Breach Progression Observation in Rockfill Dam Models Using Photogrammetry
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionRemote Sensing. 2023, 15 (6), 1715-?. https://doi.org/10.3390/rs15061715
Dam failures are examples of man-made disasters that have stimulated investigation into the processes related to the failure of different dam types. Embankment dam breaching during an overtopping event is one of the major modes of failure for this dam type, comprising both earthfill and rockfill dams. This paper presents the results of a series of laboratory tests on breach initiation and progression in rockfill dams. Especially eight breaching tests of 1 m-high 1:10 scale embankment dams constructed of scaled well-graded rockfill were conducted. Tests were performed with and without an impervious core and under different inflow discharges. Controlling instrumentation includes up to nine video cameras used for image analysis and photogrammetry. A previously little-used technique of dynamic 3D photogrammetry has been applied to prepare 3D models every 5 s throughout the breaching process, allowing us to track in detail breach development. These dynamic 3D models along with pressure sensor data, flow data, and side-view video are used to provide data on erosion rates throughout the breaching process. One important purpose of this research is to test methods of observing a rapidly changing morphology such as an embankment dam breach that can easily be scaled up to large-scale and prototype-scale tests. The resulting data sets are further intended for the verification of existing empirical and numerical models for slope stability and breach development as well as the development of new models.