# lab6_04 - The University of Iowa Department of Civil...

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The University of Iowa Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering Fall Semester, 2004 53:030 Soil Mechanics Lab Experiment No. 6: Seepage Computations Using a FEM Code A. Objective In this laboratory assignment, a finite element program will be used to compute the pressure head distribution and the rate of flow under a dam for a case that would be very difficult to analyze using flow-nets. One objective of this lab assignment is to demonstrate the relative ease and rapidity with which seepage problems can be solved using computer based methods. (In subsequent courses, you'll have the opportunity to learn more about how these computer-based methods actually work.) In this lab, your goal will be to use a finite element program to solve the groundwater flow problem described in Figure 1 of this handout. For the geometry and permeabilities shown, the program solves the following system of equations: The continuity equation: 0 y x z v v v xyz + += ∂∂∂ Generalized Darcy's law: 11 12 13 21 22 23 31 32 33 / / / x y z vk k k h x k k h y k k h z ⎫⎡ ⎪⎪ ⎢⎥ = −∂ ⎬⎨ ⎩⎭ ⎣ where v is the discharge velocity vector, h is the piezometric head of the groundwater, and k is the permeability tensor of each soil. B. Background Because of their conceptual simplicity, flow nets have been emphasized as a method of solving steady-state groundwater flow problems in two-dimensional geometries. In practice, however,

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lab6_04 - The University of Iowa Department of Civil...

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