Designing Roller compacted concrete (RCC) dams

University essay from KTH/Betongbyggnad; KTH/Betongbyggnad

Abstract: Concrete is the most common building material in the world and it consists of aggregates,cement and water that harden over time, it is also known as a composite material. The use ofconcrete is very versatile due to its resistance to wind and water and its ability to withstandhigh temperature. These qualities make concrete a suitable building material for largestructures such as dams.A dam is a huge construction that needs massive amount of concrete to build it with and thatleads to high cost, so alternative methods should be considered to minimize the cost ofconstructing the dams. One method is building the dams with Roller Compacted Concrete(RCC), which by definition is a composite construction material with no-slump consistency inits unhardened state and it has achieved its name from the construction method. The definitionfor a no-slump consistency is a freshly mixed concrete with a slump less than 6 mm. TheRCC is placed with the help of paving equipment and then it is compacted by vibrating rollerequipment. The RCC ingredients are the same as for the conventional concrete but it hasdifferent ratios in the materials that are blended to produce the concrete. It differs when itcomes to aggregates because both similar aggregates used in conventional concrete oraggregates that do not fulfill the normal standards can be used in the RCC mixtures. Thismeans, for example that aggregates found on the construction site can be used for the RCC.Compared to when constructing a conventional concrete dam, which is usually built in largeblocks, the RCC dam are usually built in thin, horizontal lifts, which allows rapidconstruction. This reduces the amount of formwork, but also the demand for man-hours areless due to the usage of machines for spreading and compacting, ultimately making it acheaper method. Building with RCC has become very popular around the world because of itsadvantages and new methods have been developed over the past two decades, adapted to theexperience gained after each project. All RCC dams that has been built, usually faceschallenges both during and after construction, and it includes everything from temperaturevariations, cracks to leakage.The main purpose of this master thesis is to create a guideline for how to design and constructdams with RCC and the idea is to be able to use it as a basis for future dams. Therequirements of Eurocode 2 and RIDAS are the basis of the criteria that the dam must fulfilland information of what is expected of the RCC is presented in this thesis. Furthermore anexample for design of an existing embankment dam to an RCC dam has been presented in thisthesis. The embankment dam needs to be rebuilt in order to increase the safety of the dam andthe goal of the case study was to determine the dimensions of the new RCC dam.

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