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10th February 2023
13:30 GMT

Crush Hall, L69 3GQ

Craig Goff & Tim Hirst:
Remote Sensing and Modelling Tools for Dam Safety Management: How Satelite Data Can Help Save Lives

This session will look at how dams fail, what indicators we look to monitor to give warning of failure, and some of the more traditional methods for monitoring these indicators. We will then consider what types of remote sensing data can be used augment this, touching on UAV’s aircraft and satellites. We will then focus on satellite datasets and use as an example, the DAMSAT system to illustrate how different datasets can be used for dam safety, and presentation of risk modelling information for dam operators.. Specifically, we will look at breaching and flood spreading for consequence analysis. Finally, we will explore the use of life safety modelling use within emergency planning.

    Craig GoffTechnical Director Dams and Reservoirs

Craig Goff is Technical Director and team leader with responsibility for both the dams and reservoirs area, together with the emerging technologies area of the business. He is a Fellow of the Institution of Civil Engineers, a Chartered Engineer, and a Chartered Manager, with more than 20 years’ post graduate experience. Craig is appointed by the UK Government to the Supervising Engineers Panel under the Reservoirs Act 1975, and holds the role of Supervising Engineer for more than 40 large raised reservoirs in the UK.

    Tim HirstDAMSAT Business Manager

Tim Hirst is responsible for the development of the DAMSAT business unit and originally studied Geography at Durham University He brings over 20 years’ experience in selling novel solutions to global audiences for long-term strategic challenges - including, for example, medical devices, pharmaceuticals and innovative technologies on behalf of SME start-ups and larger companies.

HR Wallingford is The specialist across all water-related challenges. As an independent civil engineering and environmental hydraulics organisation it's what we deliver, the world over. We create smart, resilient solutions for the natural and built environments to help the world understand the changing influence and impact of water.

  • Our specialist research and consultancy know-how solves the world’s most complex water-related challenges.
  • Ingenious solutions add value to our clients, create resilience, protect vulnerable communities and improve lives. We collaborate, build knowledge and innovate wherever water interacts with people, infrastructure and the environment.
  • A not-for-profit organisation, we reinvest our profits into strategic research. This allows us to tackle pressing problems; create next-generation tools and technology; and create state-of-the-art facilities. We lead the way in all that we do. Our research underpins our smart solutions – meaning our clients benefit from our fresh thinking before anyone else.
  • We value our independence. We don’t have shareholders. It means we give clear, evidence-based advice that our clients use to make intelligent decisions. Decisions that are genuinely right for them, their stakeholders and the communities they work in.

Our expertise helps people who live and work in, on or near water to build sustainable futures. Changes in our climate mean that water will become scarcer in many places, increasingly volatile in others, but no less vital. Our ability to build sustainable communities, industries and infrastructure will become more challenging. Understanding the movement, changing behaviour and influence of water in the natural and built environment is essential to our future well-being. Drawing on our unique capabilities in science, technology and engineering, we invest in knowledge to deliver insight and innovation.
We harness research, intelligent data and the power of our collective expertise to design smarter, more resilient solutions to address future challenges and opportunities in, on and near water.
We are the global leaders and independent experts in how to live and work sustainably with water.

DAMSAT harnesses satellite technology to remotely monitor water and tailings dams. The system helps to reduce the risk of failure of these structures and the consequent risk to population and damage to ecosystems downstream upon which many vulnerable communities rely for both their source of water and livelihoods. Dam safety is rightly a priority for owners, the public and for governments. Catastrophic failures can devastate communities downstream of a dam, causing loss of life and long-term damage to the ecosystems people rely on for their water and their livelihoods.
To reduce the risk of these structures failing, and to reduce the consequent risk to the population, dams need to be continuously monitored using routine inspections and safety reviews.
HR Wallingford’s DAMSAT system uses satellite technology to remotely monitor water and tailings dams and other tailings storage facilities. DAMSAT provides regular intelligence to support remote monitoring of water and tailings dams. DAMSAT is tailored to the specific needs of our end users.