Discrete Element Method for Slope Stability Analysis

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Addis Ababa University


A static DEM has been presented to solve slope stability analyses. The method consists of discretizing the soil mass into blocks which are joined by Winkler springs. From relation of forces with stiffness and displacement, sets of simultaneous equations are solved to find displacements and stresses. The local stresses are used to calculate factor of safety while the displacement fields are used for predicting the critical failure surface. Example problems have been solved using DEM and the results have shown the potential of the method for slope stability analysis. Comparisons of the present model between limit equilibrium methods, FEM and with DEM models by other authors are made .The results suggest that DEM methods can be used both to predict the critical slip surface and give a factor of safety and that these outputs closely agree with the conventional limit equilibrium methods and the more rigorous FEMs.



Discrete ;Element ; Method