Watertightness and Seepage Control in Roller Compacted Concrete Dams

by Ernest K. Schrader, (M.ASCE), ASCE, New York, NY, USA,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Roller Compacted Concrete


An unjointed mass of roller compacted concrete (RCC) can easily be proportioned and compacted so that it is essentially impermeable and 'watertight. ' Permeability tests of various field-placed RCC mixes verify this. Unfortunately, RCC is placed in layers, and seepage along the interface of each layer usually results. This potential seepage must be considered during design and be controlled by some method appropriate for structural stability, aesthetics, water loss concerns, and durability requirements. A variety of approaches can be taken toward dealing with this seepage. The most basic concept is to simply overbuild the dam so that it is stable under 100% uplift conditions. Another approach is to use a special bedding mix or joint preparation procedure between the layers.

Subject Headings: Concrete dams | Roller-compacted concrete | Permeability (material) | Verification | Hydraulic design | Structural stability | Aesthetics | Infrastructure construction

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