core or foundation layer). The slip surface can be as part
of Toe circle, Slope circle or Midpoint circle.










%


u
Plot 1
Plot 2
Mid point circle
Slope circle
Toe circle
Figure 4.37: Trial slip circle.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-67
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Recommended Factor of Safety (Novak)
Design loading F
s
During/end of construction 1.25 1.25 (1.3 to 1,5)
u/s d/s
+ earth quake 1.0 1.0
Reservoir full/partial (steady conditions) - 1.5
+ earth quake - 1.1
Rapid drawdown 1.2 -
(Slip circle between highest and lowest water levels)
Seismic loading 1.1 1.1
Steady seepage + surcharge pool condition - 1.4
Example:
The Fig. 4.38 shows section of an earthfill dam at its maximum depth showing steady
seepage phreatic line, equipotential lines, a trial slip surface A-B-C-D-E. Scale: 1 block = 5x5
m. Dam height = 60 m, depth at normal conservation level = 55 m, U/s slope = 2:1, d/s slope
= 2:1, Core uniform width = 20 m, core height = 55 m. The material properties are as: Core:
c' = 5 KPa, ' = 30, average unit weight = 20 KN/m
3
, K = 1 x 10
-5
cm/s. Fill: c' = 3 KPa, '
= 35, = 18 KN/m
3
, K = 5 x 10
-4
Solution:
cm/s. Determine the factor of safety for the d/s face for
steady seepage condition for the shown slip surface by using method of sliding blocks.
The slip area is divided into four sliding blocks 1 to 4. The width, side height are noted for
each block as: width = 20, 20, 40 and 30 m and sections heights as 15, 35, 35, 20 and 0.
1: Total weight of each block.
W1 = 5x15x18 + 10x15x20 + (15x20)/2x20 = 1350 + 3000 + 3000 = 7350 KN
W2 = (35+35)/2x20x18 = 12600 KN
W3 = (35+20)/2x40x18 = 19800 KN W4 = (20+0)/2*30*18 = 5400 KN
2. Bottom length:
L1 = [15
2
+25
2
]
0.5
= 29.15 m; L2 = [20
2
+10
2
]
0.5
L3 = [40
= 22.36m;
2
+5
2
]
0.5
= 40.31 m; L4 = [30
2
+5
2
]
0.5


9




1
2




1
4




1
6




1
8




2
0




2
2




2
4




2
6




2
8



3
0




3
0




3
2




3
4




3
6




3
7




3
8




3
9




4
0




4
0




4
2




4
4




4
5




4
6




5
1














= 30.41 m

Figure 4.38: Dam d/s slope stability for constant seepage.
3. Inclination of bottom
A
B
C
D
E
F
2
1
3
4
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-68
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

1 = tan
-1
(25/15) = 59.04 2 = tan
-1
3 = tan
(10/20) = 26.57
-1
(5/40) = 7.13 4 = tan
-1
4. Component of block weight normal to base N:
(5/30) = - 9.46
N1 = 7350 x cos 59.04 = 3781 KN N2 = 12600 x cos 26.57 = 11269 KN
N3 = 19800 x cos 7.13 = 19647 KN N4 = 5400 x cos 9.46 = 5327 KN
N in core = N1 = 3781 KN; N in fill = N1+N2+N3=11269+19647+5327 = 36243 KN
5. Component of block weight normal to base T:
T1 = 7350 sin 59.04 = 6303 KN T2 = 12600 x sin 26.57 = 5636 KN
T4 = 19800 x sin 7.13 = 2458 KN T4 = 5400 x sin -9.46 = - 888 KN
T = 6303 + 5636 + 2458 888 = 13509 KN = Total shearing force
6. Total water pressure head h, elevation, and net pore water pressure at points B, C, D, E,
F:
h (m) = 47.5 37.0 33.4 24.9 15
z (m) = 45 25 15 10 15
u (m) = 2.5 12 18.4 14.9 0
u (KPa) = 24.52 117.72 180.50 146.17 0
Average pore water pressure u along bottom of each block:
u1 = (24.52+117.72)/2 = 71.12 KPa, u2 = (117.72+180.50)/2 = 149.11 KPa,
u3 = (180.50 + 146.17)/2 = 163.33 KPa, u4 = (146.17 + 0)/2 = 73.08 KPa.
Total pore water pressure force along block bottom U:
U1 = 71.12 KPa x 29.15 m x 1 m= 2073 KN U2 = 149.11 x 22.36 = 3334 KN
U3 = 163.33 x 40.31 x 1 = 6584 KN U4 = 73.08 x 30.41 x 1 = 2223 KN
U in core = U1 = 2073 KN; U in fill = 3334 + 6584 + 2223 = 12141 KN
7. Cohesion along slip surface C:
C1 = (3x5 + 5x10 + 5x29.15) x 1 = 211 KN C2 = 3x22.36x1 = 67 KN
C3 = 3x40.31 x 1 = 121 KN C4 = 3 x 30.41 x 1 = 91 KN
C = 211 + 67 + 121 + 91 = 490 KN
8. Total shearing resistance mobilized:
S = 490 + (3781 - 2073) tan 30 + (36243 12141) tan 35 = 490 + 986 + 16876 = 18352 KN
9. Factor of safety FOS = 18352/13509 = 1.359

STABILITY OF FOUNDTION AGAINST SHEAR
Foundations of finer loose cohesionless materials or of unconsolidated clays and silts-
weak in shear.
Approximate method
Assumption earthen material has an equivalent liquid unit weight which would
produce same shear stress as the material itself.
P = total horizontal shear down to rigid
boundary
h
1

h
2

b
0.4b
h
P
A B C
Rigid boundary
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-69
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

)
2
45 ( tan
2
1 2
m
2
2
2

=
h h
P
i

1
= equivalent angle of friction
1
1 m
1
c tan h
tan
h
m

+
=
where
, c = shear parameters of foundation materials

m
1
2 2 1
) (
h
h h h
f d
m

+
=
= mean unit weight of dam and foundation weighted in proportion to depth of each

d
= unit weight of dam material and
f
Max unit shear S
= unit weight of foundation material.
max
= 1.4 S
av
Now average unit shear = s
and occur at point B which is 0.4 b from C
av
Let S
= P/b
1
= unit shear strength below toe (at A) = c +
f
h
2
S
tan
2
= unit shear strength at point C = c +
m
h
1
Average shear strength S = (S
tan
1
+ S
2
Overall factor of safety against shear = S/S
)/2
av
Factor of safety at maximum shear:
. This schould be > 1.5
Let S = Unit shear strength at point of max. shear (point B) = c +
av

h tan
av
= mean effective unit weight = (
d
h +
f
h
2
) / (h+h
2
) and F.S. =
S/S
max
Inter slice Force
. This should be greater than 1.0
Slice Normal force at base
= W + (X
L
X
R
) + N Cos + S
m
Ordinary or Fellenius No inter slice forces
- D Sin w
Bishop horizontal - yes, Shear No
Janbu horizontal - No, No shear-but a correction
factor used to account for interslice shear force
Stability may be ascertained by considering Moment or force
equilibrium
Moment equilibrium on individual slice or Overall sliding man
Force equilibrium summation of horizontal forces
Inter slice shear force X = E f(x)
E
R

E
L

X
R

X
L

W
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-70
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

f(x) = inter slice force function
= % (in decimal) of function used
Weight W increased/decreased by X amount
SAFETY AGAINST SETTLEMENT AND DEFORMATION [Novak et al. 1990]
Dams are provided with some free board for safety against overtopping. The dam fill
material is however liable to settle and deform resulting in decrease of free board. To assure
safety against future settlement of dam crest, the crest is elevated by the amount of future
settlement.
The primary consolidation
1
which develop as excess pore water pressure are
dissipated (during the course of construction of the dam embankment) can be estimated in
terms of coefficient of compressibility m
v
, the depth of compressible soil and mean vertical
effective stress increase as:
1
= m
v
Embankment:
. Then:
1e
= m
ve

d
H
2
/2, [ =
d
Foundation:
H2/2]
1f
= m
vf
D
f

f
[
f
= I
d
where H = embankment height, D
Ze]
f
The secondary consolidation settlement
is depth of compressible foundation, I is influence factor
(depending on foundation elasticity and depth-width ratio; for representative
embankment/dam foundation geometries I ~ 0.90-0.99.)
2
can be estimated from the coefficient of
secondary consolidation C

as:
2
= C

z log(t
2
/t
1
) where z is the height H or D
f
as
appropriate and times t
2
and t
1
are relative to completion of primary consolidation. Values of
C

See worked example 2.4 by Noval et al. 1990.


are generally below 0.002 for over consolidated clay fills, rising to 0.005 and 0.5 for
softer normally consolidated clays.

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-71
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

II: ROCKFILL DAMS

4.21 ROCKFILL DAM (Source: USBR ch-7, Golze ch-7)
Rockfill dams are type of embankment dams where more than 50% rock mass
of varying size and quality is used for construction of the embankment. The rockfill has
usually very large permeability and thus large amounts of water can seep through the rockfill
embankment. Thus a seepage control membrane is used to minimize seepage through the
embankment. The alignment of the dam (dam axis) is selected for minimum embankment
volume and/or membrane exposure. There are two main modes of seepage control membrane.
Internal membrane (central core). The membrane is located inside the
embankment (Figs. 4.41 and 4.42). The membrane materials include earth/clay
core, reinforced cement concrete (RC), roller compacted concrete (RCC), asphalt
concrete, steel or other metals. The clay core may be thin or thick, located in the
middle or near the u/s face, may be vertical or inclined.
External u/s face. The membrane is located at the u/s face of the rockfill dam (Fig.
4.43). The membrane materials include cement concrete, RCC, steel, timber, stone
/ rubble or PCC masonry, asphalt concrete.
















