Comparative Investigation of Trial load and Finite Element Methods in Analysis of Arch Dams
Vahid Nourani

Prof. Vahid Nourani, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Tabriz, Tabriz, Iran.
Manuscript received on July 05, 2016. | Revised Manuscript received on July 09, 2016. | Manuscript published on September 30, 2016. | PP: 1-5 | Volume-6 Issue-4, September 2016. | Retrieval Number: D2886096416/2017©BEIESP
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Abstract: Because of important role of dams and dam construction in human life, in the present paper the method of analysis of an important kind of dam (arch dam) has been presented in two different scientific ways and their results have been compared. In the method presented herein, the dam has been divided into horizontal elements of arcs and vertical elements of cantilevers, and using compatibility of displacements and trial and error (trial load method) the share of cantilevers and arcs from applied loads on dam have been determined. Then another analysis has been performed using Finite Element Method (FEM) by indicating stiffness matrix using iso-parametric hexahedral elements with eight nodes. Using the available equations, the displacements of nodes have been calculated. Because of high volume of calculations, computer has been used and software has been prepared. The results of these two methods have been compared to each-other. The results show that the trial load method is a reliable method in spite of the fact that simplifying assumptions have been used in its theory. As a result, an arch dam can be easily analyzed by trial load method. Also, to get more accurate results, more complete methods are necessary to solve FEM equations.
Keywords: Arch dam, Trial load method, Finite Element Method, Arc analysis, Cantilever analysis.