GPR FOR DAM SAFETY - NON-DESTRUCTIVE TESTING & EVALUATION
Ground Penetrating Radar is a very effective tool in the delineation of rock fabric, detecting voids, depth of compaction, and identifying karst features and sinkholes in the subsurface. Dam investigations can provide information on sediment build up, rip rap monitoring, and leak and void detection.
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Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) is one of the many effective geophysical tools for investigating voids, fissures, and fractures in dam infrastructure. GPR offers non-destructive testing and investigation of defects in concrete or earthen dam structures like spillways, rip rap, buttresses, etc. These defects or deformations can occur because of water saturation, erosion, water load, or any number of engineering faults which can put human life in danger.
Low frequency GPR systems can offer a number of non-destructive testing options for dam monitoring. The 200 HS system can be used in freshwater to generate a bathymetric analysis, understand the potential flow of water underneath the dam, assess any other damage to internal structure, or to monitor rip rap. Other low frequency options can show the interior of large and/or very deep structures to locate large voids, fractures, or leaks. The ability to collect large amounts of data that can be difficult to obtain using invasive methods makes low frequency GPR the go‑to for a quick geophysical analysis.
Concrete condition assessment can be easily performed using a high frequency system. These antennas provide sharp vertical resolution for imaging rebar, small voids, and fissures as well as enabling useful slab analysis. High frequency antennas image small scale deterioration, delamination, and other sub-par engineering which can be damaging to the interior structure of the dam. Pinpoint questionable locations within the concrete slab or other shallow survey areas to prevent catastrophic failures.
For more information about the widest range of geophysical and seismic techniques, services, and technologies to address non-invasive investigation and the maintenance and monitoring of Dams, Embankments and Levees check out The Dam Safety Group