A and E: Rockfill
B and D: graded filter / transition
C: Vertical internal seepage control
membrane (earth core)
D
Figure 4.41 A typical rockfill dam section with vertical internal seepage control membrane
E
C
B
A
A and E: Rockfill
B and D: graded filter / transition
C: Inclined internal seepage control
membrane (earth core)
D
Figure 4.42. A typical rockfill dam section with inclined internal seepage control membrane
E
C
B
A
E1 E2
E3
E1 small size rocks
E2 medium size rocks
E3 large size rocks
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-72
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams










Figure 4.44: Glennies Creek Dam (67 meters high, concrete faced rock fill dam CFRD) on
Glennies Creek. [Source: http://members.optusnet.com.au/~richardw2/projects.html]


A- seepage control and face
protection membrane
B- membrane bedding layer
C- random fill of low quality
rock
D- rockfill of best quality
rock
C
D
Figure 4.43 A typical rockfill dam section with external seepage control membrane
A
B
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-73
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Figure 4.45: Rockfill dam: d/s view.
4.22 CONDITIONS FAVORING CHOICE OF ROCKFILL DAM
Large quantities of rock usually readily available from structural excavation or a
nearby quarry site.
Earth materials are difficult to obtain or require expensive + extensive processing.
Short construction season (allows simultaneous during unfavorable weather as
excess moisture not an issue for u/s face membrane dams).
Excessive wet climate restricting placement of earth materials
The dam is to be raised at a later time
Rockfill can be placed during rainy season. Grouting foundation can be done
simultaneously with embankment placement.
Diversion floods are very large and large diversion arrangements very costly. The
flood can flow through/over the dam without failure or with small damage.
Uplift pressure and erosion due to seepage not a significant design problem
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-74
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Short structure base lengths due to steeper slopes
Short coffer dam (can be placed within the gorge length) and also overtopping can
be permitted.
4.23 EMBANKMENT DETAILS
4.23.1 Materials
The design of the rockfill dam depends on placement and materials of the seepage
control membrane. The typical sections are shown in Figs. 4.41 to 4.43.
U/s Face membrane
A. Face protection
B. Membrane bedding layer of Well graded small size rock/gravel
C. Random fill-low quality Lesser quality excavation materials
D. Best quality rock Best quality large size this section provide high stability to
dam
Internal membrane
A+E Rockfill
B+D Graded filter/transition (One or more zones)
C Earth core
Selection depends on availability of rock
Smaller size rocks close to filter/transition zones
Larger size rock of highest quality on u/s & d/s slope
Thin earth core as vertical or inclined
4.23.2 Traditional vs Present Design
Breitenbach 2007 summarized historical record rockfill placement and compaction
indicates 4 milestones in rockfill dam construction. The first milestone included the use of
low level hand placed rockfill dumps with timber facing on the upstream slope in the 1850s
for water storage and gold sluicing operations. The second milestone included a gradual
increase in water storage dam heights to over 300 feet (100 m) high using thick dry and loose
rockfill dump lift placement by trucks or draglines without compaction into the 1940s. The
third milestone included the use of high-pressure water jets and flooding techniques to wet
and consolidate the thick loose rockfill dump lifts to achieve up to 85 percent of total dam
settlement before reservoir filling from the 1940s into the 1950s. The fourth milestone
included control of rockfill lift thickness with dozer spreading and roller compaction, in
addition to documentation of rockfill gradation, moisture, and density in large-scale test fills
from the 1960s to the present day.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-75
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams



Figure 4.46: Rockfill embankment traditional construction technique. Top: Rock dump loose
lift placement in 45 ft (15 m) thickness. Bottom: Rock segregation with boulders at
bottom of rock dump lift (Breitenbach 2007)
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-76
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams



Figure 4.47: Present day construction of rockfill embankment. Top: 0.5 m thick rockfill lift
placement by haul truck and dozer. Bottom: Fill lift compaction with steel smooth
drum vibratory roller. (Breitenbach 2007)
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-77
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.48: Wetting and compacting 2 ft (0.6 m) thick loose rockfill lift with 20 ton
vibratory compactor roller 2005

Figure 4.49: Rockfill bulk density test. (L) - 1 m diameter plate for large scale rockfill
sample. (M) - Water replacement test in hand excavated and lined hole, (R) - Bulk
gradation test on excavated rockfill materials. (Breitenbach 2007)
Traditional design (Dumped rockfill)
Rocks dumped in high lifts 30 to 60 ft.
No compaction-point to point bearing
Smaller size rocks sluiced with high pressure water volume 2-4 times rock vol.
(dirty rock need more water) Sluicing with 2-4 inch dia nozzles.
Rock angular corners break easily on wetting and thus denser packing
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-78
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Settlement is caused due to wetting and rock mass weight + rock thrust on rolling
down the slope + height of drop
U/s hand or derrick placed rock zone or rubble masonry required to form support
for face membrane.
Present design (Compacted rockfill)
Rock material dumped in thin layers, spreaded by dozers and compacted by
vibratory rollers of 5 to 50 ton capacity. Lift varies 1 to 2 m only.
Has very small post construction settlement.
Wide range of rock (size, quality) may be used
Concurrent work in adjacent areas unaffected
4.23.3 U/s and d/s Face Slopes
Slopes depend on type and location of membrane. Slopes evolved from steep (0.5
H: 1V) to flat (1.3-1.7:1)
Steep slopes used to minimize rock volume and cost
Steep slopes possible with u/s face membrane
For past design the steep slopes were stabilized by thick crane-placed dry rubble
masonry (and which provide as support zone for the bedding layer for u/s
membrane). No derrick/crane placed rock work required for present design
Slope flattened to match angle of repose
Central sloping core: 2:1 to 4:1 both u/s & d/s (flatter slopes for central core)
U/S face membrane: concrete u/s 1.3-1.7:1, d/s natural angle (1.3 1.4 :1),
Asphalt concrete face 1.6 1.7:1, Steel, u/s 1.3-1.4:1, D/s 1.3- 1.4
4.23.4 Rock Quality
Hard, durable and able to withstand disintegration due to weathering.
Resist excessive breakage due to quarrying (rock blasted at quarry), loading,
hauling and placing operations
Free of unstable minerals
Individual rocks of uniform size for good rock-to-rock contact.
Igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic rocks all used successively.
Each dam site a unique problem, thus General guidelines only.
Rock quality determined by lab tests and/or in-situ inspections of weathering
marks at the rock quarry site.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-79
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Test embankment to answer i. Use of marginal materials, ii. Performance of
materials during compaction operation, iii. Correct compaction equipment, iv.
Number of passes, v. Correct lift for each material
4.23.5 Rock Sources
Rock can be obtained from many sources as: Excavation for foundations, structures,
spillway, stilling basin, tunnels, underground power houses etc., Quarry rock near dam site,
Talus slopes, etc. Angular rock fragments can be obtained from the from river bed if
cobbles/boulders
4.23.6 Rock Size
Use Rock of sp gravity = 2.67 2.94+, weight not less than 160 lb/cft = 2560 kg/m3
Past Design
Zone B: Mix. of: (between bedding layer and C
zone see figure)
40% - quarry chip to 1000 lbs (375 kg) of
compressive strength > 350 kg/cm
2
30% 1000-3000 lbs (1/2 to 1.5 tons
having 0.45 to 0.75 m size)
(5000 psi)
30% 3000-14000 lb (1.5 to 6 tons of 0.75 to 1.25 m size)
<3 % quarry dust
Maximum dimension not more than 3 times min dimension
Zone D: Extra large rock
50% > 14000 lbs (4.5 ft)
50% 6000 14000 lbs (3.25 to 4.5 ft)
Max dimension not more than 4 times minimum dimension
Zone C: Random quality rock as Mix.
Quarry chips to 14000 lbs
Present design with compacted layers
(I) With u/s face membrane (A):
D Good quality rock of 1 cft to 1 cubic yard
size, No slaby rocks (to avoid bridging), well
graded, minimum finer part.
C Low quality: 3 to 1 cft
B C
D
C
D
A
B
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-80
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

B Bedding layer: 3 to provide smooth uniform bearing surface for the u/s face
membrane
Note: (1) For C D zones fine rock placed nearer to u/s face and coarse rock nearer to d/s.
Strongest material is placed in lower part of zone D to improve stability. The internal
friction angle decreases with rock size and confining pressure.
(2) The lift (lift = fill height) should be at least twice the size of the largest rock. The
B zone is dumped in 30 cm (1 ft) lifts, leveled and compacted with crawler or
vibratory rollers. The C and D zones are dumped with 1 m and 1-2 m lifts,
respectively and compacted with vibratory rollers. The material is thoroughly wetted
during truck dumping time (but not sluiced) before compaction.
(3) For asphalt face, a thin B zone is enough, and compaction is done by smooth drum
vibratory rollers up the face.
(II) With Central core:
The u/s and d/s rock shell provide support to the core. Thus strongest and large rocks
in d/s rockfill shell/zones. The u/s shell may be formed of lesser quality rock. For both u/s
and d/s shells, the smaller size rock is placed nearer and adjacent to the core while larger size
rocks is placed towards the outer faces. The rock material placed on u/s and d/s face to be of
sufficient size and quality to satisfy the riprap requirements. No bedding layer is required
below the riprap due to sufficient porous nature of the rockfill.
General grading of rock material as: 0-10% - 0.6 mm, 0-40% -5 mm, 0-65% - 19 mm,
22-100% - 76 mm, 60-100% - 305 mm, 100 % - 610 mm.
The u/s and d/s shell rockfill is compacted in 1 m lifts with vibratory rollers. The
sluicing is done in such a way that will not clog filters or impermeable materials washed
away.
The filter/transition zones are compacted in 30 cm lifts by crawler or vibratory rollers.
The width of filter zone should be enough for placing and compaction. Filters materials
prevent piping of the impervious materials into the rock shells.
The core is compacted in 15 cm layers and compacted by sheep foot rollers +
vibratory or tamping rollers. The top surface is scarify / roughened before the next layer to
obtain an effective bond. The core material to have enough plasticity index to allow the core
to deform without cracking.
4.23.7 Rockfill Dam: Overflow and through Flow
Flow through rock voids
Unsupported d/s slope liable to erode and collapse
Provide an anchorage system to support d/s face
If larger rocks at d/s face, then no support needed
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-81
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Grid of steel bars anchored by tie back rods extending horizontally into the rock
mass (12 to 20 mm rods 30 cm vertical spacing and 1-1.5 m horizontal spacing)
Alternatively slope stabilization by concrete slabs, asphalt concrete membranes,
long flat berm of heavy rock also useful


