Dams are classified based on a procedural Risk Analysis that determines the potential for loss of life, environmental, socio-economic and cultural heritage losses. Estimating where a dam is most likely to breach, the dimension of the breach and how quickly the breach will grow is critical for any dam risk assessment and, taken together, forms the keystone of any Dam Safety risk management.

In addition, risk-based dam safety assessments are also a key part of prioritizing and planning your long-term safety program. They not only provide the dam owner with a comprehensive understanding what can cause a dam to fail and what the results of that failure will be, they can also play a key role in helping your team design effective emergency response preparedness plans. This, in turn, can help lower a dam’s incremental consequence category. Analyses of the effects of earth movements on the structure, the downstream effects of a break, and geotechnical reviews of the stability of the dam will not only raise safety levels, but will frequently reduce remediation costs when compared to older, rule-of-thumb procedures.

Older dams built in North America also need risk assessments done, as they generally require attention after exceeding their 50-yr design life. Aqua Geomatics provides a full range of services to support owners of these aging dams, helping them to develop strategies for ensuring the safety of their facilities and maintaining compliance with regulatory guidelines.

Either way, hydraulic studies augmented with dam break analyses are crucial in the development and maintenance of any dam, and Aqua Geomatics excels at all forms of dam break analysis. We use state-of-the-art tools, methods, and models to develop a thorough understanding of the expected flow paths, velocities, and flood depths that could result from a breach. We then combine this information with visualization and animation tools that graphically illustrate our results, providing you with a complete, pictorial version of our analysis.

Our services include:

    • Develop and simulate hydraulic models of river system
    • Dam break and levee breach modeling
    • Flood and non-flood (sunny day/fair feather) failures
    • Breach criteria for earthen and concrete dams
    • Individual and cascade failure
    • Consequence estimation
    • Spillway adequacy
    • Freeboard