Indian Geotechnical Journal

, Volume 48, Issue 4, pp 728–745 | Cite as

Arching Parametric Study on Earth Dams by Numerical Modeling: A Case Study on Darian Dam

  • Masoud EsmaeilzadehEmail author
  • Mahdy Talkhablou
  • Kamal Ganjalipour
Original Paper


Arching is one of the destructive events that can possibly take place in earth dams. In this research, Darian earth dam-located at the west of Iran-was selected as the model in order to achieve the numerical modeling of earth dams. To achieve this, the authors used the finite element method via Plaxis software (V 8.5) in the cross and longitudinal section in order to study the rate of arching parametrically. In the cross section, 55 models were made to study the correlation of poisson ratio, cohesion, elastic modulus, core slope, correlation of core thickness related to the filters thickness. In the longitudinal section, 19 models were made to examine the parameters of canyon gradient and the correlation of dam heights to the dam width. The result of numerical modeling and statistical analysis revealed that increasing the elastic modulus, poisson ratio, internal friction angle, and the proportion of core thickness to filters thickness, will result in decreased arching. On the other hand, increasing the core gradient, valley gradient and correlation of height to the dam width will increase arching. Moreover, it was found that cohesion has no specific effect on arching.


Arching factor Darian dam Numerical modeling Plaxis Statistical analysis 



Arching factor


Elastic modulus (KN/m2)


Poisson ratio


Cohesion (KN/m2)


Internal friction angle (Degree)


Core thickness to filters thickness (Degree)


Dam heights to valley width


Valley gradient (degree)



The authors also wish to thank to the Mahab-Ghods Consulting Engineers for their cooperation and assistance for this study. The authors would like to appreciate Mr. Hassan Mohamadi and Mr. Abouzar Haghshenas for their help.


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Copyright information

© Indian Geotechnical Society 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Masoud Esmaeilzadeh
    • 1
    Email author
  • Mahdy Talkhablou
    • 1
  • Kamal Ganjalipour
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of applied Geology, Faculty of Geological ScienceKharazmi UniversityTehranIran

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