Figure 4.50: Steel mesh being installed on downstream rock fill face of Windamere Dam as
protection against overtopping during diversion. In the background the impermeable brown
clay core of the dam can be seen under construction. (Source:
http://members.optusnet.com.au/~engineeringgeologist/page11.html)
4.23.8 Test Embankment
Laboratory tests (abrasion resistance, freeze-thaw characteristics, water
absorption) used to evaluate suitability of rock.
Petrographic analysis for minerals identification and rock weathering potential.
Unconfined or triaxial tests for strength evaluation.
In-situ examination of rock to check weathering condition.
Test embankment to evaluate performance of rocks with questionable properties.
It is used to determine following issues
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-82
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

- use or not of marginal materials
- performance of selected materials during compaction operations
- correct type of compaction equipment for each material
- required number of compaction passes for each material
- correct lift thickness for each material
- effects of particle crushing
4.24 FOUNDATION
4.24.1 Foundation Requirements
Foundation requirements for rockfill dam is more severe than earthfill dam but less
severe than concrete gravity dam. Hard erosion resistant bed rock is most suitable. Rockfill
dams are not suitable in soft foundation of sand, silt and clay. Foundation with river gravel +
rock fragments is acceptable (A positive cutoff must to bed rock to control seepage).
Foundation is treated for minimum dam settlement. Filters to protect migration of fines from
the foundation into rockfill.
For rock foundation grouting is done to seal-off rock imperfections. If geology of the
foundation is unknown, complete grouting is done, and shallow grouting may be enough if
geology permits. For cobbles-gravel-sand foundation the under seepage through the
foundation is minimized by providing a positive cutoff. For a deep foundation a partial cutoff
(concrete, metal, sheet pile etc) is provided in upper part with cement grouting beneath the
cutoff. Some grouting may be needed into the rock below the positive cutoff. Post
construction grouting may be required depending on seepage measurements of first few years
if reservoir can be drawn down to the bottom. Cutoffs Provides leakage control, facilitate
grouting operation (as grout cap), provide water tight seal with membrane, and take
downward thrust of membrane
4.24.2 Foundation Preparation
Rockfill dams usually founded on some type of rock
Rock may be exposed at surface or buried
Stripping of shallow over burden of sand-gravel-cobbles foundation under the
core (3-5 m deep) to form a key trench. For other areas e.g. under the shells, the
foundations strength may be more than dam fill material, thus no need to strip or
excavate.
Shallow clay-silt-sand foundation to be stripped for entire dam base (core and
shells)
Over hangs in foundation and abutment be eliminated
Trimming/excavation not to damage bed rock
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-83
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Large depressions below desired bottom contours filled with dental concrete
Foundation preparation is less severe under rock shells
Prominent rock projection removed.
4.24.3 Grouting
Minimize seepage through dam foundation
Reduce hydrostatic pressure under d/s portion of dam (usually not a problem for
clear rocks)
Eliminate piping through dam foundation
Blanket and curtain grouting in and adjacent to core foundation area
Fractured/faulted rocks upper 30 ft blanket grouted to prevent piping of fines from
core into rock crevices
Single or multiple line of grout under core
Grouting pressure to avoid fracturing or moving of rocks.
4.25 SEEPAGE MEMBRANE
4.25.1 Options
Seepage membrane is required to stop the seepage through the dam embankment.
Central core (vertical or sloping/inclined) or u/s membrane are used for this purposes. The
materials for the membrane include reinforced cement concrete (RC), roller compacted
concrete (RCC), steel, timber, stone / rubble or PCC masonry, asphalt concrete for u/s face
membrane and earth/clay, reinforced cement concrete RC, RCC, steel, stone / rubble or PCC
masonry, asphalt concrete for central core dams. Economic and safety analysis is done to
choose type and design of the membrane. The advantages and disadvantages vary according
to type, materials available, and foundation condition.
Advantages of Internal membranes
- Less total area exposed to water (due to steep slope)
- Shorter grout curtain length (shorter axis length at shortest line of dam
axis)
- Potential safety from weathering and external damages
- Core location precisely known (a plus point when additional grouting
works may be needed in future)
Disadvantages of Internal membrane
- Simultaneous construction is must both for membrane and rockfill.
- Inaccessibility to inspection and damage repair
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-84
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

- Small dam base for stability against sliding
- Need flatter dam shell side slope if E/F core
- Filters/transition zone required for earth core
- Adequate construction control required if several filter zones are required
due to coarse shell.
- Through and over flow not permitted
Advantages of u/s membrane
- Readily available for inspection and repair
- Membrane can be constructed after rockfill section
- Foundation grouting can be performed simultaneously with rockfill dam
- Large portion of dam base for sliding stability
- Membrane works as slope protection
- Dam raising easy
- Flow through dam body permitted during dam construction
4.25.2 Membrane Design Internal Core
1: Earth Core
Impervious Central Core of Earth
Enough quantity of earthfill available for core
Used when u/s abutments widely apart in comparison to dam axis length
Or show highly weathered rock to great depth and require adequate grouting
/cutoff.
Or higher elevation of abutment with deep layers of overburden thus trench type
installation less economical
Design same as for earthfill dam, seepage and stability analysis required.
Material placed in 6 lifts and compacted by tampering rollers
Core material to have enough plasticity to allow it to deform without cracking on
dam deflection.
Filter zones provided (one or multiple zone of 8-15 ft thick)
Foundations and abutments opposite to core be treated to prevent piping
Joints, cracks, fissures in core area be cleaned out and filled with concrete or
grouted; additional future grouting of foundation can be carried from dam crest.
Vertical side faces/overhangs of abutments trimmed to 1H:2V
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-85
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Bottom width 0.5 h to 2.5 h
U/s and d/s slopes symmetrical (0.3 H:1V 1.5H:1V), or u/s flatter than d/s face.
Dam slopes as x+1 H:1V (minimum 2:1) [x = core slope]
Chimney/blanket drain to drain off seepage flow (from the earth core and other
core / membranes.
Location is central vertical position











Sloping Earth Cores
These core located closer to u/s face, almost paralleling the u/s face
Filter zones on u/s & d/s of core
Provide more stability against sliding (provide better transfer of water pressure to
foundation and d/s shell)
Usually thin width, width decreases at top
Bottom width 30 to 50 ft
Top width 15 to 20 ft
Advantages: grouting cutoff can be at same of d/s fill placement
U/S face: core = 1.4H:1V Dam: u/s face 2:1 or flatter, d/s face = 1.4:1
Core can be placed after initial settlement of rockfill (less subsequent cracking
risk)
Section better to pass flood flows as through flow (d/s anchoring needed)
1
1
1
1
> 2
2
1.4
1.9
Z
> Z
Figure 4.51: : Sloping earth core rockfill dams.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-86
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Due to lower contact pressure at foundation more susceptible to seepage and
piping
Additional grouting, if required difficult as foundation contact area likely under
water.
Works as u/s earth face rockfill dam with face protected by dumped quarry rock.
Moderate Sloping earth core
U/s 0.5H;1V to 0.9 H:1 V, d/s 0.5:1
Moderately sloping core has clear advantage with respect to arching
U/S dam slope can be made steeper than for extremely sloping core for stability
reason
2 Other Materials for Central Core
Limited success due to rigid nature
Reinforced Concrete
6 ft at bottom to 1 ft at top
Large deflection (e.g. at one dam 9 ft in 4
years & additional 5 ft in next 38 years)
Core cracking due to lateral movement of shell
Use of concrete practically discontinued
Concrete cutoff in foundation and extending partially into impervious earth core
used in modern dam to improve contact and seepage control and sliding safety.
Steel Diaphragm
Centrally located
Deterioration of steel due to water contact (oxidation, corrosion, potting, holes)
Impossibility of repairing
Limited used in few installation
Bituminous Material
Used for small height dams
Thin cores 40-100 cm in thickness
Transition zone to provide uniform support and for filter, if any leakage/rupture
Can be vertical or slightly inclined

Earth core
Concrete
cutoff
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-87
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams



Figure 4.52: Top: Cross section of an asphalt core rockfill dam in Norway that was
constructed with an only one meter thick. Very high quality control is necessary for
such a thin core. Bottom: Construction.
[Source:
http://cee.engr.ucdavis.edu/faculty/boulanger/geo_photo_album/Embankment%20da
ms/Zoned%20rockfill%20dams/Zoned%20rockfill%20-%20main.html]
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-88
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure: Mirani dam u/s face protection by concrete.
4.25.3 U/s face membrane
Concrete Faced Rockfill Dam (CFRD)
RCC slabs placed at face over bedding layer
Slab thickness and reinforcement requirements by experience, precedent and
judgment
Criteria
- Low permeability
- Sufficient strength to permit large subsided areas beneath the facing
- High resistant to weathering
- Flexible to adjust to small embankment settlements
Best suited for compacted rockfill dams due to lesser chance of settlement and
deflection.
Well compacting bedding layer (4+4+8 passes) reduce bridging requirements and
provide more uniform support to the face layer.
Concrete to be dense, durable, weather/chemical resistant
Slab placed in blocks 20-60 ft square
Horizontal + vertical expansion joints and construction joints are provided. Gaps
filled with flexible bitumen.
Metal or rubber water stops (1 or more layers) in joints
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-89
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Concrete facing result in smooth surface and increase wave run up (but due to
steeper slopes, net run up may not increase much)
Coping or parapet walls (5-10 ft) (Fig. 4. (a)) in continuation of face concrete to
reduce height of embankment by containing wave run up.
Concrete placement by slip forming process
Shortcrete (roller compacted concrete RCC) may also be used
Facing provided after dam construction (to allow dam settlement)
Concrete facing anchored to the foundation cutoff wall through continuous
reinforcement (Fig. 4. (b))
May be anchored to flat bottom with dowel anchored footwall which also serve as
grout cap (Fig. 4 (c)).
Slabs 20-60 ft square slip formed; Contraction joints horizontal
Minimum temperature reinforcement 5%
Thickness tapered t =0.3 +0.002h (min 1.5 at base to 1 at top) [KTD 6.6 ft to 1
ft over 315 ft height)











