Evaluation of Analysis Methods used for the Assessment of I-walls Stability

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Virginia Tech


On Monday, 29 August 2005, Hurricane Katrina struck the U.S. gulf coast. The storm caused damage to 169 miles of the 284 miles that compose the Hurricane Protection System (HPS) of the area. The system suffered 46 breaches due to water levels overtopping and another four caused by instability due to soil foundation failure. The Interagency Performance Evaluation Task Force (IPET) conducted a study to analyze what happened on the I-wall breach of the various New Orleans flood control structures and looked for solutions to improve the design of these floodwalls.

The purpose of the investigation, describe in this document, is to evaluate different methods to improve the analysis model created by IPET, select the best possible analysis techniques, and apply them to a current cross-section that did not fail during Hurrican Katrina. The use of Finite Element (FE) analysis to obtain the vertical total stress distribution in the vicinity of the I-wall and to calculate pore pressures proved to be an effective enhancement. The influence of overconsolidation on the shear strength distribution of the foundation soils was examined as well.



Slope Stability, OCR