Detailed distinct element modeling of a Utrecht wharf cellar for the assessment of the load-bearing capacity and failure mechanism

Y.P. Oktiovan*, F. Messali, J.G. Rots

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review

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Abstract

The city of Utrecht is famously known for the system of canals and the wharf cellars integrated to the heart of the city, whose construction dates back to the 1300s. Due to increased traffic volume which caused the increase in dead load and traffic load, it is important to assess the safety and state of maintenance of these historical structures. In this paper, a safety assessment framework for wharf cellars is introduced and the application to a wharf cellar as a case study in central Utrecht is provided. The geometry of the wharf cellar is parametrically generated and used for the numerical analysis using the distinct element method (DEM), where arch units and piers are modeled as discrete blocks separated by zero-thickness interfaces. Traffic load models in accordance with the Dutch guideline for emergency vehicles are calculated. Unlike traditional approaches, the three-dimensional load distribution through the soil is modeled. The structure’s compliance with this load is assessed, and the failure load
and mechanism are observed. The analysis result can be used to help engineers on providing insights into the safety and stability of the cellars in an effort to extend the lifespan of the historical structures.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the Seventeenth International Conference on Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering Computing
EditorsB.H.V. Topping, P. Iványi, J. Kruis
Place of PublicationEdinburgh
PublisherCivil-Comp Press
Number of pages10
Volume6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2023
EventSeventeenth International Conference on Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering Computing 2023 - Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, University of Pécs, Pécs, Hungary
Duration: 28 Aug 202331 Aug 2023
https://www.civil-comp.info/2023/cc23/

Conference

ConferenceSeventeenth International Conference on Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering Computing 2023
Abbreviated titleCIVIL-COMP 2023
Country/TerritoryHungary
CityPécs
Period28/08/2331/08/23
Internet address

Keywords

  • Utrecht wharf cellar
  • distinct element method
  • 3DEC
  • traffic load
  • barrel vault
  • Boussinesq distribution
  • safety assessment

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