Parapet wall
Concrete
face slab
Dam crest
Original
ground
surface
Foot wall min
1 m thick
dowel
Min 1m
Grout curtain
Cutoff
(a)
(b) (c)
Figure 4.53 : u/s face concrete slab.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-90
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Figure 4.54: concrete face slab construction work by slip forming. Note the reinforcement
and machine control. [@ http://www.dur.ac.uk/~des0www4/cal/dams/emba/embaf23.htm]
Asphaltic Concrete
provides more flexibility and tolerates larger settlement
Dam u/s slope 1.7:1 or flatter for easy placement
Good bedding layer to eliminate uplift pressures and piping if cracks
If bedding layer B zone not used , provide a 6 thick leveling layer to fill surface
voids, provide easy travel of paving machinery, and smooth bedding surface for
asphalt membrane
Penetration coat over leveling layer to bind and stabilize it
Membrane thickness 20 to 25 cm. Asphalt 8.5% by weight of dry aggregates
Standard road paver used and asphalt placed in 3 layers
Seal coat on the finished surface (for water proofing) and increased durability
Placed in 3 to 4 m (10-12) wide strip at right angle to dam axis
Paving placed on upslope pass only
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-91
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Rolling operation follow placement
Smooth wheel rollers, vibratory or tandem type
Layers compacted to min of 97% density
Tight joints between adjacent strips
Transverse joints minimum and complete as hot joints
Cold joints by (a) apply tack coat (b) overlap 10-15 cm (3-6) joints (c) reheat
joint with infrared heating (no open flames) (d) compact joints by rolling after
heating.
Joints offset by 1-1.5 m (3-4) from joints of bottom layers
Formation cutoff allow easy placement
Membrane must be durable, flexible, impervious, does not creep, and resist
weathering
Membrane material must satisfy: sieve analysis, immersion + unconfined
compression test, Sustained load test, Permeability, Wave action test
Special tests may be needed as: Slope flow, Coefficient of expansion, Flexural
strength and Effect of reservoir ice
Parapet walls may be used to contain wave action
Steel Face
Used on few dams
Performance satisfactory
Can be rapidly constructed
Can tolerate greater embankment reverts
Disadvantage-probability of corrosion
Cathodic protection on both faces of plates
Proper maintenance can made facing as permanent
Dam u/s Slopes 1.3-1.7





Original ground surface
Backfill
Cutoff
Asphalt membrane
Rockfill embankment
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-92
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

















Steeper slopes construction difficulties
Plate anchored to embankment by steel anchor rods grouted in bedding material
Plate raised on a scaffolding, grid, bedding material placed after or during plate
construction
Plate thickness -3/8
Jointed by bolts or continuous fillet weld,
Expansion joints provided at regular interval
Coping walls can be used to retard over splash
4.26 SEISMIC DESIGN
Low seismic activity require no additional provisions
Note: No exact rules for dam design in earthquake regions.
Fact: Large d/s zone of quarried rock placed in thin layers provide maximum
stability
For Moderate seismic activity areas, provide:
Original ground surface
Backfill
Cutoff min 1m
Grout curtain
Steel plate
Rockfill embankment
Figure 4.56 Steel membrane
Anchor dowel
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-93
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

- Large d/s zone of good quality rock
- D/s slope flattened to 1.7:1 in all cases
- For additional conservation u/s slope may also be flattered
- Foundation must be firm rock/blanket grouting
- Free draining cobbles/boulders/rock fragments (if compaction same as
rockfill) may be used.
- Provide trench type cutoff
- Provide thicker bedding zone
- Use better quality rock in C zone (routine is random fill of poor quality
rock)
- Limit lift thickness to max of 3 in zone D
- Use a thicker membrane on U/S.

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-94
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

REFERENCES AND BIBLIOGRAPHY

Breitenbach 2007. History of rockfill dam construction: Parts 1 and 2. @
http://www.geoengineer.org/ rockfill1.htm, rockfill2.htm (as on 16 Jun 2007)


Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-95
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

QUESTIONS
1. A homogeneous dam has following data. Total height = 80 m, Free board = 5 m, u/s
face slope = 2.5:1, d/s slope face = 2:1, Crest width = 5 m, Foundation thickness = 25
m, K of dam fill material = 5 x 10
-6
m/s, K of foundation material = 2 x 10
-7
2. The attached Figure shows section of an earthfill dam at its maximum depth showing
steady seepage phreatic line, equipotential lines, a trial slip surface. Scale: 1 block =
5x5 m.
m/s. Tail
water depth = zero. Draw seepage flow net and determine the seepage rates through
the dam and foundation. Assume seepage from dam do not enter into foundation and
vive versa. Also determine uplift pressure at base of the dam.
Dam height = 60 m, depth at normal conservation level = 55 m, U/s slope = 2:1, d/s
slope = 2:1, Core uniform width = 20 m, core height = 55 m. The material properties
are as:
Core: c = 12 KPa, = 29, average unit weight = 21 KN/m
3
, K = 3 x 10
-5
Fill: c = 5 KPa, = 33, = 19 KN/m
cm/s.
3
, K = 5 x 10
-4
Determine the factor of safety for the d/s face for steady seepage condition for the
shown slip surface by using method of slices.
cm/s.


9




1
2




1
4




1
6




1
8




2
0




2
2




2
4




2
6




2
8




3
0




3
0




3
2




3
4




3
6




3
7




3
8




3
9




4
0




4
0




4
2




4
4




4
5




4
6



















3. Repeat Q-1 by using SEEP/W program.
4. Repeat Q-2 by using SEEP/W and SLOPE/W computer programs.

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-96
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-97
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.61: Dynamic compaction, Townsville Australia.

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-98
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.62: Mangrove Creek concrete faced Rock Fill dam
(http://www.ipenz.org.nz/nzsold/NZSOLD-Newsletter-46-Text.pdf)

Figure 4.63: 125 m high Storglomvatn Rockfill dam with asphalt concrete core
(http://www.ngi.no) 125 m high RF dam with asphalt concrete core.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-99
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams



Figure 4.64:
Zoned Rockfill Dams in Norway Dams constructed of soil, of rock, or of a
combination of soil and rock are called embankment dams. Embankment dams are most
economical where the materials at the dam site can be used to construct the embankment with
little or no processing. Small embankment dams can be built of a single type of soil, which
must hold back the water and provide enough strength for stability of the embankment. Large
dams are usually zoned, with fine soils (silts or clays) at the center of the dam (the core)
to hold back the water, and sand, gravel or rockfill in the upstream and downstream parts of
the dam (the shells) to provide the strength needed for stability of the embankment.This
photo shows a cross section through a zoned rockfill dam in Norway. The yellow zones
downstream from the green core are the filter and the drain. The filter is graded to hold the
particles within the core in place, while allowing seeping water to pass freely. The drains
have high enough permeability to carry the seepage without allowing any significant pore
water pressures to develop in the downstream parts of the dam. The rockfill shells are shown
in orange. The gray zone between the drains and the shells is a transition zone, used to
make economical use of as much of the soil at the site as possible. The steep slopes indicate
that the rockfill of which the shells are constructed has a high angle of internal friction.
(http://cee.engr.ucdavis.edu/faculty/boulanger/geo_photo_album/Embankment%20dams/Zoned%20rockfill%20
dams/Zoned%20rockfill%20-%20main.html)

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-100
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.65: Mohali dam, Lesotho (http://www.trc.org.ls)

Fig 4.66: Kouris EF dam, Cyprus. (http://www.flickr.com/photos/lemessoler/2155179591/)
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-101
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Fig 4.67: Windamere Dam (69 metres high, earth and rock fill dam) on the Cudgegong
River near Mudgee. Geotechnical problems included excessive grout takes in highly fractured
rock in dam foundation. The spillway was an unlined cutting in andesite about 1 km from the
dam site and supplied the entire rock fill requirement for the construction of the dam
embankment. If a spillway had been built in the weathered sedimentary rocks at the dam site
full concrete lining would have been required.
Windamere Dam earth and rock fill embankment. The dam foundations are weathered
Devonian conglomerates, sandstones and shales. The spillway is located about 1km away
from the dam in mostly unweathered Ordovician andesite. The spillway is an unlined rock
cutting that provided all the rock fill required for the construction of the dam embankment.
The access road bridge over the spillway cutting is just visible in the upper left of the photo
http://members.optusnet.com.au/~richardw2/img/wind3.jpg

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-102
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Fig 4.68: The dam wall of the Upper Yarra Reservoir which is a rolled earthfill and rockfill
embankment and is 610 metres long and 90 metres high.
(http://www.flickr.com/photos/splatt/357903508/)



Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-1
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Chapter 4
EARTHFILL AND ROCKFILL EMBANKMENT DAMS
4.1 DEFINITION
International Commission on Large Dams (ICOLD) defined embankment dam as any
dam constructed of excavated materials placed without addition of binding material other
than those inherent in the natural material. The materials are usually obtained at or near the
dam site. An Earthfill Dam is an embankment dam, constructed primarily of compacted
earth materials, either homogeneous or zoned, and containing more than 50% of earth
granular materials. Contrary a Rockfill Dam is an embankment dam constructed of natural
rock materials, usually broken down to smaller fragments. Rockfill dam with all voids filled
by finer materials by hydraulic sluicing is usually regarded as earth-fill dam. An embankment
dam where large quantities of both granular materials (earth) and rock fragments are used is
called as Earthfill-Rockfill Dam.

