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BIZERTE-ZARZOUNA FISHING HARBOUR
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I TUNISIA

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ACCROPODECR) BLOCK DROPPING TESTS
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I July 1984

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2. TEST INSTALLATION
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I 2.1 CRANE

The erane used for these tests was a LIMA 2400. This erawler-type
I crane, with a eapaeity of about 800 t.m, equipped with a 120 ft
lattiee-work jib, had been used to plaee all the ACCROPODE(R) bloeks
on the breakwater, and was also subsequently to be used to plaee the

I quay bloeks.

Dropping of the ACCROPODE(R) bloeks was obtained by disengaging the


drum and releasing the brakes. The first tests, earried out with
I six-line reeving, were affeeted by substantial friction, both through
the reeving pulleys and on the erane drum. Moreover, the reeving
pulleys had a tendeney to twist, so that the maximum dropping speed

I was quiekly attained. The reeving was therefore redueed to two lines
for the rest of the tests.

The drops obtained with this arrangement proved to be quite satis-


I faetory, and the erane does not seem to have suffered, whether from
the sudden rapid rotation 'of the drum or from the jerks in the jib
eaused at the moment of impact of the bloeks.
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I 2.2 POINT OF IMPACT

The tests were performed on the breakwater eore.


I The part of the strueture on whieh the tests took plaee had been
subjeeted to very heavy lorry traffie and erane movements, and was

I weIl eonsolidated (this impression was eonfirmed by measurements


of settiement).

The dropping tests were performed in two stages, the bloek first of
I all being dropped on the quarry run (0-1000 kg) eonstituting the
eore of the breakwater, then on a parallelepiped concrete bloek of
dimensions 2.25 x 2.25 x 1.40 m.
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I 2.3 SLINGING

The slings used were the same as for plaeing of the bloeks (30 mm
I diameter and coupled without eyes).

The bloeks were lifted by the upper anvil, the hook being in one of

I two axes relative to the bloek:

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I _8_

I Tests were carried out at Sète -FRANCE- in September 1983 with


8 m3 Tetrapod b10cks (2). Four b10cks were subjected to the tests.

I Breakage in each case occurred af ter three or four drops through a


height of a few tens of centime tres on a non-deformab1e concrete
surface. It is to be noted that the qua1ity of the concrete, checked
on core samples, was proved to be perfect1y satisfactory for these
I bl.ocks ,

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5.3 DOLOS BL OCKS

I Tests were carried out at Sines (3) with 42 tf do10s b10cks.

Breakage occurred with dropping heights of between 0.05 and 0.25 m


I depending on the nature of impact. Furthermore, it
that the tests carried out by Burchardt (4) enab1e
is to be noted
estimation of
the critica1 dropping height (causing breakage) at between 0.09 and

I 0.16 m for dolosses of 1.5 and 5.4 tf.

It is a1so important to note that static tests have been carried out
in the USA with fibre-reinforced concrete (5). By contrast with
I conventiona1 steel reinforced b10cks, the appearance of fissures is
significant1y de1ayed, and it wou1d seem that the use of fibres,
whether or not of the meta1 type, brings significant improvements
I as regards both abrasion and resistance to fatigue. It neverthe1ess
appears, despite these improvements, that the do10s presents an
excessive fragi1ity due to its shape, and that the risk of breakage

I on the facing remains (6).

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6. RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS

I Tests of breakage of 4 m3 ACCROPODE(R) b10cks were carried out on


the work site in Sète harbour in 1980. These tests, performed with
aloader, showed the strength of the b10ck, but the testing method
I app1ied did not enablé any quantitative information to be derived.

On the other hand, the tests carried out at Bizerte c1early

I demonstrate the fo110wing characteristics:

The strength of the ACCROPODE(R) b10ck is significant1y greater

I than that of the other b10cks that are designed to interlink


or hook on to each other (Tetrapod, Dolos, Stabit, Dinosaur •••).
This is exp1ained by the massiveness of the protuberances and
the progressiveness of their connection to the central core.
I The breakage occurs progressive1y. Weight 10sses are generally
10w by comparison with the unit weight of the b10ck, in marked

I contrast to what generally hap pens to other types of b10ck.


Moreover, the breakage of one protuberance, further increases
the strength of the b10ck.

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I in one case the impact was effected on the central protuberance


opposite the hook,

I in the other case the impact was effected on one of the


protuberances forming the lower anvil.

I 2.4 BLOCKS USED

I The tests were carried out with two blocks of 6.3 m3 nominal volume,
complying with the technical specifications for manufacture.

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3. TEST PROCEDURE
I When it had been noted that the blocks were subjected to no damage
when dropped on the core of the breakwater, regardless of the

I dropping height, testing was continued by dropping the block on the


parallelepiped concrete block described above.

The blocks were dropped from increasing heights, starting again with
I the lowest height each time partial breakage of the block occurred.
A graph of dropping time as a function of height was established
(see figure 1), by interpolation from a series of observations,

I taking into account the error in use of stopwatch. Assuming the


dropping heights to be exact, the speeds at the moment of impact
were assessed graphically, and it was thus possible to deduce the

I equivalent free dropping heights.

