Surveillance, monitoring, management
Dam safety services
When we build dams, we build them to last. We operate them for decades and eventually we rehabilitate them in order to maintain or improve their efficiency and overall safety. We have built a reputation over many decades designing and supervising the construction, rehabilitation, and modernisation of some of the largest dams in the world.
Dam safety is ensured by continually adapting to changing conditions, this in turn may mean adapting the structures to resist against, for example, greater flood height due to increased glacier melting, or greater seismic activity, some dams may be affected by a chemical reaction in the concrete; or indeed, any combination of different conditions may affect the safety status of a dam at any one time. We have the experience and the knowledge required to model the behaviour of an existing dam thus allowing our engineers to integrate any modification required to increase the dam's safety.
Historically in Switzerland, the monitoring of dams has always been a widely followed and hotly debated topic. The country, renowned for its engineering skills, has always been at the forefront of technical developments and has often set an example at international level.
What is involved in dam monitoring and surveillance?
As dams age, particular attention is paid to detect any anomalies as early as possible. Monitoring these dams is an integral part of the overall approach to safety adopted by dam owners in Switzerland. Together with structural safety and the action plan for emergencies, it is one of the three pillars that ensure optimum safety of these installations. In parallel, the correct management of the monitoring regulations and documentation for each dam is guaranteed through the use of simple and effective monitoring processes.
What experience do we have in dam safety?
As a well-established engineering consultancy, we have been active for over nine decades in the field of dam construction & rehabilitation, continuous dam monitoring and dam safety in general. Several of our senior staff have been appointed as dam experts by the Swiss authorities and as such ensure the highest level of safety for over twenty large dams in Switzerland. We have been involved in providing technical assistance for the definition and study of or the revision of the dam safety regulatory frameworks and also for the dam safety regulation works of several countries including Iran, China, Turkey, Myanmar and Georgia.
Our dam safety projects involve our experts undertaking the monthly analysis of the measurements provided by certain clients who monitor their own dams, we provide immediate warning in case of critical values. Our experts also carry out annual dam inspections and prepare annual engineer’s reports on their status. These reports are then transmitted to the Swiss Federal Water Management Authority.
What dam safety services do we offer?
Our team of multidisciplinary experts can perform comprehensive inspection, reviews all aspects of the design, operation, maintenance, condition and performance of all dam types and power plants. Our services include:
- Comprehensive dam safety inspection and assessment
- Dam break analysis, flood assessment and hazard mapping
- Seismic assessment
- Comprehensive operations and management support including training
- In-situ testing, stability analysis and seepage assessment of the geotechnical conditions of the Dam and power house foundations
- Dam Instrumentation and monitoring schemes, and the elaboration of Emergency Preparedness Plans (EPP)
- Alkali Aggregate Reaction (AAR) diagnosis, treatment and management
- Structural stability analysis including Finite Element Modelling (FEM)
- Dam and powerhouse rehabilitation design and construction supervision
- Definition and study of or the revision of the dam safety regulatory frameworks and also for dam safety regulation works