Example of embankment dam, Stratos Dam, Greece (http://www.geoengineer.org)
I: EARTHFILL DAMS
4.2 GENERAL DESIGN CRITERIA:
Embankment dams are built to meet the following design criteria (Golze 1977 P-291,
Novak 19** P-59):
1. Stability: The foundation, abutments and embankments must be stable for all loading/
stress conditions during construction, and operation. Some distress can be tolerated
during construction.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-2
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

2. Control of Seepage: Seepage through embankment, foundation and abutments must
be small and not exert excessive uplift on the structure, create high exit gradients,
piping not permitted.
3. Overtopping and Free Board: Top of dam must be high enough to allow for
settlement of dam and foundation and to provide sufficient free board to prevent
waves at maximum pond level (during maximum flood, e.g. spillway design flood)
from overtopping the dam.
4. Maximum Flood Evacuation: Spillway and outlet capacity be large enough to
prevent overtopping of the dam (Spillway only, no other outlets) even when few (at
least one) spillway gate become stuck/inoperative.
5. Upstream Slope Protection: Slope of embankment and outlet works be stable under
all operational conditions (first filling, quick drawdown, steady pond etc). Cuts into
rock masses for placing spillway must be stable under earthquake conditions.
6. Outlet and Ancillary Works: Care must be taken to ensure that outlet or other
facilities constructed through the dam do not permit their perimeter with risk of soil
migration and piping. Same care is needed at embankment joints with abutments.
7. Stability against uplift under structures: Seepage under the various structures as
spillway, chute, stilling basins, power house, exert lot of uplift pressure, thus these
structure must be safe for this condition.
4.3 PLACEMENT OF FILL MATERIALS
Huge quantities of fill material of varying gradation are placed to form the
embankment. The embankment materials of a dam may be placed as a rolled fill or hydraulic
fill.
Rolled fill. The embankment material of requisite grading is transported to site by hauling
machinery, placed at specific locations in layers, rolled out by earth moving
machinery into layers of suitable thickness, watered and compacted by plain or sheep-
foot rollers to requisite density.
Hydraulic fill. The material containing all grades and sizes are thoroughly blended, mixed
with water, transported to site in suspension by pumps and pipes and discharged at the
dam edge in inward direction. The material gets deposited by sedimentation. Thus the
coarser particles get deposited near the edges and finer particles reach to the middle
section. The fill is usually not further compacted.
Semi-Hydraulic fill. The material in suspension is transported by hauling units and dumped
at the edge of the embankment. It is then washed in its final position by water jets.
Drainage of hydraulic fill. The excess water reaching inner part of dam percolates
horizontally to outer more pervious shell. Remainder water rises upward to the
surface, allowing the center of dam to consolidate and subside. The downward
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-3
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

movement of the core eventfully develops arching in the core and prevents its further
consolidation.
4.4 TYPE OF EARTHFILL DAMS
Earthfill dams can be of types as Homogeneous, Zoned and Diaphragm dam.
4.4.1 Homogeneous Dams
The dam embankment is made of a single type of material (Fig. 4.1). These include
fine-grained particles or coarse-grained materials. The materials are compacted mechanically
to form a watertight fill. The fill material is required to possess following properties

1
It must be capable of being placed and consolidated to form a homogeneous mass
without any potential of piping as paths of percolation through the fill or along its
contact with the foundation and abutments.
:It must be sufficiently impervious to provide an adequate barrier and prevent
excessive loss of water through the dam, the acceptable level being determined from
the safety of the structure and the value of the lost water.
The fill material should develop maximum practical shear strength under compaction
and maintain most of it after the filling of the reservoir.
It must not consolidate, soften or liquefy upon saturation.
Due to relatively finer materials, the slopes must be able to avoid sloughing. The u/s slope is
relatively flat to ensure safety against sloughing under rapid drawdown conditions after
prolonged high-level storage. The d/s slope must be protected to resist sloughing when
saturated to a high level by rainfall.







For a completely homogeneous embankment, the seepage will eventually emerge on
the d/s slope regardless of its flatness and the impermeability of the soil if reservoir level is
maintained for a sufficiently long time. The surface to the height of 1/3
rd

1
(@ www.dur.ac.uk/~des0www4/cal/dams/emba.htm/embaf1.htm)
of depth of the
reservoir will be eventually affected. The exit of seepage may induce sloughing of the dam
toe and consequently the dam embankment. Thus measures are included to intercept the
H/3
H
Seepage
Figure 4.1: Seepage through an earthfill homogeneous dam.
Phreatic/Seepage line
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-4
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

seepage flow before it reaches the d/s slope. Such a dam is then called as modified
homogeneous dam (Figs. 4.2 to 4.4). These measures include rockfill toe, horizontal d/s
drainage blanket, and a vertical or inclined chimney drain. These measures do not decrease
the seepage amount but makes the seepage exit safer with no danger of dam toe failure. A toe
drain (Fig. 4.5) is usually used in conjunction with these seepage control measures to
intercept the seepage flow and its disposal.
A homogeneous embankment should not be used for storage dam. A homogeneous
type of dam is applicable in localities where readily available soils show little or no variation
is permeability and soils of contrasting permeability are available only in minor amounts or at
considerably greater cost.






















Figure 4.3: Modified homogeneous dam with d/s horizontal drainage blanket.
H
Seepage
Phreatic/Seepage line
Figure 4.4: Modified homogeneous dam with a chimney drain and d/s horizontal drainage blanket.
H
Seepage
Phreatic/Seepage line
H
Seepage
Figure 4.2: Modified homogeneous dam with rockfill toe and graded filter.
Phreatic/Seepage line
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-5
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams











4.4.2 Zoned Embankment Dam
A zoned embankment dam is constructed of materials of more than two types. The
zoned dam has a central zone of impermeable materials flanked by zones of materials
considerably more pervious called shell or shoulders. The inner zone is usually called a core.
The shell materials enclose, support and protect the impervious core. The u/s shell provides
stability against rapid drawdown and d/s shall acts as drain to control the line of seepage. The
section as a whole show progressive increase in permeability from the center outwards
towards each slope. The core is flanked by one or more zones of graded filter.
The central impervious zone consists of clay and outer shell consists of sand, gravel,
cobbles or rock or mixture of these materials. If rock is used in shell, it is then called as
earthfill-rockfill dam (Tarbela, Mangla dams). The dam is considered as zoned dam only if
the horizontal width of the impervious zone at any elevation equals or exceeds the height of
the dam above that elevation, and is not less than 10 feet (Fig. 4.6). The maximum width of
the core is controlled by stability and seepage criteria and the availability of the material. The
outer shall due to coarse nature and good drainage, may have relatively steeper outer slope,
limited only by the strength of the foundation, the stability of the embankment itself and
maintenance/construction considerations. For better stability of a section, longer haulage of
materials may be preferred. Graded filters are provided on u/s and d/s sides of the core which
Rockfill toe or horizontal drainage blanket
Fine rock or
sand/gravel fill
Graded gravel or
crushed rock
Toe drain
Figure 4.5: Toe drain for use with rockfill toe or horizontal drainage blanket.
Dam d/s slope
H
U/S
Shell
CORE
D/S
Shell
Seepage
Filter
Figure 4.6: A zoned earthfill dam.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-6
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

acts as chimney drain. The d/s graded filter is connected with d/s horizontal drainage blanket
and toe drain for seepage outflow.
When a variety of soil materials are available, the choice of an earthfill dam should
always be a zoned embankment type because of its inherent advantage in reduced cost of
construction. The necessary arrangements are required to collect and dispose off any seepage
that does cross the impervious central zone.
4.4.3 Diaphragm Dam
This dam is similar to a zoned embankment dam with the exception that a thin
diaphragm of impervious material is provided to form a water barrier (Fig. 4.7). The bulk of
the embankment is constructed of pervious material (sand, gravel or rock). The position of
the diaphragm may vary from a blanket on the u/s face to a central vertical core. The
diaphragm may be made of earth/clay, Portland cement concrete, asphalt concrete or other
material. If the diaphragm material is earth, the horizontal thickness of the diaphragm at any
elevation is less than 10 feet or the height of the embankment above the corresponding
elevation of the dam (W h and W 10 ft). In some cases the diaphragm may be inclined.
Necessary arrangement for drainage of seepage flow is required. Graded filters are provided
on u/s and d/s sides of the core, which acts as chimney drain. The d/s graded filter is
connected with d/s horizontal drainage blanket and toe drain for seepage outflow.
The core may be vertical oriented or inclined. It can be placed near the u/s face, in the
center, or near the d/s face. The u/s and d/s faces of earthfill dam are protected by suitable
riprap.







A thin core dam becomes more economical for reasons as:
Unit cost of placing impervious materials may be more than the unit cost of placing
pervious materials.
The amount of embankment volume can be reduced in a thin core dam more effectively.
The construction time available and weather conditions may not permit the use of an
impervious core of large thickness.
H
U/S
Shell
C
O
R
E

D/S
Shell
Seepage
Filter
Figure 4.7: A diaphragm earthfill dam with central vertical core.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-7
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

The minimum thickness of core depends on a number of factors on:
1. the tolerable seepage loss;
2. minimum width which will allow proper construction (machinery considerations);
3. type of materials chosen for the core and shoulders;
4. design of proposed filter layers;
5. past experience of similar projects.
Vertical Core
The core is inclined vertical (Fig. 4.7) and is usually located in alignment with the
crest of the dam.
Advantages of vertical core
Higher pressure exists on the contact between core and the foundation, and will provide
more protection against the possibility of leakage along the contact.
Vertical core tends to be slightly thicker for a given quantity of impervious soil than the
thickness of the sloping core.
Criteria
Cores with width of 30 to 50% dam height prove satisfactory under diverse conditions.
Core with width of 15 to 20% (thin) if constructed adequately is satisfactory under most
condition.
Core with less than 10% used only if large leaks through the core would not cause dam
failure.







