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Mathematical Problems in Engineering
Volume 2014, Article ID 467369, 9 pages
Research Article

Contributions of Flexible-Arch Configurations in Shimenzi Arch Dam: New Evidence from Field Measurements

State Key Laboratory of Hydroscience and Engineering, Department of Hydraulic Engineering, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China

Received 27 December 2013; Accepted 13 February 2014; Published 19 March 2014

Academic Editor: Fei Kang

Copyright © 2014 Jianwen Zhong et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This paper presents a retrospective investigation into the performance of a new type of flexible-arch configurations in Shimenzi arch dam based on the past ten-year-long field measurements. The flexible-arch configurations are mainly comprised of artificial short joints at the middle downstream surface and a middle contraction joint with hinged well and enlarged arch ends with bending joints. Fundamental design considerations of these components are provided, and their contributions to the performance of Shimenzi arch dam are discussed in detail using the monitoring data from joint meters, strain gauges, and thermometers. Some elementary numerical studies have been conducted on a typical arch structure with different arrangements of artificial joints. Both the field data and numerical results prove well the effectiveness of the purposely built short joints and the middle contraction joint on the relaxation of tensile stress mobilization. Field survey data also clearly demonstrate the significance of the hinged well at the upstream side of the middle joint for a continuous arch force transfer.