_ Figure 1

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Dropping time (s)
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DROPPING FUNCTION
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TWO-LINE REEVING
V
I . 2.0
~t, ~

-- -
IEGtimaLd heJght

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1.8 --
-
~
:7
_- ~--;
~. v>"e..J~ ...
~

~_ /-v /
1.6

""""-/'V_' ....
I 1.-4

./ ~
/.~
// '
~///

~.,..
.... 1.--'

1.2
i{?'.....
I 1.0
7/
á ~<, Equiva ent f ee drop

I 0.8
~.., ~
/,- /'"
0.6

V'
I 0.4

0.2
/
I 0.0
1/
o 2 4 8 9 10 11 12 14
nrnppinr,

18
height (r

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I 4. OBSERVAT IONS

I The observations are presented in tabular form hereunder:

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FIRST 6.3 M3 BLOCK - SIX-LlNE REEVING
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Estimated Weight Accumu1ated
Point of
I impact
height
(m)
10ss
(%)
10ss
(%)
Observa tions

I 2
The b10ck suffered no damage, but it
was noted that the six-1ine reeving
Core had the effect of significant1y
I of break-
water
4

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slowing down the drop. The dropping
speed soon reached its peak. The
kinetic energy of the b10ck is

I absorbed by deformation of the


quarry run.

I 0,50
1,00
The dropping height
is progressive1y
2,30 increased. Breakage

I 8,00
10,00 5 % 5 %
of the central pro-
tuberance occurs
wi th H = lOm but
the dropping time
I Concrete
is about 4 s.

b10ck
I 8,00 5 %
The b10ck is slung
in the other direc-
tion. Breakage of
the protuberance
I 12,00 5 % 10 % sustaining the
impact occurs at a
dropping height
I equivalent to that
of the preceding
test. The breakage

I area is identica1.

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I 5. THE ACCROPODE(R) COMPARED TO THE af HER MAIN ARTIFICIAL BLOCKS

The test procedure used calls for two reservations:


I the small number of ACCROPODE(R) blocks subjected to these
tests does not allow precise quantitative information to be

I determined,

the procedure does not cover the risk of breakage due to


fatigue, although this is perhaps the most frequent cause of
I breakage of blocks, subjected to rocking movements on the
facing.

I However, it is possible to make a qualitative comparison of the


approximate results obtained by the present tests with those of
tests performed with other types of artificial block.

I
I 5.1 CUBIC BLOCKS

Tests were peformed at Sines with cubic blocks of different size (1).

I The following table sets out an extract of the results obtained,


with blocks of 9 tf and 27 tf. Refer to document (1) for precise
indication of procedure used.

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9 tf 27 tf
I V (mis) 5 3 2,4 4,4 3,6 2,8 2,0

I n
c
2 2 11 1 2 2 2

nf 4 6 14 2 3 5 6

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n: number of impacts before fissures appear
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nf: number of shocks before breakage.

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I 5.2 TETRAPOD BLOCKS

Numerous dropping tests have been performed during the 30 years of


use of the Tetrapod technique.
I The different test installations adopted have the effect of diver-
sifying the results.
I The dropping heights generally adopted in order to obtain breakage
are less than one metre.

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I _8_

I Tests were carried out at Sète -FRANCE- in September 1983 with


8 m3 Tetrapod b10cks (2). Four b10cks were subjected to the tests.

I Breakage in each case occurred af ter three or four drops through a


height of a few tens of centime tres on a non-deformab1e concrete
surface. It is to be noted that the qua1ity of the concrete, checked
on core samples, was proved to be perfect1y satisfactory for these
I bl.ocks ,

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5.3 DOLOS BL OCKS

I Tests were carried out at Sines (3) with 42 tf do10s b10cks.

Breakage occurred with dropping heights of between 0.05 and 0.25 m


I depending on the nature of impact. Furthermore, it
that the tests carried out by Burchardt (4) enab1e
is to be noted
estimation of
the critica1 dropping height (causing breakage) at between 0.09 and

I 0.16 m for dolosses of 1.5 and 5.4 tf.

It is a1so important to note that static tests have been carried out
in the USA with fibre-reinforced concrete (5). By contrast with
I conventiona1 steel reinforced b10cks, the appearance of fissures is
significant1y de1ayed, and it wou1d seem that the use of fibres,
whether or not of the meta1 type, brings significant improvements
I as regards both abrasion and resistance to fatigue. It neverthe1ess
appears, despite these improvements, that the do10s presents an
excessive fragi1ity due to its shape, and that the risk of breakage

I on the facing remains (6).

I
6. RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS

I Tests of breakage of 4 m3 ACCROPODE(R) b10cks were carried out on


the work site in Sète harbour in 1980. These tests, performed with
aloader, showed the strength of the b10ck, but the testing method
I app1ied did not enablé any quantitative information to be derived.

