March 22, 2024

2024-03-22 02:00 PM 2024-03-22 03:00 PM le futur en vedette - Influence des charges répétées de véhicules lourds sur l'endommagement du noyau des barrages en remblai N.A. America/New_York

Featuring the Future

Influence of repeated heavy vehicle loads on the damage to the core of embankment dams

Friday, March 22, 2024: 2pm - 3pm EST

dam picEmbankment dams are not specifically designed for heavy vehicle traffic on their crests. Nevertheless, the demand for such use is growing, particularly from electricity producers, mining, and forestry industries. Allowing transit on the dam crests would ensure accessibility to the structures and surrounding territories. Progressive damage associated with vehicle traffic is likely to affect dyke and dam performance and therefore raises certain concerns among dam owners and operator s. Practical tools and experimental data would be beneficial to the mana gers to make informed decisions, while contributing to increase the actual knowledge and to improve the understanding of the dam's mechanical response when subjected to passing of heavy vehicles.

 Expected outcome for participants 


Maxime Blanchette

Maxime is a master’s student in civil engineering at Université Laval. He also received a bachelor’s degree in geological engineering from Université Laval in 2022. Under the guidance of Dr. J.P. Bilodeau and Dr. Erdrick Perez-Gonzalez, his research focusesonthe effect of heavy vehicles repeated loads on earth dams. The project is supported by Hydro-Québec. Through field measurements, laboratory testing and numerical modeling, his aim is to provide dam managers with analysis methods to assess the damage induced by heavy vehicles and ensure the long-term performance and safety of the dams. It is anticipated that this research will provide useful information and tools to manage strategic infrastructures and to take optimal decisions for allowing transit on dams, either for internal needs or socioeconomic development of northern regions. 

Alongside his studies, Maxime has always pursued his passion for hockey. After playing and coaching in Quebec's elite leagues, he now holds a scouting position with the Rimouski Oceanic in the QMJHL. Hockey has allowed him to develop intangible qualities such as work ethic, leadership, and teamwork.


Jean-Pascal Bilodeau

Jean-Pascal Bilodeau is a geological engineer and obtained his PhD degree in civil engineering at Université Laval in 2009. As an assistant professor in the Department of Civil and Water Engineering at Université Laval, he holds the Sentinel North ResearchChair on northern infrastructures. His main field of expertise is on the design, analysis,and performance of transportation infrastructures in cold climates.




Caius Priscu, Priscu and Associates Consulting Engineers (Honours and Awards Committee Rep)