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Site Selection for

Dams and Reservoirs

Dr. P. Sarathbabu

ANU
Dam
• Barrier that stores water at two levels.
• The primary purpose of dam is to store
water whenever available in plenty for
use during scarcity.
• Built across rivers
• Excess water is released to river and
useful water is transferred thro canals
Dams are constructed for water storage for
community and industrial use, irrigation, flood
control, hydro electric power, river canalization.

Dams depends on environmental conditions


particularly the geology of the site.

Safety is the first consideration and than cost as that


the failure of a dam results in sevior loss of life and
property.
Components of Dam
• Body of Dam
• Foundation
• Top road
• Gates and lifting devices
• Spill way or Sluice
• Canal
• Reservoir
• Main river course
• Stilling Basin
• Drainage gallery
Components & Forces in Dams

Upstream Gate
Down Stream

Spill Way

Reservoir Drainage Gallery


Dam Body
Water

Sluice gate
Stilling Basin

Foundation Foundation Soil


Reservoir
Water

Upstream

Down Stream
Plan of Dam
Upstream

Abutment Downstream

Left Bank Canal

Main River Course


Reservoir

Right bank Canal


Abutment
Reservoir
Water
Preliminary Investigations for Dam site

This investigations are made to ascertain its


important merits or demerits. This kind of
investigation is necessary, so that detailed
investigations which are much more expensive,
extensive and laborious should be made only if the
site is approved. The important information
collected at this stage is as follows.

1. Lithology
2. Structure
3. Physiography (Topography)
4. Ground Water Conditions
Site selection criteria for the dams and reservoirs

Basing on the analysis of dam problems, failures and hazards


it may be concluded that the dam sites to satisfy the following
requirements.
1. The rock should be sound and resistant to the expected
static and dynamic forces including earthquakes.

2. The valley slope should be stable when the reservoir is


full. This requirement also applies to the rock
abutments.

3. The foundation of the dam should be safe from sliding,


especially in the case of gravity dam.

4. The rock used for the foundation should be of one


geologic classification to avoid variations in the values
of modulus of elasticity.
5. The foundation and the reservoir wall should be water
tight.

6. The rock at the site should be resistant to solution,


erosion, decomposition and other detriment effects of
wetting and drying freezing and thawing.

7. The reservoir drainage area including rocks and


overburden should be resistant to erosion and therefore
not likely to contribute such heavy silt loads to the
reservoir.

8. The geology and topographic conditions should permit


favourably for the location of spillways and diversion
tunnel, power house and outlet conduits.

9. The location of construction materials particularly


concrete aggregate should be with in an economically
justified distances.
FUNCTIONS OF DAMS
Function Example

Hydroelectric power is a major source of electricity in the world. many


countries have rivers with adequate water flow, that can be dammed for power
Power
generation purposes. For eg, the Itaipu on the Paraná River in South America
generation
generates 14 GW and supplied 93% of the energy consumed by Paraguay and
20% of that consumed by Brazil as of 2005.

Dams are often used to control and stabilize water flow, for agricultural
Stabilize water purposes and irrigation. They can help to stabilize or restore the water levels
flow / irrigation of inland lakes and seas. They store water for drinking and other direct human
needs,

Flood prevention Dams are created for flood control.

Dams (often called dykes or levees) are used to prevent ingress of water to an
Land
area that would otherwise be submerged, allowing its reclamation for human
reclamation
use.

Water diversion Dams are used for the purpose of diversion.


CLASSIFICATION (TYPES) OF DAMS
BASED ON PURPOSE

• 1. STORAGE DAM OR IMPOUNDING DAM


• 2. DETENTION DAM
• 3. DIVERSION DAM
• 4. COFFER DAM
• 5. DEBRIS DAM
• 1. STORAGE DAM OR IMPOUNDING DAM

• It is constructed to create a reservoir to store


water during periods when there is huge flow
in the river (in excess of demand) for
utilisation later during periods of low flow
(demand exceeds flow in the river).

• Water stored in the reservoir is used for


irrigation, power generation, water supply
etc. By suitable operation, it can also serve
as a detention dam.
• 2. DETENTION DAM

• It is primarily constructed to temporarily


detain all or part of the flood water in a river
and to gradually release the stored water
later at controlled rates so that the entire
region on the downstream side of the dam is
protected from possible damage due to
floods.
• It may also be used as a storage dam.
• 3. DIVERSION DAM

• It is constructed to divert part of or all


the water from a river into a conduit or
a channel.

