Design and Performance of Earth Spillways

by David C. Ralston, SCS, United States,
John A. Brevard, SCS, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Hydraulic Engineering


The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Soil Conservation Service has designed and administered construction of a large number of dams utilizing grassed earth-lined auxiliary spillways as a part of the spillway system. This type of spillway has been used for a significant number of dams in the last thirty years. The spillway design criteria is presented, along with the principles upon which it is based, and a summary of the performance experience of these spillways.

Subject Headings: Hydraulic design | Spillways | Soil structures | Agriculture | Infrastructure construction | Earthfill dams | Drop structures | Construction management

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