Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award

2012

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

M.S. in Engineering Science

Department

Geology and Geological Engineering

First Advisor

Greg Easson

Second Advisor

Adnan Aydin

Third Advisor

Craig J. Hickey

Relational Format

dissertation/thesis

Abstract

Shallow slough slides have occurred along the river \side slope of Mississippi River Levees for over sixty years. Shallow slough slides also occur along smaller levees that protect tributaries of the Mississippi River. This investigation takes place along a section of the Coldwater River Levee, a tributary levee of the Mississippi River. Field observation, soil samples, and geophysical data were collected at two field sites located on the border of Tate and Tunica County, MS. The first site consists of a developed shallow slough slide that had occurred that has not yet been repaired and the second site is a potential slide area. Electromagnetic induction and electrical resistivity tomography were the geophysical methods used to define subsurface conditions that make a levee vulnerable to failure. These electrical methods are sensitive to the electrical conductivity of the soil and therefore depend upon: soil moisture, clay content, pore size distribution as well as larger scale structures at depth such as cracks and fissures. These same physical properties of the soil are also important to assessing the vulnerability of a levee to slough slides. Soil tests and field observations were also implemented in this investigation to describe and classify the soil composition of the levee material. The problem of slough slide occurrence can potentially be reduced if vulnerabilities are located with the help of geophysical techniques.

Concentration/Emphasis

Emphasis: Geology

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