• For diverting water from a river into an


irrigation canal, mostly a diversion weir
is constructed across the river.
• 4. COFFER DAM

• It is a temporary dam constructed to


exclude water from a specific area. It is
constructed on the u/s side of the site
where a dam is to be constructed so
that the site is dry.
• In this case, it behaves like a diversion
dam.
• 5. DEBRIS DAM

• It is constructed to catch and retain debris flowing in a


river
BASED ON HYDRAULIC DESIGN

• 1. OVERFLOW DAM OR OVERFALL DAM

• 2. NON-OVERFLOW DAM
1. OVERFLOW DAM OR OVERFALL DAM

• It is constructed with a crest to permit overflow


of surplus water that cannot be retained in the
reservoir.

• Generally dams are not designed as overflow


dams for its entire length.

• Diversion weirs of small height may be


designed to permit overflow over its entire
length.
• 2. NON-OVERFLOW DAM
• It is constructed such that water is not
allowed to overflow over its crest.

• In most cases, dams are so designed that part


of its length is designed as an overflow dam
(this part is called the spillway) while the rest
of its length is designed as a non-overflow
dam.

• In some cases, these two sections are not


combined.
BASED ON MATERIAL OF
CONSTRUCTION
• 1. RIGID DAM
• 2. NON-RIGID DAM (EMBANKMENT DAMS)

• 1. RIGID DAM

• It is constructed with rigid material such as stone,


masonry, concrete, steel, or timber.

• Steel dams (steel plates supported on inclined


struts) and timber dams (wooden planks supported
on a wooden framework) are constructed only for
small heights (rarely).
• 2. NON-RIGID DAM (EMBANKMENT DAMS)

• It is constructed with non-rigid material such as earth,


tailings, rockfill etc.

• Earthen dam – gravel, sand, silt, clay etc

• Tailings dam – waste or refuse obtained from mines

• Rockfill dam – rock material supporting a water tight


material on the u/s face

• Rockfill composite dam – Rockfill on the d/s side and


earth fill on the u/s side
• Earthen dams are provided with a stone
masonry or concrete overflow (spillway)
section. Such dams are called composite
dams.

• In some cases, part of the length of the dam


is constructed as earth dam and the rest
(excluding the spillway) as a masonry dam.
Such dams are called masonry cum earthen
dams.
BASED ON STRUCTURAL BEHAVIOUR

• GRAVITY DAM
• ARCH DAM
• BUTTRESS DAM
• EMBANKMENT DAM
• GRAVITY DAM
• It is a masonry or concrete dam which
resists the forces acting on it by its
own weight. Its c/s is approximately
triangular in shape.

• Straight gravity dam – A gravity dam


that is straight in plan.

• Curved gravity plan – A gravity dam


that is curved in plan.
• Curved gravity dam (Arch gravity dam) –
It resists the forces acting on it by
combined gravity action (its own weight)
and arch action.
• Solid gravity dam – Its body consists of a
solid mass of masonry or concrete
• Hollow gravity dam – It has hollow
spaces within its body.
• Most gravity dams are straight solid
gravity dams.
Concrete Gravity Dams

• Weight holds dam in place


• Lots of concrete (expensive)

These dams are heavy and massive
wall-like structures of concrete in
which the whole weight acts vertically
downwards
• As the entire load is transmitted on the small
area of foundation, such dams are constructed
where rocks are competent and stable.

• Bhakra Dam is the highest Concrete Gravity dam in Asia


and the second highest in the world.

• Bhakra Dam is across river Sutlej in Himachal Pradesh


• The construction of this project was started in the year
1948 and was completed in 1963 .

• It is 740 ft. high above the deepest foundation as straight


concrete dam being more than three times the height of
Qutab Minar.
• Length at top 518.16m (1700 feet); width at
base 190.5m (625 feet), and at the top is
9.14m (30 feet)

• Bhakra Dam is the highest Concrete Gravity


dam in Asia and Second Highest in the world.
• 2. ARCH DAM
• It is a curved masonry or concrete dam, convex
upstream, which resists the forces acting on it by
arch action.

