Your supervisor, Dr. A. Nick, has been contacted by a commercial entity that is interested in constructing a new and exclusive: Civil Engineering Assignment, UOB, UK

Dec 11, 2023

University

Subject Civil Engineering

Your supervisor, Dr. A. Nick, has been contacted by a commercial entity that is interested in constructing a new and exclusive leisure resort in the French Alps. The developer has identified a number of potential sites for their resort but is concerned about the potential for avalanches in the region.

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In order to determine the most suitable location for the planned resort the developer has requested that your supervisor’s team conduct modeling to enable the company to better predict the run-out distance for avalanches in each of the sites they are investigating. Dr. A. Nick has suggested you should investigate this problem using a model experiment.

A schematic of the apparatus available to conduct the model experiment is shown in figure . In summary, the apparatus consists of a ramp in which a straight chute is connected seamlessly to a horizontal sheet by a smooth curve. At the start of a test, a quantity of granular material is held behind a trapdoor at the top of the chute.

To initiate a test the trapdoor rotates about a hinge thereby releasing the granular material to travel down the ramp. The distance that the granular material travels beyond the bottom of the ramp is known as the run-out distance x, as shown in figure . The horizontal sheet at the base of the ramp is marked with a graduated scale to facilitate the measurement of x.

The apparatus is designed in such a way that its geometry can be extensively varied. In particular, it is possible to vary the length of the chute L (0.1 ≤ L 2 m), the width of the chute W (0.05 ≤ W 0.5 m), and the angle θ (10 ≤ θ 60) at which the chute is inclined. The trapdoor is of a fixed width Wtrap = 0.05 m and freely rotates about the hinge when a latch fixing the trapdoor in position is removed. The radius R of the curved section of the ramp cannot be varied.

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