Piping Potential of Weak Zones Under Concrete Dams

by Gregg A. Scott, (A.M.ASCE), Geotechnical Engr.; U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, Denver, Colo.,

Serial Information: Journal of the Geotechnical Engineering Division, 1982, Vol. 108, Issue 3, Pg. 488-493

Document Type: Journal Paper


A method is presented for evaluating the piping potential of shear zones crossing the foundation of a concrete dam from upstream to downstream. The steps described for this method involves determination of the exit gradient for the zone in question, determination of the exit gradient for the zone under reservoir conditions, and comparison of the exit gradient under reservoir conditions to the critical exit gradient for determining required foundation treatment.

Subject Headings: Concrete dams | Piping erosion | Dam foundations | Rivers and streams | Reservoirs | Comparative studies

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