Preprints

Filtering by Subject: Civil and Environmental Engineering

The role of natural clays in the sustainability of landfill liners

Mercedes Regadío, Jonathan A. Black, Steven F Thornton

Published: 2020-01-10
Subjects: Civil and Environmental Engineering, Earth Sciences, Engineering, Environmental Sciences, Geochemistry, Geology, Geotechnical Engineering, Physical Sciences and Mathematics

Engineered synthetic liners on their own are not the ideal solution to protect land, water and living beings against landfill leachate pollution. Despite their impermeability, engineered liners are susceptible to fail during installation and after a few years of landfill operation, and have no attenuation properties. Conversely, natural clay liners can attenuate leachate pollutants by reactions [...]

A web application for hydrogeomorphic flood hazard mapping

Ricardo Tavares da Costa, Salvatore Manfreda, Valerio Luzzi, Caterina Samela, Paolo Mazzoli, Attilio Castellarin, Stefano Bagli

Published: 2020-01-08
Subjects: Civil and Environmental Engineering, Earth Sciences, Engineering, Hydraulic Engineering, Hydrology, Physical Sciences and Mathematics

A detailed delineation of flood-prone areas over large regions represents a challenge that cannot be easily solved with today’s resources. The main limitations lie in algorithms and hardware, but also costs, scarcity and sparsity of data and our incomplete knowledge of how inundation events occur in different river floodplains. We showcase the implementation of a data-driven web application for [...]

The interplay between clay fabric and mechanical response of deep-seated landslides

Carolina Seguí, Esperanca Tauler, Xavier Planas, Jose Moya, Emmanouil Veveakis

Published: 2019-12-05
Subjects: Civil and Environmental Engineering, Earth Sciences, Engineering, Geology, Geotechnical Engineering, Physical Sciences and Mathematics

Deep-seated landslides are amongst the most devastating natural hazards on earth, typically involving a rigid rock mass sliding over a weak, clayey shear-band. The mechanical response of this shear-band to the loading of the overburden is therefore critical for the stability of a landslide. We hereby show that this mechanical response is strongly linked to the mineralogy and microstructure of the [...]

Optical wave gauging using deep neural networks

Daniel Buscombe, Roxanne Carini, Shawn Harrison, Chris Chickadel, Jonathan Warrick

Published: 2019-12-04
Subjects: Civil and Environmental Engineering, Earth Sciences, Engineering, Geomorphology, Physical Sciences and Mathematics

We develop a remote wave gauging technique to estimate wave height and period from imagery of waves in the surf zone. In this proof-of-concept study, we apply the same framework to three datasets: the first, a set of close-range monochrome infrared (IR) images of individual nearshore waves at Duck, NC, USA; the second, a set of visible (i.e. RGB) band orthomosaics of a larger nearshore area near [...]

Urban Near-surface Seismic Monitoring using Distributed Acoustic Sensing

Gang Fang, Yunyue Elita Li, Yumin Zhao, Eileen R Martin

Published: 2019-11-26
Subjects: Civil and Environmental Engineering, Civil Engineering, Earth Sciences, Engineering, Geophysics and Seismology, Physical Sciences and Mathematics

Urban subsurface monitoring requires high temporal-spatial resolution, low maintenance cost, and minimal intrusion to nearby life. Distributed acoustic sensing (DAS), in contrast to conventional station-based sensing technology, has the potential to provide a passive seismic solution to urban monitoring requirements. Based on data recorded by the Stanford Fiber Optic Seismic Observatory, we [...]

Effects of off-fault inelasticity on near-fault directivity pulses

Yongfei Wang, Steven M. Day

Published: 2019-11-26
Subjects: Civil and Environmental Engineering, Engineering, Geotechnical Engineering

Near-fault motion is often dominated by long-period, pulse-like particle velocities with fault-normal polarization that, when enhanced by directivity, may strongly excite mid- to high-rise structures. We assess the extent to which plastic yielding may affect amplitude, frequency content, and distance scaling of near-fault directivity pulses. Dynamic simulations of 3D strike-slip ruptures reveal [...]

Simulating Electropulse Fracture of Granitic Rock

Stuart Walsh, Daniel Vogler

Published: 2019-11-22
Subjects: Civil and Environmental Engineering, Earth Sciences, Engineering, Geology, Geotechnical Engineering, Mining Engineering, Physical Sciences and Mathematics

Electropulse treatments employ a series of high-voltage discharges to break rock into small fragments. As these methods are particularly suited to fracturing hard brittle rocks, electropulse treatments can serve to enhance or substitute for more traditional mechanical approaches to drilling and processing of these materials. Nevertheless, while these treatments have the potential to improve [...]

Dynamic modelling of overprinted impermeable fault gouges and surrounding damage zones as lower dimensional interfaces

Thomas Poulet, Martin Lesueur, Ulrich Kelka

Published: 2019-11-14
Subjects: Chemical Engineering, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Computational Engineering, Engineering, Petroleum Engineering

In the modelling of subsurface fluid flow, faults are dominant features since they can act as fluid pathways or barriers. Special emphasis is therefore placed in representing them in a numerically efficient manner and the use of lower dimensional domains has become prevalent to simulate higher permeability features like fractures. Such features, however, only represent some of the components of [...]

