Seepage and slope stability analyses are essential for the safe design of earthen dams. Designers usually perform steady state seepage analysis under full reservoir condition. However, the transient build up of pore water pressure has drawn little attention. In the present study, the effect of soil hydraulic properties on the transient pore water pressure build up in an earthen dam is analysed by simulating seepage analysis using a variably saturated numerical flow model. It has been found that the hydraulic conductivity, anisotropy and unsaturated soil retention parameters significantly affect the pore water pressure build up. However, their effect is found to be relatively insignificant at steady state.

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