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Name: Amber
Status: student
Grade: 6-8
Location: NM 
Country: N/A
Date: 11/29/2005


Question:
How are levees built? How can you make levees stronger?


Replies:
Levees are normally two different types, depending on the soils, the protection height and the space available and most important the cost.

levee pic levee pic


Some levees are constructed of soil. If you took a knife and sliced through the levee and looked at it from the side, a cross section, the shape of the levee is a trapezoid. click on the little sketch below. The width of the base and the slopes of the sides are stable for the materials (soil) used. The mass resists the forces of the water.

But you can see it takes much room and the levee soils and the soil underneath are critical.

Another type is a wall, the sketch at the right. The straight wall is usually steel sheet piling which can go quite deep. The other option is the "L" type shown above, it is made of concrete. The wall is designed to resist the water force while tasking into account the pressures and behavior of the soils. All the materials in either solution have been sampled, tested and constructed according to codes. That sentence is the key to making the levee stronger, if there are any mistakes it causes weakness and potential failures.

James Przewoznik



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