Novel Particle Model for the Prediction of Stability and Episodic Collapse of Coastal Cliffs and Levees
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This thesis investigates the WCSPH model by considering fluid entry and exit, and integrates the WCSPH method into a new, novel, particle-based Bluff Morphology Model (BMM). Using the BMM, this thesis investigates the stability, collapse and equilibrium position of soft coastal bluffs (cliffs). Fluid and floating object interaction using a novel adaptation of the WCSPH method is investigated by incorporating a floating object model. In particular, this thesis examines the water impact, hydrodynamic forces, fluid motions, and movement of objects in the conventional case studies of object entry and exit from still water. A two-dimensional wedge drop analysis was examined, and the hydrodynamic forces show acceptable agreement with published experimental and numerical results. Simulations for water entry and exit of a buoyant and neutral density cylinder compares well with the previous experimental, numerical and empirical studies. These results provide a good foundation to evaluate the accuracy and stability of WCSPH for modelling complex flows, and therefore offers a platform for the use of WCSPH in a Bluff Morphology Model. The BMM combines a multiple wedge displacement method with an adapted Weakly Compressible Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics (WCSPH) method. At first the wedge method is applied to compute the stability of the bluff. Once the critical failure mechanism of the bluff slope has been identified, if the Factor of Safety for the mechanism is less than 1, the adapted WCSPH method is used to predict the failure movement and residual shape of the slope. The model is validated against benchmark test cases of bluff stability for purely frictional, purely cohesive, and mixed strength bluff materials including 2D static water tables. The model predictions give a good correlation with the expected values, with medium resolution models producing errors of typically less than 2.0%. In addition, the prediction of lateral movement of a surveyed cliff and the dynamic collapse of a vertical bluff are computed, and compare well with published literature. This model is further extended to then investigate the effect of two dimensional seepage on the stability and collapse of soil slopes and levees. To incorporate the seepage in the model, Darcy’s Law is applied to the interactions among neighbouring soil particles and ghost particles are introduced along the enclosed soil boundary to ensure that no fluid crosses the boundary. The contribution of partially saturated soils and matric suction, as well as the change in hydraulic conductivity due to seepage, are predicted well by this model. The predicted time evolution of slope stability and seepage induced collapse are in reasonable agreement with the experimental results for homogeneous frictional sand and multiple layered cohesive soils. Rapid drawdown over a sand soil is also investigated, and the location and time of the levee collapse occurrence are captured well. A toe erosion model is incorporated within the numerical model, and the location and quantity of erosion caused by lateral seepage is well predicted. The interplay of erosion, seepage and slope instability is examined.
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