Inclined Core
The inclined core is oriented at an angle with the base of the dam. The core is located
closer to the u/s face of the dam with top of core aligned with the dam crest (Fig. 4.8).
H
U/S
Shell
C
O
R
E

D/S
Shell
Filter
Figure 4.8: A diaphragm earthfill dam with inclined core.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-8
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Advantages
1. Core can be constructed after completion of d/s portion of embankment. Especially
useful for short dry weather condition. Suitable to allow construction of core from fine
grained soils.
2. Foundation grouting can be continued while dam embankment is being placed (thus
smaller construction period).
3. Filter zones can be thin (smaller slanting width for same horizontal width) and are
easier to install.
Disadvantages
1. Location of core for deep foundation conditions cannot be determined in advance; thus
difficult to locate grout curtain.
2. Additional grouting, if required after dam completion, cannot be undertaken.
Location of Impervious Core/Diaphragm
The core is preferably located in the center of the dam embankment due to following
advantages.
1. The core is equally supported and is more stable during a sudden drawdown (if
constructed from earth).
2. Settlement of dam induces compressive stresses in the core, tending to make it more
compact.
3. There is less core volume.
4. Foundation grouting if required can be done post construction of the dam from the crest.
The choice of impermeable zone depends on stability of the core material. If it is strong to
resist cracking under load, a location near u/s is often the most economical. However, if core
material is weak, a central location is better.
[www.ferc/industries/hydropower/safety/eng-guide/chap4.pdf (embankment dam) and
/chap3.pdf (gravity dam)]
4.5 CONTROL OF SEEPAGE THROUGH EMBANKMENT
The seepage through the dam embankment is controlled by two steps: (1) minimize
the seepage rate and volumes and (2) streamline the any seepage to exit from the dam without
any damage to the embankment (safe seepage exit gradients).
1. Minimize the seepage: All the fill materials will allow some seepage through the
embankment. The impermeability of the core minimizes the seepage rate. Thus
permeability and the thickness of the core will ultimately set the seepage rate through the
embankment. Thus thick cores having minimum permeability materials will result in
smaller seepage rates.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-9
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

2. Contain and streamline the seepage: For a sustained high-level reservoir, the seepage
flow occurs through the dam section. The seepage emerges at the d/s face of homogeneous
and zoned dams. The seepage flow if unchecked can lead to severe piping, and sloughing
of the d/s slope and may ultimately lead to failure of the dam. Following arrangements are
used to contain and streamline the exit of seepage flow from the dam body.
4.5.1 Rockfill Toe and Toe Drain
The d/s toe of a homogeneous embankment is constituted of rockfill material with a
graded filter between the earthfill and rockfill pervious material. The seepage line will
converge towards the rockfill and is then exits safely across the d/s slope keeping the d/s
slope dry and safe. A graded filter is provided between the embankment fill material and the
rockfill toe to prevent migration of embankment materials into the rockfill toe. Frequently a
perforated toe drain of rockfill grade material (Fig. 4.5) is constructed near and below the
outer end of the toe to collect the seepage flow. A perforated pipe is embedded in a trench
filled with fine rock fill. The toe drain collects the seepage discharging from the embankment
and the foundation and lead it to an outfall into the river channel below.
Toe drains may be made of vitrified clay or concrete, perforated corrugated metal or
PVC pipe. Drains are placed in trenches below the ground surface to ensure effective
interception of seepage flow. Minimum depth below GS = 4 ft, maximum as required to
maintain uniform gradient. Bottom width of trench is 3-4 ft, pipe dia- 6 to 24 depending on
gradient, reach length, seepage rate. Drain pipe is surrounded by geotextile filter to prevent
clogging. Material surrounding drain must satisfy filter criteria. The fill materials in the
trench and surrounding the drain pipe include: Graded sand, Sand and gravel or selected fine
rock, and Graded gravel or crushed rock
4.5.2 Drainage Blanket
Blanket drains are provided under the base of embankment fill material and extend d/s
of impervious zone, impervious diaphragm or 1/4 to 1/3 base of the dam (Figs. 4.3 and 4.9).
The blanket drain will intercept the seepage line. Drainage blanket may contain one or more
layers of coarse filter grade materials of filter criteria to match with the materials on two sides
of the filter. The thickness of the blanket should be enough to carry the seepage flow to the
toe drain at the end of the blanket. The blanket drain may not provide full protection against
seepage over a stratification layer which moves horizontally over the layer and ultimately
reaches the downstream face.
Blanket drain: It may be a continuous layer along whole length of dam or may be intermittent
and connected with chimney drain. The length of the dram should reach to d/s edge of core or
u/s water depth for a uniform dam. In some cases it may extend under the core. Large length
of drain decreases the seepage flow path and increase seepage. The thickness varies 3 ft and
above. Material is of filter criteria. A toe drain or a drainage gallery is also provided at outer
end to collect the seepage.

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-10
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams









4.5.3 Chimney Drain
This is a vertical or inclined drain (made of graded filter) provided inside the dam
body (Figs 4.4, and 4.6 to 4.8). These are usually placed d/s of the impervious core and may
be vertical or inclined (30
o
120
o
The chimney drain can be equally useful for a homogeneous dam with a toe drain.
The dam fill placement and compaction in layers form a pseudo-layered condition where
seepage flow entering in one layer will continue in the same layer and will ultimately appear
on d/s slope facing leading to slope failure. The chimney drain will intercept the seepage
from these layers and lead safely to the toe drain (Fig. 4.4)
). The chimney drain may be composed of one or more
zones to match the gradation of the adjacent materials. The chimney drain intercepts the
seepage flow that crosses the core. It may be single graded or double graded depending upon
gradation of fill materials on the two sides of the chimney drain. Chimney drain is used in
conjunction with horizontal drainage blanket. Chimney drain is connected to blanket drain at
bottom or into a floor channel of drainage gallery.
4.6 FILTER CRITERIA
The filter material is placed in toe, blanket or chimney drains and its materials must
match with the gradation of the adjacent materials to ensure stability of the filter and adjacent
materials. The filter must have large flow capacity to transmit intercepted seepage flow out of
the dam body. Following criteria follows. D refers to the size of filter material (having larger
size) and d refers to the size of base (adjacent) materials having smaller size. (Sherard P-83,
USBR 2001, p-235).
Standard sieve set is used to determine the particle size gradation of fill and filter
materials. The sieve sizes are as under.
# mm # mm # mm # mm # mm
3 6.4 10 2.0 25 0.71 60 0.25 200 0.074
4 4.8 12 1.7 30 0.59 70 0.21 270 0.053
5 4.0 16 1.19 35 0.50 100 0.149 300 0.050
6 3.4 18 1.00 40 0.42 140 0.105 325 0.044
8 2.38 20 0.84 50 0.297 170 0.088 400 0.037
Dam foundation material
(fine to coarse grained)
EARTHFILL
Dam d/s slope
Fine graded filter
Coarse graded filter
Figure 4.9: D/s horizontal drainage blanket and toe drain.
Toe drain
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-11
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

The fill and filter material are characterized by Uniformity Coefficient C
U
= d
60
/d
10
and
Coefficient of Curvature as: C
C
= d
30
2
/[d
60
xd
10
] and Self-Filtering Critera C
SF
=
d
50
2
/[d
60
xd
10
1. D
]. The filter criteria is as under:
15
/d
15
2. D
= 5 to 40
15
/d
85
3. D
5 [This is to prevent migration of fines.]
85
4. Gradation curve of filter material be parallel to gradation curve of base material
(similar C
/drain opening 2 [for toe drain]
U
5. If base material contains gravel, then filter is designed on the basis of gradation curve
of the portion of the material finer than 1 sieve.
as for base material).
6. Filter should contain not more than 5% of fines passing # 200 sieves and the fines, if
any, should be cohesionless.
7. Self filtering is achieved if d
15 coarser
5 d
An alternate filter criteria for transition zone is described as under.
85 finer

* D
15
/d
15
* D
> 4-5 For sufficient permeability
15
/d
85
* D
< 4-5 To prevent migration of fines
50
/d
50
* D
< 25 To prevent migration of fines
60
/D
10
The filter may have one zone/layer or more than one zone between the adjacent fill
materials e.g. clay core and rockfill. Single or double filter layers between fine and course fill
are selected to ensure filter criteria on both sides of the filter layer. For single zone/layer filter
of Fig. 4.10(a) the filter F1 must comply both for the gradation of clay core on one side and
the gradation of rockfill on the other side. Considering the filter criteria between clay core
and filter F1 the D will refer to gradation of filter F1 and d will refer to gradation of clay
core. Considering the filter criteria between filter F1 and the rockfill the D will refer to
gradation of rockfill and d will refer to gradation of filter F1. For double zone/layer filters of
Fig. 4.10(b) the filter F2 abutting the coarser fill material (rockfill) will be coarse than filter
F1 abutting the finer fill material (clay core). The filter F1 must comply both for the
gradation of clay core on one side and the gradation of filter F2 on the other side. Similarly
the filter F2 must comply both for gradation of filter F1 on one side and the rockfill gradation
on the other side. In exceptional cases three layers/zones of filter may become necessary to
fully meet the filter criterion between fine and coarse fill materials.
< 20 For well graded filter to prevent segregation of filter
Dimensions of Filter Layer
Filter zone width and thickness is selected from point of view of its carrying capacity after
few years (when some settlement, particle rearrangement had occurred and some fines may
have settled) and its constructability.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-12
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Minimum thickness is one which can be constructed without danger of gaps or
areas of segregated materials.
Horizontal filter layers can be thin, as 6 for sand and 12 for gravel but thicker
layers are preferred.
Chimney drains or transition zones min horizontal width of the filter zone should
be 8-10 ft, 10-12 ft preferable to enable placement, handling and some
compaction.
For cost reasons or limited filter materials, 3-5 ft wide zones may be used, but
require more supervision and hand labor for good construction.










Example (USBR 2000, p-236)
Given: d
15
= 0.006 mm, d
85
D
= 0.10 mm, pipe openings = inches.
15
D
lower = 5 * 0.006 = 0.03 mm (1) [criteria 1]
15
D
upper = 40 * 0.006 = 0.24 mm (2) [criteria 1]
15
From eq 2 and 3 select smaller size, D
5 * 0.10 = 0.50 mm (3) [criteria 2]
15
upper = 0.24 mm; Average D
15
Draw filter gradation line parallel to base material gradation curve and read D
= 0.14 mm.
85
D
= 2.4 mm.
(4)
85
As D
2 * 0.5 1 (5) [criteria 3]
85
from eq (4) is smaller than from eq (5), thus a single filter layer will not work. Adopt
above criteria for 1
st
layer F1 [D
15
= 0.14 mm, D
85
= 2.4 mm] and Work for 2
nd
D
layer F2.
15
D
lower = 5 * 0.14 = 0.70 mm (6) [criteria 1]
15
upper = 40 * 0.14 = 5.6 mm (7) [criteria 1]
Clay core
Earthfill
F
i
l
t
e
r

F
1

F
i
l
t
e
r

F
2

Figure 4.10.1 Single or double zone/layer filter between clay core and gravel / coarse fill.
Clay core
Earthfill
F
i
l
t
e
r

F
1

(a) single filter zone
(b) double filter zones
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-13
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

D
15
5 * 0.24 = 12 mm (8) [criteria 2]

Figure 4.10.2: Mangla dam raising project showing core, and u/s and d/s double filter layers.

