Development of an applied element based tool for prediction of collapse behavior of concrete dam monoliths

Thesis Type: Postgraduate

Institution Of The Thesis: Middle East Technical University, Turkey

Approval Date: 2020

Student: Hamidullah Hassan Zada

Supervisor: YALIN ARICI


In this study, conducted with the support of TUBITAK under the grant 116M524, a software framework with a web-based graphical user interface is developed for the investigation of the seismic behavior of concrete gravity dams. Using a modified discrete element technique, one of the primary goals of the developed tool is to simulate extensive cracking on concrete dam monoliths followed by sliding, rocking and loss of stability. The graphical user interface for using this engine is prepared in HTML, JavaScript and CSS languages. The structure and content of the GUI are controlled with HTML, whereas the style and formatting are conducted in CSS. Interaction within the GUI is handled through the JavaScript language. The GUI is set up to provide a simple, stable, and easy interaction with the numerical problem at hand. The meshing for the solid elements and reservoir elements are handled within the software using ray-tracing algorithms among other tools for controlling the geometry of the discretized numerical system. The work is organized as follows: The structure of the code is presented first, with the explanation of options provided in the GUI as well as the modeling technique. Examples of the use of GUI for the modeling of complicated dam geometry and reservoir systems are shown next. The algoritms used for simulation of large displacement problems of elastic bodies are shown and the methodology for modeling of contact between objects is presented. Finally, the capability of the solution of very large displacement problems is demonstrated using three benchmark problems, free fall/bouncing, rocking and overturning response of a square block. In summary, this study presents the details of the GUI implementation as well as the demonstration of the capability of the simulation of large displacement problems with the developed tools.