Research Activities

Impact of Debris Flow on Buildings and Structures during Flooding


The objective of the proposed research project is to predict numerically transport of debris on rivers during flooding and debris impact as mechanical load on buildings and structures. The newly gained knowledge supports integrated, anticipatory and far-reaching water policies and strategies. For this purpose debris such as cars, trees and any other floating bodies are considered as individual i.e. discrete objects that interact with streaming water. Additionally, impact between debris objects and buildings such as bridges or houses is taken into account. Thus, the trajectory of each individual debris object is predicted with sufficient accuracy. The impact of debris on buildings and structures exerts a mechanical load on them, to which a building responses with deformation and stress or even fracture. In order to evaluate strain and stress, buildings and structures are treated by a finite element approach that allows evaluating strain/stress under impact of floating bodies. Floating objects of debris are assumed to be arbitrarily shaped, and therefore, are represented by a triangular surface mesh.


  • Partners: Technical University of Munich, Germany, Administration de la gestion de l’eau, Luxembourg, Bundesanstalt für Wasserbau, Trier, Germany
  • Contact: Prof.-Dr.-Ing. B. Peters


The research was funded through an FNR grant.