Core F1
F2 F1
F2
U/s fill
D/s fill
F1 F2
CORE
D/s fill
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-14
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Figure 4.10.3: Mangla dam raising project showing core, and double filter layers.

Constriction of chimney filter, Mangla dam raising project.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-15
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


From eq 7 and 8 select smaller size, D
15
upper = 5.6 mm; Average D
15
Draw filter gradation line parallel to base material gradation curve and read D
= 4.0 mm.
85
D
= 50 mm. (9)
85
Select D
2 * 0.5 1 (10) [criteria 3]
85
from eq 9 and 10 as 50 mm. Then F2 = [D
15
= 4.0 mm, D
85
Dimensions and Permeability of Toe/Blanket/Chimney Drains
= 50 mm.
The dimension and permeability of the drain must be adequate to carry away the
anticipated flow with an ample margin of safety for unexpected leaks. For a relatively
impermeable foundation, then the expected leakage would be low.
A drain should be constructed of material with a coefficient of permeability of at least
10 to 100 times greater than the average embankment material.
Drain material is usually a processed material. Pit run borrow is usually too dirty (i.e.
have large fines). Drain materials must have following grading.
Particle size % passing by weight
1 90 100
45 75
# 4 (4.8 mm) 30 - 45
# 50 (0.297 mm) 4 - 10
# 100 (0.149 mm) 1 - 3
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-16
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

# 200 (0.074 mm) 0 - 2
Gradation should be such that it will prevent particles of soil from the adjacent location from
entering the filter and clogging it.
4.7 FOUNDATION DESIGN
Foundation includes both valley floor and the abutments. Foundation must ensure
following design requirements
1. It provides support for the embankment under all conditions of saturation and
loading.
2. It provides sufficient resistance to seepage to prevent excessive loss of water.
Foundation is not actually designed but treatments are provided in design to ensure
that all essential requirements are met.
No two foundations exactly alike, each presents its own separate and distinct
problems. Foundation improvements be adopted to local conditions.
40% dam failures attributed to failure of the foundation.
Judgment on the basis of foundation exploration and past experiences.
Foundation may be of rock, coarse grained material (sand, gravel), or fine grained
material (silt and clay)
Infinite variations in the combinations (materials), structural arrangements and
physical characteristics of the constituent materials.
Roughly stratified.
For hard foundation minimum treatment include stripping of foundation area to
remove sand, topsoil, and other unsuitable materials.
A key trench is provided to improve bonding of impervious zone of embankment to
the foundation.
4.8 ROCK FOUNDATIONS
Most rock foundations have adequate physical strength. However weathering near the
surface make is weaker and prone to excessive seepage flows. Some treatments may be done
to improve strength and/or to reduce seepage potential. The treatments includes: (see detail in
chapter 3 on Geology): 1. Stripping, 2. Strengthening of weak zones, 3. Grouting to make it
water tight. Rock foundations are very well suited for earthfill and rockfill dams.
4.9 SAND GRAVEL FOUNDATIONS
4.9.1 Characteristics
Gravel/sand foundation has enough bearing/shear strength the support small to
medium earthfill and rockfill dams.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-17
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

However these foundations are very conducive to seepage and need suitable
treatment for seepage and uplift pressure control.
These materials usually are laid over impervious geological foundation at some
depth below the surface.
Usually stratified heterogeneous mixture
Excessive under seepage could lead to: Large seepage uplift pressures and Dam
failure due to piping (if fine sand is present in large quantities).
Clean sand (fine and uniform) of low density is inherently unstable due to its loose
structure and is liable to collapse under dynamic load as for earthquake.
Vibrations/shock as for an earthquake tremor causes re-adjustment of grains into a
dense structure. Pore water pressure increases suddenly (due to slow drainage) and
foundation behaves as liquid and results in sudden liquification.
Cohesionless sands of low relative density (< 50%) are suspect to failure.
4.9.2 Treatment of Foundation
The foundation is treated to minimize the seepage through the foundation and reduce
uplift pressures for d/s part. Various foundation treatments include positive cut-off, partial
cutoff, sheet pile, cement bound curtain, concrete wall, slurry trench, grouting, etc. These are
described below.










4.9.2.1 Positive Cut-off Trenches:
Rolled earth/clay is filled and compacted in a trench excavated to the impermeable
barrier / underlying hard bed rock (Fig. 4.11a). The compacted clay forms an impermeable
barrier to the seepage flow. The cutoff depth varies as 50 to 150 ft with 1:1 or flatter side
slopes. It is located in continuation of the embankment core u/s from centerline of dam crest,
but not beyond where cover of core becomes small. It is made of usually same material as is
H
U/S
Shell
CORE
D/S
Shell
Figure 4.11a: A positive cutoff for earthfill dam.
Gravel sand foundation
Bed rock
Overburden
River
bottom
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-18
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

suitable for dam core. Wider trench base is adopted for dams with large depth. For deeper
trench smaller base may be used as seepage force at foundation contact decrease with
increase in depth. Grouting of upper part of weathered/fractured bed rock, if required.
Generally top width as w = h d. A minimum bottom width 20 ft to allow operating
machinery. Trench below water table will require dewatering.
4.9.9.2 Partial Cutoff
The cutoff penetrates only partially into the foundation (Fig. 4.11b).
Suitable if a low K layer of considerable thickness found above the bed rock. This
layer must be aerially extensive. Thus seepage from upper more pervious layer is
intercepted.
Partial barrier be at least 95% deep to have any appreciable reduction in seepage.
Partial seepage barrier may be effective at sites where average permeability of
foundation decreases with depth.
For deep foundations the upper part is sealed off against seepage by providing a
partial cutoff and lower part may be sealed by providing sheet piling or grouting
etc below and in continuation of the partial cutoff.
In all cases a minimum partial cutoff of 6-10 ft should be provided. This trench
also provided better understanding of the subsoil conditions.











4.9.2.3 Sheet Piling Cutoff
Steel sheet pile may be driven into soft alluvium.
Depth to bed rock.
Used in combination with partial cutoff to seal lower horizons.
H
U/S
Shell
CORE
D/S
Shell
Figure 4.11b: A partial cutoff for earthfill dam.
Deep gravel sand foundation
Bed rock
Sheet piling or grouting etc
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-19
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Not suitable for cobbles/boulders as these formations cause misalignment/ open
joints, interlock liable to tear-off, pile wander off, pile twisting making an
ineffective barrier.
Twin steel sections may be used with interior filled with cement grout.
Not completely water tight
80-90% effective if good work
Poor workmanship, efficiency less than 50%.
Seepage resistance offered by sheet pile equals 30-40 ft length of soil; field tests
show resistance equivalent of 400-2000 ft. The effectiveness increase with time
due to filling of gap by sediments, encrustation etc.

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-20
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.12a: Sheet pile installation at Taunsa Barrage. (L) Secondary weir, (R) Old pile
exposed. Note the pile section and the interlocking between the pile sheets.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-21
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.12b: Taunsa Barrage: Sheet pile interlocking and embedding in concrete.

Figure 4.12c: Taunsa Barrage: Sheet pile installation by vibroinstaller.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-22
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.12d: Taunsa Barrage: Sheet pile installation by vibroinstaller.

Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-23
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.12e: Taunsa Barrage second weir: U/s, mid and d/s sheet pile rows.

4.9.2.4 Cement Bound Curtain Cutoff
In places piles are cast by mixing cement with foundation material (Fig. 4.13).
Curtin constructed by successive overlapping individual piles.
Each pile consist of column of sand intimately mixed with mortar to form a pile
like structure
Hole drilled, Mortar injected through hollow rotating pipe with mixer head at
bottom.
May be reinforced.





U/s Mid
D/s
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-24
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams












4.9.2.5 Concrete Wall
RCC wall build down to
the bed rock provide
positive cutoff.
Wall width 5 ft or more
Dewatering and shoring
bracing/sheeting required.
High in cost and
challenging in construction
RCC or PCC
Depths 150-200 ft in past
4.9.2.6 Slurry Trench
Trench excavated by drag
lines 5 wide or less.
Depth to impervious layer
rock surface.
Excavated material stock
piled in windrows.
Trench filled with
bentonite mud slurry
(slurry density > water
density) which prevent
Plan
Section
Figure 4.13 Cement bound curtain cutoff.
River level
Bed rock level
Pictorial
Figure 4.14 Sequential operations in the
construction of a slurry trench. (Source
USBR 2001, p-228).
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-25
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

walls from caving in. Slurry weighs more than water.
Mud slurry level above water table to keep trench sides stabilized.
Trench bottom cleared with clamshell bucket and air lift pumps
Bentonite coated excavated slurry material are further blended with 15-20% of
natural silt.
Mixture dumped on one end of trench, displacing the slurry until backfilling
complete.
Completed slurry trench in a very soft condition for many months after
construction, with consistency like a stiff butter.
Need more care if cobbles, boulders, large blocks in deeper locations.
The upper weathered/fractured part of the bed rock grouted after completion of the
slurry trench.
4.9.2.7 Grouting Alluvial Deposits
Cement grouts not injected uniformly in alluvial deposits except for coarse
material
Chemical grout can be injected in sand, but expensive
Primary difficulty of keeping hole open with casing, impossibility of using
packers, and lack of technique ensuring uniform penetration of grout
Special techniques developed for grouting in alluvium as packers can not be used
along with casing.
Coarse materials grouted successfully
Usually several rows of grout holes to increase effectiveness.
Outer rows grouted with cement and cement-clay grouts, inner rows with
chemical grout.
Results of grouting difficult to evaluate.
4.9.2.8 Horizontal U/s Impervious Blanket [Sherard p-312, Fig 6.3.2]
If construction of complete seepage barrier for a dam on pervious foundation is not
practicable, then under seepage may be reduced by increasing the width of the base of
impervious section by a horizontal impervious blanket, which is connected to the dam core.
The seepage is reduced due to lengthening of seepage path. This also reduces the d/s pore
water pressure and thus increase stability. The u/s impervious blanket is constructed of
impervious material extending u/s of the dam face toe/ heel and connected with impervious
core of the dam embankment (Fig. 4.15).
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-26
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

