Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Periodic Report Summary 1 - IMPLOADIS (Spatiotemporal Distribution and Structural impact Loading due to Artificial Debris Objects in Violent Flows)

• A summary description of the project objectives;
The project "Spatiotemporal Distribution and Structural impact LOading due to Artificial Debris Objects in Violent Flows (impLOADis)" encompasses experimental and numerical work on flow-structure interaction at University of Ottawa, Canada and Leibniz University Hannover, Germany. It is researched how artificial debris such as cars, containers, or pieces from destructed buildings can be parametrized and how it spatiotemporally distributes in violent flows as appearing during dam breaks, flash floods, storm surges or tsunamis. Innovative radio-frequency based and inertial measurement technique are applied for object tracking. Impact loading to buildings and infrastructure from multiple artificial debris are assessed which eventually leads to design guideline improvements and aims to contribute to European and international resilience and safety against natural disasters.
• A description of the work performed since the beginning of the project,
The first year of the outgoing phase of the Marie Curie (MC) International Outgoing Fellowship (IOF) was dedicated to physical modeling of multiple debris motion as being propelled by an approaching tsunami-like bore. In accordance with the list of deliverables and milestones, potential debris classes were reviewed in the beginning. Shipping containers were determined to be a major source of threat in coastal regions. Thus, twenty-five (25) 20’ shipping containers were modeled in 1:40 scale from PVC material in accordance with common hydraulic modeling principles. Wooden debris in the form of log and also debris in the form of advected cars is going to be investigated later in the third year of the fellowship.
In preparation for all experiments, the 3D trajectory measurement system was set up and thoroughly tested in the hydraulic lab of the University of Ottawa. For this purpose, one (1) positioning system (Quuppa Oy, Finland), eight (8) inertial measurement units (3-Space Sensors), and five (5) more inertial measurement units (XIO) were purchased. Matlab code was developed to accomplish sensor data fusion obtaining a 6-degree-of-freedom (6-DOF) measurement system capable of remotely sensing multiple object position and orientation.
A second set of experiments involving dam break waves was designed and has been successfully completed before the second year ended. The experiments involved testing of multiple debris in dam break waves with varying strength. Debris dynamics, and multiple impact events were tested. In addition, the details of the entrainment phase into a dam break wave were studied for up to two individual debris specimen under various initial placements. Finally, debris dispersion through a regular grid of obstacles was investigated in detail.
• A description of the main results achieved so far,
The following results were achieved so far:
- The dynamics of debris in the form of shipping containers was parametrized. Parameters such as the spreading angle and the maximum inland displacement were assessed and subsequently compared with available standards and guidelines. It was found that the standard and guideline stipulations are all to be considered on the safe side. It has to be further evaluated what safety margin exists and whether the existing stipulations could be relaxed.
- Existing laboratory instrumentation and sensors could not reliably and effectively track floating or partially-submerged debris in experimental settings. A 6-degree-of-freedom measurement system was developed, thoroughly tested and its capabilities assessed; its application to debris transport studies proved to be useful as it allows to successfully track a large number of individual debris specimen over a large area. In addition, an optical method to track debris on the basis of video recordings was developed which equally proved capable to facilitate experimental research on debris propagation. It successfully tracks up to 6 debris specimen across a horizontal plane.
- Preliminary assessment of multiple impact loads show that large increase in design loads is to be expected and thus, existing standard stipulations with regard to debris impact will need to be updated in the near future.
• The expected final results and their potential impact and use (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project so far).
Final results of the project will serve the society through improved standards and design guidelines. Outreach activities will foster the understanding of the public about tsunami, flash flood and riverine flooding risk; science dissemination and related publications will facilitate and motivate further research amongst coastal engineering peers as the research so far has also revealed major knowledge gaps with regards to debris damming and debris effects which needs to be investigated in the future.


Torsten Schlurmann, (Dean of Faculty and Managing Chair of Franzius-Ins)
Tel.: +49 51176219021
Fax: +49 511 762 4002


Life Sciences
Record Number: 192155 / Last updated on: 2016-12-15
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