On the other hand, the tests carried out at Bizerte c1early

I demonstrate the fo110wing characteristics:

The strength of the ACCROPODE(R) b10ck is significant1y greater

I than that of the other b10cks that are designed to interlink


or hook on to each other (Tetrapod, Dolos, Stabit, Dinosaur •••).
This is exp1ained by the massiveness of the protuberances and
the progressiveness of their connection to the central core.
I The breakage occurs progressive1y. Weight 10sses are generally
10w by comparison with the unit weight of the b10ck, in marked

I contrast to what generally hap pens to other types of b10ck.


Moreover, the breakage of one protuberance, further increases
the strength of the b10ck.

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I Thus it appears that the ACCROPODE(R) bloek differs signifieantly


from the other artifieial bloeks used for proteetive armours of
I maritime struetures:

the massive shape of the bloek makes it intrinsieally strong;

I the ~ eoeffieient used for preliminary sizing of the bloeks


gives unit weight values that are praetieally equivalent to
those of grooved eubie bloeks, thus giving a high degree of
I weight-indueed stability;

the plaeing of the bloeks in a single layer limits the roeking

I movements, henee also the risk of breakage due to repeated


shocks;

the breakage of an ACCROPODE(R) bloek on the faeing, assuming


I that sueh breakage were to oeeur despite the substantial safety
margin already demonstrated, would in no way threaten stability
of the faeing, sinee it would not notably deerease the unit
I weight of the bloek.

It mayalso be noted that the seale model tests undertaken by

I SOGREAH or in numerous other laboratories have shown that even if a


gap is deliberately ereated in the armour (by removing one, two or
even three bloeks), this tends to close up naturally by settlement
of the armour. In the tests earried out to date, there have been
I no cases where the underlying rocks (assumed to be eorreetly sized)
are sueked out through the armour and washed away.

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I The overall stability of an armour formed with artifieial bloeks
depends on two factors:

I 1) Stability of the bloeks under wave attaek

This stability may be assessed with a fairly high degree of


aeeuraey by laboratory tests. The tests using the ACCROPODE(R)
I teehnique, whether general tests or tests for speeifie projects.,
have been suffieiently numerous for the eapaeities of the bloek
in this respect to be eorreetly assessed.
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2) Perennity of the actua1 b10cks

I The fragi1ity of the b10cks on the sca1e model is by no means


representative of that of the rea1-size blocks. The tests
performed to date with a view to tmproving this representative-
I ness have not yet proved ful1y satisfactory.

At present, therefore, on1y fu11-sca1e or large-sca1e tests


I wou1d seem to be capab1e of giving satisfaction.

The tests carried out at Sète and at Bizerte enab1e the

I ACCROPODE(R) b10ck to be situated re1ative to the other types


of artificial b10ck.

I In conc1usion, the ACCROPODE(R) block seems to be an effective


compromise between:

I the solutions using grooved cubic b10cks, which present


satisfactory safety provided that they are correct1y sized,
but which are re1ative1y disadvantageous from the point of
view of cost, especia11y for protection of roundheads,
I and the solutions using artificial blocks of sophisticated
shape, in respect of which the criterion of fragility has
I hard1y been taken into account if at all, and the behaviour
of which in full sca1e app1ications wou1d seem to differ
significant1y from the behaviour in sca1e model tests.

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I REFEREN::ES

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(1) On the mechanical strength of cubic armour blocks

I Manuel A.G. SILVA


Coastal structures 83.

I (2) Tetrapod dropping tests at the port of Sète


G. MORE and M. DAYRE
SOGREAH-IRIGM report, May 1984 (in French).
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(3) Accident damage and repairs to Sines breakwater, Portugal

I Stability of rubble mound breakwaters


P. COUPRIE
Revue Travaux, April 1982 (in French).

I (4) A design method for impact loaded slender armour units


H.F. BURCHARDT
I Bulletin No 18
Aalborg University Central Laboratory for Hydraulics, Hawebygning.

I (5) Use of fibre reinforeed concrete in hydraulic structures in marine


environments
Study presented at RILEM Symposium, 1975 (in French).
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(6) Fibre reinforeed concrete

I Kneeland A. GODFREY Jr.


Civil Engineering, November 1982.

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I AC KNOWLEDGEMENTS

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The author is most grateful to the contracting group CAMPENON BERNARD CETRA/

I ALl MHENl, as well as to the representatives of the Administration, for their


kind collaboration. Particular thanks are due to Mr Grein (Campenon Bernard
Cetra), Mr Arfaoui (Administration) and Mr Hamani (Studi).

I Total commitment at all levels enabled successful implementation of the tests


under optimum conditions, as regards both the time required and the testing
methods used.
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BIZERTE
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I PHOTOGRAPHS OF
THE DROPPING TESTS

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I Crane used for the
tests.

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I Test installation:
the sling is the
same as that used

I for placing the


blocks.

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The dropping heights
I are increased pro-
gressively.

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I Characteristic
breakage surface.

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Strength increases as

I the volume of the


protuberances decreases.

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Af ter a complete

I series of drops, the


bloek has retained
70 7. of its original
weight.

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