A note on the instability and pattern formation of shrinkage cracks in viscoplastic soils

Emmanouil Veveakis, Thomas Poulet

Published: 2019-11-07
Subjects: Civil and Environmental Engineering, Engineering, Materials Science and Engineering

In this note we present a theoretical study on the conditions for the onset of cracks, as well as the corresponding pattern formation, in saturated viscoplastic soils under isotropic loading (extension). The type of stress applied is left unspecified, to cover a variety of loadings including shrinkage due to dessication, isotropic thermal expansion, mechanical loading and so forth. By treating [...]

Over 1000 rivers accountable for 80% of global riverine plastic emissions into the ocean

Lourens Jan Jakob Meijer, Tim van Emmerik, Laurent Lebreton, Christian Schmidt, Ruud van der Ent

Published: 2019-10-24
Subjects: Civil and Environmental Engineering, Engineering, Environmental Engineering

Plastic waste increasingly accumulates in the marine environment, but data on the distribution and quantification of riverine sources, required for development of effective mitigation, are limited. Our new model approach includes geographical distributed data on plastic waste, landuse, wind, precipitation and rivers and calculates the probability for plastic waste to reach a river and [...]

Network topology and rainfall controls on the variability of combined sewer overflows and loads

Gavan McGrath, Thoma Kaeseberg, Julian David Reyes Silva, James Jawitz, Frank Blumensaat, Dietrich Borchardt, Kyungrock Paik, Per-Erik Mellander, Peter Krebs, P. Suresh C. Rao

Published: 2019-10-24
Subjects: Civil and Environmental Engineering, Engineering, Environmental Engineering

Water and pollutant fluxes from combined sewer overflows (CSO) have a significant impact on receiving waters. The random nature of rainfall forcing dominates the variability of sewer discharges, pollutant loads, and concentrations. An analytical model developed here, shows how sewer network topology and rainfall properties variously impact the stochasticity of CSO functioning. Probability [...]

The sensitivity of estimates of multiphase fluid and solid properties of porous rocks to image processing

Gaetano Garfi, Cédric M. John, Steffen Berg, Sam Krevor

Published: 2019-10-10
Subjects: Chemical Engineering, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Earth Sciences, Engineering, Hydrology, Petroleum Engineering, Physical Sciences and Mathematics, Transport Phenomena

X-ray microcomputed tomography X-ray microCT) is a rapidly advancing technology that has been successfully employed to study flow phenomena in porous media. It offers an alternative approach to core scale experiments for the estimation of traditional petrophysical properties such as porosity and single-phase flow permeability. It can also be used to investigate properties that control multiphase [...]

Does a damaged fault zone mitigate the near-field landslide risk during supershear earthquakes?—Application to the 2018 magnitude 7.5 Palu earthquake.

Elif Oral, Huihui Weng, Jean-Paul Ampuero

Published: 2019-10-03
Subjects: Civil and Environmental Engineering, Earth Sciences, Engineering, Geotechnical Engineering, Physical Sciences and Mathematics

The impact of earthquakes can be severely aggravated by cascading secondary hazards. The 2018 Mw 7.5 Palu, Indonesia earthquake led to devastating tsunamis and landslides, while triggered submarine landslides possibly contributed substantially to generate the tsunami. The rupture was supershear over most of its length, but its speed was unexpectedly low, between the S-wave velocity Vs and [...]

Paradoxical impact of sprawling intra-Urban Heat Islets: Reducing mean surface temperatures while enhancing local extremes

Anamika Shreevastava, Saiprasanth Bhalachandran, Gavan McGrath, Matthew Huber, P. Suresh C. Rao

Published: 2019-09-09
Subjects: Civil and Environmental Engineering, Earth Sciences, Engineering, Life Sciences, Physical Sciences and Mathematics, Statistics and Probability

Cities are at the forefront of climate change impacts and face a growing burden of adaptation to ensuing natural hazards. Extreme heat is a particularly challenging hazard as persistent heatwaves are locally exacerbated by the Urban Heat Island (UHI) effect. As a result, there is an increasing scientific interest in the influence of diverse urban morphologies on UHI. However, as the temperatures [...]

Hydropower dependency and climate change in sub-Saharan Africa: A nexus framework and evidence-based review

Giacomo Falchetta, David E.H.J. Gernaat, Julian Hunt, Sebastian Sterl

Published: 2019-09-06
Subjects: Civil and Environmental Engineering, Earth Sciences, Engineering, Environmental Sciences, Environmental Studies, International and Area Studies, Physical Sciences and Mathematics, Social and Behavioral Sciences

In sub-Saharan Africa, 160 million grid-connected electricity consumers live in countries where hydropower accounts for over 50% of total power supply. A warmer climate with more frequent and intense extremes could result in supply reliability issues. Here, (i) a robust framework to highlight the interdependencies between hydropower, water availability, and climate change is proposed, (ii) the [...]

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