These may be used in conjunction with partial cutoff located at u/s end or any
other location (e.g. Tarbela, Khanpur dam).
Blanket is generally used for a stream channel or valley floor of sand and gravel.
This may also be required for portions of abutments to reduce seepage through the
abutments.
Blanket starts from core of the dam and extends about 400-500 m, upstream.
Blanket thickness 10% of dam height (minimum 10 feet) at dam face to minimum
3 ft at outer end.
Blanket protected from erosion by 2-3 ft thick riprap over gravel bedding.
Areas with natural clay blanket if any are cleared of trees/vegetation, defective
places repaired, and entire surface rolled to seal root holes.
No stripping of area us/ of dam to obtain fine construction material for dam
construction (particularly if no +ve cutoff).
Length of blanket governed by desired reduction in seepage flow.
Blanket may not eliminate piping in naturally stratified soils as high pressures
may exist in one or more strata at d/s toe of the dam.
Tarbella dam has 5700 ft long u/s impervious blanket. Its thickness varies from 42
ft at dam u/s toe to 10 ft at the outer end.










Figure 4.15a: U/s horizontal impermeable barrier.
U/s impermeable
barrier / blanket
Protective gravel/
riprap layer
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-27
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Figure 4.15b: Mangla dam raising: u/s impervious blanket with top gravel layer for
protection in area of Sukhian dike.

Figure 4.15c: Mangla dam raising: Compaction of impervious blanket by sheep foot rollers
at optimum moisture content.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-28
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

4.9.2.9 Horizontal d/s impervious blanket
Likewise u/s blanket, impermeable horizontal blanket may also be provided at d/s of
dam to lengthen seepage path and reduce seepage (Fig. 4.16). However due to its position at
d/s of dam it is subjected to excessive uplift pressures. Thus the d/s blanket must be designed
to resist uplift pressure. This is done by providing berm of random fill material to add weight
over the impermeable layer. The d/s drainage blanket may be provided above the
impermeable blanket. D/s impervious blanket is not very often used.





4.9.3 Seepage through Foundation
4.9.3.1 Seepage rate
Under seepage through the foundation is determined by Darcys law
Q = K I A I = h/L
I = Average hydraulic gradient over the flow length.
L = length of seepage path = base of impervious bottom or core
h = head difference between reservoir water level and the d/s drain water level.
A = 1 x depth of foundation
K = average permeability for all layers (horizontal K)








The Darcy formula is quite valid when depth of the foundation (d) is small in
comparison to the flow length L. For other conditions a flow net should be drawn to
Random fill to counteract
uplift pressure. Height=H/2
D/s impermeable blanket
Figure 4.16 D/s impervious blanket.
Figure 4.17 Seepage force components. [USBR p-221]
L
d
Seepage exit
area ~ 2-3 d
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-29
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

determine the seepage flow rate. The seepage flow emerges d/s of the dam over a length 2-3 d
depending on the permeability and stratification/ layering of the foundation.
4.9.3.2 Seepage Forces and Piping
The flow of water through pervious foundation produces seepage force due to
friction of percolating water with the walls of the pores.
Seepage force proportional to flow velocity.
Small downward force at entry over large u/s area. This increases submerged
weight of soil.
Under the dam flow velocity increases due to reduced flow area.
At d/s toe of dam, the seepage force is upward reducing effective weight of the
soil.
If upward force exceeds soil weight, the soil would be floated out (boils
formation).
The particle erosion progress backward along the flow line until a continuous pipe
like opening is formed (usually irregular and tortuous) to reservoir.
Piping allows rapid escape of water.
It can lead to dam failure due to foundation heaving.
Excessive seepage results in blow out / heave at d/s of dam.
Piping failure also called as failure by heave or internal/subsurface erosion.
Magnitude and distribution of seepage forces by flow net analysis (this requires
considerable experience to draw flow net).
Grain size and gradation of the foundation materials has an important bearing on
the piping failure.
Piping failure takes places after the dam has been in service for some time.
Piping takes places along minor geological weaknesses.
Piping can be completely and reliably prevented by controlling the under seepage
such as (Sherard P-313):
i. Exist velocities are not high.
ii. Water discharges through adequate thickness of progressively coarser soils
which meets gradation requirements of filter.
Line of creep- shortest path that a particle of water has to travel in seepage under
the dam.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-30
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

Creep ratio i.e. the ratio of length of creep to the pressure head loss (CR = L/h),
this is inverse of the average hydraulic gradient.
Weighted creep ratio is for length of line of creep computed as sum of the vertical
components of the shortest seepage path plus one-third of the length of the
horizontal seepage path. This is used for stratified soils.
Criterion for piping potential on the basis of weighted creep ratio as function of
foundation soil type.
Creep ratio. Minimum 3 for gravel/boulder foundation
Minimum 8 for very fine sands
This is to be used as guide to judgment but not as a design criteria.
Valid if no graded filter provided at d/s of dam (graded filter reduces flow length).
The best plan is to provide drainage blanket of graded filter under d/s section of
the dam.
Pressure relief wells placed near d/s toe of dam shall be useful to intercept the
seepage and this reduces uplift pressures.
4.9.3.3 Pressure Relief Wells
Relief wells are to ease out and reduce pressure of the seeping water under the
foundation of an earth dam.
These has disadvantages as:
a. These decrease the length of average seepage path and cause to increase the
quantity of under seepage.
b. These require frequent inspection and maintenance, replacement.
c. The pressure head is lowered to a value nearly equal to the elevation of top (or
discharge level) of the well.
d. Well may discharge into a delivery pipe, a drainage ditch and water is carried
back to river section.
e. Wells to be closely spaced (10 to 25 ft) to minimize pressure build up in
between. Spacing based on judgment.
f. Additional wells be installed in between or in d/s row subsequently, if needed.
g. Wells penetrate more than 50% depth of foundation.
h. Screen is placed in center of hole and outer annular spaced filled with suitable
gravel pack as per filter criteria. Usually a single pack is used and screen
opening is designed to match the selected filter material.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-31
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

i. Wells are developed to improve efficiency.
j. Pressure relief wells are very helpful to relieve seepage pressure when lower
pervious foundation material is overlain by otherwise natural impervious
stratum (no danger of piping, blow out).
k. Depth of wells equal to height of dam (or depth of bed rock) are most
satisfactory.
l. Pressure relief wells lower uplift pressure but enhance seepage flow rate.




















4.9.3.4 Deep toe drain
A toe drain is often provided to collect seepage flow occurring through the drainage
blanket. This is generally a shallow ditch filled with gravel/sand material. The toe drain also
intercepts the seepage flow through the dam foundation. Providing a deeper toe drain can
considerably enhance the interception of foundation seepage. A graded filter zone is provided
Bed rock
Drainage ditch
Pressure relief well
Seepage flow
Figure 4.17 Pressure relief well.
Well details
Well head details
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-32
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

between the foundation and toe drain fill to stop migration of fines from the foundation. The
deep toe drain does not significantly alter the seepage path length and thus seepage rate is not
very much affected.

Sand boiling
http://research.eerc.berkeley.edu/projects/GEER/GEER_Post%20EQ%20Reports/Peru_2007/
Liquefaction.htm#Jahuay%20Reference



Figure 3.4 A large sand boil feature at the southern end of the 400 m long slope failure with
shrinkage cracks in the perimeter ejecta material (08/21/07 5:25PM, S13.3950
W76.1979).
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-33
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


http://research.eerc.berkeley.edu/projects/GEER/GEER_Post%20EQ%20Reports/Peru_2007/
DSC05084.JPG
Figure 3.9 A large sand boil at the base of the Pan American highway
embankment failure. Note the three concrete box culverts running through the
embankment that were sheared during the failure (see Figure 3.8). Also notice the
shrinkage cracks in the perimeter ejecta material (08/24/07 2:47PM, S13.41307
W76.18960).

Grain Size Distribution Curves for Two Sand Boils near the Jahuay Slope
Failure
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-34
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams



Sand Boil Specimen USCS
%
Fines LL PL PI
Jahuay Boil (LMS-540) SC 43 25 17 8
Pan Am Boil (LMS-504) SP 2.9 NP NP NP


A picture of the sand boil labeled as ?Jahuay Boil? in the grain size distribution
plot and table above is shown in Figure 3.4. A picture of the sand boil labeled
as ?Pan Am Boil? is shown to the left Both sand boils were found near the
Jahuay Slope Failure (Section 3.2)



Sand boil (source Kaplan, 2004)
Injection & grouting
Dynamic compaction
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-35
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Piping failure. [Indiana DoNR 2007]
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-36
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams

ASWCC 2002




Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-37
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams





Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-38
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Seepage area on downstream
embankment behind tree
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-39
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


Seepage at toe of dam

a. Water flows through dam as a result of piping.
Tariq 2008 DAM AND RESERVOIR ENGINEERING 4-40
Ch 4: Earthfill and Rockfill Embankment Dams


b. Note the eddy or whirlpool in the
reservoir, indicating removal
of water by piping


4.9.4 Sand Gravel Foundation Design
The design criteria require control of seepage flow through the foundation and
abutments (no internal erosion, no sloughing in area where seepage emerges). The pervious
foundation may be either exposed or covered at the surface. The pervious foundation may be
homogeneous or stratified. Stratification influence foundation treatment method.
4.9.4.1 Case I: Exposed Foundation
The sand gravel foundation is open at the surface. The foundation may be shallow,
medium or deep.
A: Shallow Foundation