Stabilitly analysis of large structures founded on rock : an introductory study

Abstract: Previous investigations of Swedish and international dams have shown difficultiesto assess the safety against failure in rock foundations. The problem was alsogiven additional interest in connection to the recent construction of the newbridge at Traneberg in Stockholm. This project was created in order to increasethe knowledge in the subject of stability analysis of large structures founded onrock, and how they should be performed in order to describe the safety in areliable way. This thesis covers the first half of this project. The objectives of the thesis were todescribe the knowledge and current state of practice in the subject with a literaturestudy, and with a case study of the arch dam at Krokströmmen show the problemsfor stability analyses where foundation and structure interact. The objective wasalso to produce a foundation for future work. At Krokströmmen arch dam, previous three dimensional finite element analyseshave been performed (Johansson and Palmgren 1996). In these analyses, thestiffness of the foundation was not considered. Based on the results from theseanalyses, stability was analytically analyzed for each monolith by Stille et al.(2002). The results indicated low factors of safety for the central monoliths. As aconsequence, a reinforcement slab was constructed to increase stability. In order to show how varying stiffness and non-linear resistance of the foundationaffects stability, a quasi three dimensional finite element analyses were carriedout. In these analyses, five of the central monoliths were first analyzed separately.Thereafter, the reaction forces were adjusted to fit the results from the analyses byJohansson and Palmgren (1996). The monoliths were thereafter coupled togetherwith assumptions of equal deformations and constant total reaction forces for thefive monoliths. Through an iterative procedure, constant deformation and newredistributed reaction forces were obtained. These forces were used to discuss thestability for one of the monoliths in detail. This thesis shows that the problem is more complex than described in the Swedishdam safety guidelines, RIDAS (Svensk Energi 2002), and the Swedish bridgedesign code, BRO 2004 (Vägverket 2004). An accurate analysis of the stability ina rock foundation under large structures demands a more refined approach, whichconsiders the specific features associated with rock mechanical problems. Thecase study showed that the interaction between foundation and structure can beconsiderable; deformations and reaction forces acting on the foundation wereredistributed when the stiffness of the foundation was considered. Furthermore,the resistance is a function of deformation. These aspects are necessaryconsidering if stability should be determined with high confidence. An additional question which was identified and brought up for discussion wasthe possibility of time-dependent deformation in the foundation at Krokströmmendue to creep and cyclic loading, which in turn can affect the long term stability.