The structural calculation methods of the conduits that cross the embankment dams can be divided into two approaches. On the one hand, the estimation of the earth’s characteristics is done by the multiparameter subgrade model, and on the other hand, the usual finite element software describes the parameters of the earth based on the modulus of elasticity. The conduits have a moment of inertia value for the cross section that is combined with the modulus of elasticity of the material (concrete, steel) resulting in a great rigidity to the assembly. This stiffness, quantified in the stiffness matrix, is much higher than the rigidity of the soil. This work goes in two directions: on the one hand, it argues that the complex methods of calculating the soil characteristics are not relevant for conduits that cross the embankment dams. Second in the longitudinal direction, the conduit has joints that diminish the rigidity of the assembly and whose effect cannot be included in the FEM calculation, as it is usually done in a plane strain model. A calculation method is proposed that contains an inertial moment adjustment that takes into account joints. Finally, a computational method is used in which FEM is used with the empirically estimated momentum variation.
Part of the book: Hydraulic Structures