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Effect of Bad Spots in the Grass Cover on the Stability of Dikes During Overtopping

Author(s): Katinka Koll; Thomas Schoneboom

Linked Author(s): Katinka Koll

Keywords: Stability; Erodibility; Grass; Soil; Overtopping; Steep slopes

Abstract: The most important measure for flood protection are dikes, i.e. earth dams covered by grass. Due to maintenance with sheep or cattle the grass cover can be damaged leading to bad spots. Laboratory experiments were carried out to investigate the stability of intact and damaged grass covers on steep slopes. Naturally grown grass turfs were taken from three sites at the River Elbe in Lower Saxony resulting in differing qualities of the grass cover and soil types. Results show that the stability of grass turfs is decreased considerably due to bad spots even in case of a silty clay. The stability of an intact grass turf with sandy soil but dense and homogeneous grass cover is, on the other hand, comparable to the stability of a silty clay turf. If weak grass turfs (sandy soil, sparse grass cover) are damaged by bad spots the vegetation has virtually no stabilizing effects.


Year: 2009

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