3D Finite Element analysis of a complex hydropower project

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The objective of the paper is to summarize results from three-dimensional finite element analyses performed in order to assess the performance of the two main caverns of a hydro power plant project. Of main concern are the stress redistribution within the surrounding rock and the settlement behaviour of the cavern powerhouse during the different excavation phases.
The geology in the region of the two main caverns is relatively homogeneous and consists predominantly of granite-gneiss material. As a consequence of the very complex geometrical conditions of this boundary value problem full 3D modelling is required. To investigate the behaviour of the shotcrete lining additional 2D finite element analyses have been performed where the three shotcrete layers of the powerhouse cavern are modelled with an advanced constitutive model for shotcrete (taking account of tension softening).
The results obtained with 3D analyses show that next to the side tunnels stress concentrations in the rock mass have to be expected. The results of the 2D FEA, using the advanced shotcrete model, were used to identify critical zones with respect to the shotcrete lining.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication13th International Conference entitled “Underground Construction Prague 2016”
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - May 2016

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