Marine, Dredging & Port Engineering

Water related projects are the core business of IMDC. Consequently hydraulic design is required in many projects. Another important part of these water related projects is the geotechnical aspect, in particular for hydraulic designs. 

The following services, sorted according to their Expertise Domain, are highlighted:

 1) Hydraulic design 
    • Design of coastal structures 
    • Design of bed protections and (propeller) scour assessments 
    • Design of bank protection and revetments 
    • Set-up and follow-up of hydraulic physical model tests 

2) Geotechnics 

    • Set-up, follow-up and interpretation of (offshore and onshore) geotechnical investigations 
    • Geotechnical analysis 
    • Tailor-made solutions based on extensive (geotechnical) data analysis 
    • Deterministic to fully probabilistic geotechnical analysis 

3) Engineers on Site 

    • Client Representative services
    • Site supervision

These services are provided in several Key Markets, such as:

A) Ports 

    • Breakwaters LNG terminals 
    • Assessment of the overtopping risk in port and coastal areas 
    • Dynamic mooring analysis and ship interaction 
    • Fast-time navigation simulations and follow-up of real-time simulations 
    • Port master planning 
B) Infrastructures 
    • Offshore windfarms
    • Immersed tunnels 
    • Intake and outlet structures 
    • Cables & Pipelines 
    • Anchoring and mooring of floating structure (solar and wind) 
C) Dredging 
    • Dredging consultancy 
    • Dredging equipment 
    • Land reclamation assessment 
    • Disposal of dredged material and environmental impact studies

More information on some of these services can be found below:

Design of coastal structures 

Coastal and marine structures are designed to provide sheltered water for harbours and marinas, protect vital land-based infrastructure and provide protection from flooding and erosion. The design of these different kind of structures (breakwaters, seawalls, groins, quays, etc.) represents the main core of our competencies. IMDC has extensive international experiences in designing coastal and marine structures. Our design is performed applying in-house tools, advanced numerical software and also most recent developments. IMDC also offers supervision and design verification during construction.

Design of bed protection and scour assessment

The local scour around coastal and marine structures, are of relevant interest in coastal and hydraulic engineering. IMDC has performed numerous studies on the design of bed protection and scour assessment with main focus on scour around marine structures exposed to waves and currents, (offshore wind) foundations and cable protection. IMDC has also performed detailed design of bank and bottom protection for inland waterways and protection from propeller induced scour caused by ships.

Physical model of wave-structure interaction

The use of physical modelling investigations related to the study of wave-structure interaction represents an irreplaceable design tool for coastal engineers. Based on the experience and expertise in physical modelling, IMDC can assist its Client during all the phases of a laboratory test campaign, from the test set-up, to the execution, analysis and interpretation of the collected data.

Follow-up of geotechnical site investigations

Based on the available experience and expertise in onshore and offshore geotechnical site investigations, IMDC can assist its Client from the first phase of a geotechnical site investigation by writing the technical specifications to the last phase by delivering an interpretative report of the collected data. Also the supervision of onshore laboratory testing can be performed, for which all input parameters for the setup of the geotechnical laboratory tests are verified. IMDC can also assist the Client by interpreting the in-situ data (CPT, P-S logging, etc.) and the results of the (onshore) laboratory tests.

Slope stability analysis

The stability of slopes is of utmost importance in the design of water related works. IMDC has performed numerous slope stability analysis for dredging and trenching projects, for dikes and breakwaters and for excavation works for flood controlled areas. Consequently a lot of experience and expertise have gained in slope stability analysis by using the SLOPE/W (GeoStudio) and Plaxis software.

Liquefaction calculations

Liquefaction refers to the state of a soil that loses its strength and stiffness and acts as a fluid due to an applied stress. This state can occur due to cyclic loading (e.g. earthquakes, wave action, etc.). The liquefaction susceptibility analysis is performed for the installation of offshore pipeline. Also flotation of the pipeline is investigated.


Consolidation and settlement calculations

Consolidation and settlements of the subsoil are very important in the design of structures like breakwaters and dikes. As consolidation can be a long term process, some experiences have gained in designing the grid of prefabricated vertical drains, which accelerates the occurrence of the consolidation and settlements. The calculations are performed by in-house tools and by Plaxis. 

Full probabilistic (dike) failure calculations

Nowadays general practice for geotechnical & hydraulic calculations mostly use deterministic or semi-probabilistic methods. However, due to academic research and augmented computational power, full probabilistic failure calculations are rising. IMDC conducted yet several full probabilistic failure calculations on dikes with an, in-house developed, adaptive tool. Thanks to the Digital Water Solutions team in IMDC, a state of the art methodology is followed to investigate the effect of extreme storm events with return periods up till 1 million years, taking climate change into account.