Discussion Topic : Minutes of the 1st ISSMGE TC210 Meeting (Email Meeting)


ISSMGE TC210 Embankment Dams

Date:  3-11 August 2018



The minutes have been prepared based on the discussions via email during the meeting between 3-11 August 2018.


Attendants (via email)



Limin Zhang (Chair)


Malcolm Eddleston


Zuyu Chen


Miguel Pando


Daniel Pradel


Sven Knutsson


Didiek Djarwadi


Shailesh Gandhi


Eduardo Oscar Capdevila


Angelo  Amorosi


Daniele Cazzuffi


Rui Wang  (Secretary)


Pierre Delage


Jianhong Zhang





  1. Restructure and membership of TC210


ISSMGE restructured TC210 on Embankment Dams in June 2018. The Board of the ISSMGE has decided, in their meeting on 6 June 2018, to follow a proposal from the Chinese member society to appoint Prof. Limin Zhang (The Hong-Kong University of Science and Technology) as the new chair of TC210, for a period of two years.  Refer to the email to all TC210 members, dated 20 June 2018 from Prof. Pierre Delage, Chair of the Technical Oversight Committee of the ISSMGE.


Given this short period, it was decided to keep the same list of members nominated by the member societies.


Four additional members were nominated by the TC chair in July 2018:

Prof. Chen, ZY (Former ISSMGE Vice President Asia, China),

Dr. Eddleston, Malcolm (Technical Director, Ground Engineering, UK),

Dr. Hoeg, Karre (Former President of ICOLD, Norway),

Dr. Tournier, Jean-Pierre (Chair of ICOLD TC on Embankment Dams, Canada).


Dr. Rui Wang of Tsinghua University has kindly agreed to serve as Secretary of TC210. He can be reached at wangrui_05@mail.tsinghua.edu.cn


The web site of TC210: https://www.issmge.org/committees/technical-committees/applications/embankment-dams

  1. Task forces for TC210


Members were asked for suggestions on establishing a number of task forces or working groups.


Task Force “Performance of dams during extreme events” (Action: Daniel Prandel)

Daniel Prandel (Nominated member, USA) proposed a task force entitled “Performance of dams during extreme events”.  As extreme events such as hurricanes are becoming more frequent and intense due to climate change, the task force will look into not only failure events, but also  responses, designs, and modifications that will enhance the performance of affected dams.


Miguel Pando (Nominated member, USA) and Shailesh Gandhi (Nominated member, India) expressed enthusiasm in helping with activities or task forces of TC210.


  1. Conferences


ISSMGE TC210 conference series (Action: Limin Zhang and entire TC)

Limin Zhang proposed to launch an ISSMGE TC210 conference series: International Conference on Geotechnics of Embankment Dams. The first conference is tentatively arranged in 2020 in Chengdu, China, which is close to a number of modern highrise rockfill dams. This will be a major task of TC210 in the coming two years. All members of TC210 will serve on the Technical Committee of the conference.


A local organising committee will be established shortly.


Short courses will also be organised during the conference.


International Symposium on Dam Break Case Records and Research

Zuyu Chen (Chair nominated member) suggested that in the wake of a number of recent dam breaches in Laos, Myanmar, China and other places, it would be interesting to organize an ‘International Symposium on Dam Break Case Records and Research’, dedicated to collecting case records, promoting related dam safety and emergency management activities.


This program can be taken as one of the mini-symposiums during the first TC210 conference.


TC210 session during 17th ECSMGE in Reykjavik, 1-6 Sept. 2019 (Action: Daniele Cazzuffi, Malcolm Eddleston and Sven Knutsson)

Daniele Cazzuffi (Nominated member, Italy) suggested it would be useful to concentrate our efforts in organizing some events during the next European conferences in 2019, before the organization of our own conference in Chengdu in 2020. The next 17th ECSMGE in Reykjavik (1-6 Sept. 2019) would be a good occasion to initiate such events. Daniele Cazzuffi offered to contribute with a lecture on the use of geosynthetics as barrier systems in the upstream faces of embankment dams.


Malcolm Eddleston (Chair nominated member) and Sven Knutsson (Nominated member, Sweden) supported the suggestion to hold a session and/or Committee meeting at 17 ECSMGE in Reykjavik (1-6 Sept. 2019).


Pierre Delage (TOC Chair, ISSMGE) contacted with Mario Manassero (Vice President for Europe, ISSMGE) regarding the possibility of a special session (workshop) on dams organised by TC 210 during the forthcoming Reykjavik European Conference.




TC210 session during 17th ARCSMGE, 6-10 Oct. 2019 (Action: ??)

Zuyu Chen (Chair nominated member) suggested that a TC210 session be held during the 17th African Regional Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering in Cape Town, South Africa, 6-10 Oct. 2019.  An ISSMGE Board meeting will be held during this conference.


It is noticed that Africa is not represented in TC210. Limin Zhang will contact ISSMGE and request for members from Africa.


  1. Collaboration with other TCs within ISSMGE and ICOLD


Didiek Djarwadi (Nominated member, Indonesia) encouraged TC 210 to closely collaborate with ICOLD, especially with TC E of Embankment Dams.


Malcolm Eddleston followed up the suggestion to link up with ICOLD, suggesting each TC 210 committee member pair up with their respective colleagues on their local ICOLD committee and set up reporting lines between the two committees to share ideas and initiatives. A recent publication of the ICOLD Bulletin on Internal Erosion in Embankment Dams is a great example of the success of collaboration between ICOLD and ISSMGE. Malcolm Eddleston also suggested this to the ICOLD Embankment Dam Committee, receiving positive response.


Sven Knutsson supports the suggestion to link the work done within ICOLD with the work done in TC 210. Within ICOLD there is also a TC for Tailings Dams, working with questions related to those being in focus for TC210.  A close link to the Tailings dams TC would be beneficial as many of the latest dam failures in the world have been related to tailings dams.


Angelo Amorosi (Nominated member, Italy) expressed the belief that the current renewed TC210 should not just be a faded copy of an ICOLD sub-committee, with whom we should all keep in touch and cooperate, but rather a source of new ideas, methodologies and solutions based on modern approaches to geotechnical engineering. All of this would naturally benefit from renewed “internal” interactions with other ISSMGE technical committees, for example with TC201 (Dykes and Levees), TC203 (Seismic), and TC106 (Unsaturated soils). This would imply to tackle the more fundamental question about the current state of the art on the subject “dams”, a “mature” subject which could be revitalised by some insightful contributions coming from more up to date research and technical topics.


Eduardo Capdevila  (Nominated member, Argentina) believes it an excellent idea to work with others TC of the ISSMGE and of the ICOLD. Unfortunately, he will not be able to continue in the TC210 and has already informed this to the SAIG (Sociedad Argentina de Ingeniería Geotécnica).


Limin Zhang supplemented the discussions by pointing out that Dr. Tournier, Jean-Pierre, Chair of ICOLD TC on Embankment Dams, and a few ICOLD senior officers such as Dr. Karre Hoeg, are now members of TC210, which will promote closer collaborations between ISSMGE and ICOLD on dam related issues.  TC210 should also be an original source of innovation and work closely with ISSMGE technical committees.



  1. Other business


Jianhong Zhang (Secretary General of Chinese institution of soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering, CISMGE) extended the dedication of the CISMGE to work closely with TC210.


Jinsheng Jia (Secretary General of Chinese National Committee on Large Dams, former president ICOLD) expressed full support to TC210 activities.

Posted: 07/09/2018 12:24