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Understanding flow slides in flood defenses

Project number 
Project leader W.S.J. Uijttewaal
Technische Universiteit Delft
Afdeling Hydraulic Engineering

Type project 
End date 
30 June 2018

During flow slides thousands of cubic meters of sediments move within seconds to hours downwards along a submerged slope. Being able to estimate the risk that flow slides pose to flood defences is vital for the safety of low-lying, densely populated coastal regions. This requires understanding the involved complex processes within the eroding slope and the turbulent water flow above its dissolving surface. A numerical method, the material point method (MPM) which is able to model these processes in a uniform framework is enhanced in this interdisciplinary project for the analyses of flow slides. This requires new solutions for the modelling of turbulent water flow, of soil erosion, transport and deposition and of heterogeneities of the subsoil. Models will be derived from laboratory and field experiments and translated into robust, efficient numerical models. The obtained MPM-based solution, thoroughly validated through experiments, will be provided to experts in industry, consultancy, academia and government agencies.

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