WIT Press

Computational Identification Of Real Displacements Of An Arch Dam Using Nonlinear Material With Geochemical Damping


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S. Hernández & L. A. Romera


The Belesar dam is an impressive arch dam existing in Spain which has experienced an unusual displacements field due to geochemical reactions between alkaline components of the cement and concrete aggregates. A preliminary study was carried out over past decade intended to computationally model dam structural behaviour. Recently, a new study containing improvements with regards to the previous one has been completed. The research worked out defines a sophisticated constitutive law for the concrete including orthotropic geochemical damping. The numerical results show a good adequacy with respect to the measured displacements of the dam. 1 Introduction The Belesar Dam is an arch dam located in North West Spain. It has a height of 130 m and its maximum length at the top is about 275 m. The dam has been monitored since construction works finished in 1963. The structure behaved as predicted at the beginning of the service life but soon afterwards the dam showed unexpected upstream displacements. This structural response was a consequence of an expansive process in the dam concrete due to chemical interaction between alkaline components of the cement and concrete aggregates. According to data from the monitoring system of the dam this phenomenon was first located in the left side of the dam, and has spread out to most of the dam mass since 1979.