(Received 13 December 1998; accepted 27 April 2001)
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This paper reports on the potential performance of earthfill and tailings dams, and other saturated earthen structures, subjected to blast vibrations. Relationships between explosive-induced residual pore pressure increase and crest settlement versus peak particle velocity are presented. Eight explosive tests, conducted on a 2.25-m-high dam constructed of loose dilative sand, showed that significant increases in residual pore pressure (PPR > 0.1) occurred when peak particle velocity exceeded 0.015 m/s at shallow depths to 0.035 m/s at greater depths. Limited crest settlement occurred when the peak particle velocity exceeded 0.025 m/s. Results of this research, previous research, and the field behavior of full-scale earthfill and tailings dams indicate that peak particle velocity below 0.025 m/s and 0.10 m/s are reasonable thresholds to limit pore pressure buildup in full-size earthfill and tailings dams sensitive and not sensitive to vibrations, respectively.
Professor, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO
Civil engineer, California Department of Transportation, Sacramento, CA
Emeritus professor, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO
Stock #: GTJ11136J