safety assessment of concrete gravity dams

Most of the dams in India were built in the sixties, when
only simple methods could be used to properly design
them. Forty years later, despite the progress made in
our capability to conduct sophisticated finite element
studies, current analyses procedures for safety assessment
remain essentially the same as those used earlier for
design. The main objective of this article is to highlight
the work done in the area of fracture mechanics
for safety assessment of gravity dams. It is shown that the
conventional strength of materials-based design leads
to large factors of safety when compared to the more
recent and rational concepts of fracture mechanics.