• The only arch dam in India – Idukki dam (double


curvature in plan) – concrete arch dam

• Arch Dams
• Arch shape gives strength
• Less material (cheaper)
• Narrow sites
• Need strong abutments
• These type of dams are concrete or masonry
dams which are curved or convex upstream in
plan

• This shape helps to transmit the major part of


the water load to the abutments

• Arch dams are built across narrow, deep river


gorges, but now in recent years they have
been considered even for little wider valleys.
• 3. BUTTRESS DAM
• It consists of water retaining sloping membrane or deck
on the u/s which is supported by a series of buttresses.
These buttresses are in the form of equally spaced
triangular masonry or reinforced concrete walls or
counterforts.

• The sloping membrane is usually a reinforced concrete


slab. In some cases, the u/s slab is replaced by multiple
arches supported on buttresses (multiple arch buttress
dam) or by flaring the u/s edge of the buttresses to span
the distance between the buttresses (bulkhead buttress
dam or massive head buttress dam). In general, the
structural behaviour of a buttress dam is similar to that
of a gravity dam.
• Buttress Dam – Is a gravity dam
reinforced by structural supports

• Buttress – a support that transmits a


force from a roof or wall to another
supporting structure

• This type of structure can be


considered even if the foundation
rocks are little weaker.
• Buttress Dams
• Face is held up by a series of supports
• Flat or curved face
• . EMBANKMENT DAM

• It is a non-rigid dam which resists the forces acting


on it by its shear strength and to some extent also
by its own weight (gravity).

• Its structural behaviour is in many ways different


from that of a gravity dam.

• Earth or rock
• Weight resists flow of water
• Earth Dams

• They are trapezoidal in shape.

• Earth dams are constructed where the foundation or


the underlying material or rocks are weak to support
the masonry dam or where the suitable competent
rocks are at greater depth.

• Earthen dams are relatively smaller in height and


broad at the base.

• They are mainly built with clay, sand and gravel,


hence they are also known as Earth fill dam or Rock
fill dam
Classification of Dams

• Based on Size
• Based on function
• Based on material used
Classification based on Size
• Small Dam (<10 m high)
• Medium size Dam (10 – 25 m high)
• Large Dam (>25 m high)
• Major Dam (>150 m high)
Classification based on Purpose
• Hydro-electric dam
• Irrigation dam
• Water supply dam for city for the purposes of drinking
water, recreation, navigation thro canals, industrial use.
• Flood Control
• Habitat dam for fishes & wild life
• Effluent containing dams from industry, mine, factory
etc.
• Multi-purpose dam
Classification based on Material of construction
• Masonry Dam
• Concrete Dam
• Timber Dam
• Steel Dam
• Earth Dam
• Rockfill Dam
• Composite Dam
Classification based on action
• Gravity Dam
• Arch Dam
• Saddle Dam
• Check Dam
• Diversion Dam
• Overflow Dam
• Cofferdam
Gravity Dam Timber Dam

San Luis Dam near Los Bonos,


Steel Dam
California – an Embankment
Dam
Cofferdam

Power generation Plant

Spillway
Hoover Arch Dam
Timber Dam

Steel Dam
Rockfill Dam

Arch Dam

Solid Gravity Dam


Combined Earth & Rockfill Dam

Earth Dam
DAM SITES OF SOME INDIAN DAMS
• Bhakranangal Dam: It is situtated in the gorge of
Sutlej River where rocks consist of alternating bands of light
red clays and fairly hard, thick bedded sandstones with a
steep down stream dip, varying between 700-800 with the
horizontal.
• Hirakud Dam: The dam is situated across the
Mahanadi river. The foundation of rocks consists of Granite
with schistose bands, Granitic gneisses, shales and
quartzites.
• Beas Dam: The foundation rocks at the Beas dam site
consists alternate layers of sandstones and shales of siwalik
• Nagarjunasagar Dam: The rock types exposed
in and around the dam site are the granite gneisses of
the peninsular gneissic complex and the quartzites and
shales belonging srisailam stage of cuddapah system.
• Srisailam Dam: The main rock types are quartzite
boulders, sand intermixed with clay.
Real Life
• Give an example or real life anecdote
• Sympathize with the audience’s situation if appropriate