Geotechnical Engineering and Hydraulics | Abertay University

Geotechnical Engineering and Hydraulics


Basic concepts of hydraulics and their application to water supply and pollution control and understanding of geotechnics.


The aim of this Module is to apply principles of hydraulics relevant to water engineering problems. To provide an introduction to environmental engineering and pollution control. To solve geotechnical engineering problems.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this module the student should be able to:

1.  Analyse flow through pipelines and design pipeline systems.

2.  Demonstrate a basic understanding of hydraulic machines.

3.  Discuss the technical aspects of sustainable wastewater management.

4.  Use standard procedures to design simple foul and storm runoff drainage networks.

5.  Analyse geotechnical shear strength test data to obtain the relevant design parameters.

6.  Apply knowledge of the engineering properties of soils and rocks to facilitate the design of the geotechnical aspects of engineering structures.

Indicative Content

1 Steady flow through pipes:

General approach. Pipe flow and Reynolds number. Frictional effects in pipe flow and Darcy head loss equation. Analysis of pipe systems - use design aids: flow charts, tables, computer package

2 Hydraulic machines:

Types of hydraulic machines - positive displacement and rotodynamic machines. Selection and installation of pumps, using pump and system performance curves, cavitation and associated issues.

3 Drainage systems:

Combined and separate sewer systems. Urban storm water pollution control. CSOs. Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems. Estimation of foul and storm flows. Design of simple systems for foul and surface water.

4 Rock Mechanics:

The concept of effective stress.

5 Soil Shear Strength:

The theory of soil shear strength, Mohr Coulomb failure criterion. Determine shear strength parameters for design purposes from shear box, undrained triaxial and vane tests.

6 Soil Lateral Pressure:

At-rest, active and passive states of lateral stress; effect of groundwater; forces exerted on gravity walls; stability with respect to sliding and overturning. Comprehend the value of efficient design.

7 Seepage:

Flow net construction, seepage into excavations, seepage forces and piping.

8 Laboratory Work:

Determine the shear strength of sand and saturated clay. Safe working practices in a laboratory situation.

Statement on Teaching, Learning and Assessment

Interactive lectures will be used for imparting theories and concepts and for active enquiry. Tutorials will be used to develop skills of analysis, design, and problem solving. Students will have the opportunity to work in teams during tutorial classes. Laboratory and modelling classes will be used to facilitate practical and participative learning. Students will also be expected to undertake some guided study outside the contact hours. Examinations and coursework will be used to test learning and understanding, and intellectual and transferable skills.

Teaching and Learning Work Loads

Total 200
Lecture 22
Tutorial/Seminar 16
Supervised Practical Activity 8
Unsupervised Practical Activity 0
Assessment 55
Independent 99

Guidance notes

Credit Value – The total value of SCQF credits for the module. 20 credits are the equivalent of 10 ECTS credits. A full-time student should normally register for 60 SCQF credits per semester.


We make every effort to ensure that the information on our website is accurate but it is possible that some changes may occur prior to the academic year of entry. The modules listed in this catalogue are offered subject to availability during academic year 2018/19 , and may be subject to change for future years.