Research database

GEOCHARME - GEOphysical CHARacterization and Monitoring of Earthen dams and levees

24 months (2025)
Principal investigator(s):
Project type:
Nationally funded research - PRIN
Funding body:
Project identification number:
PoliTo role:


The characterization and monitoring of levees and earthen dams require cost-effective and reliable methods able to identify the state of life of the embankment and foundation soil. The project is aimed at developing: • integrated geophysical methods, with special focus on surface/guided wave and resistivity data, for the characterization of levees; • novel processing tools for monitoring the levee conditions based on ambient noise measurements; • novel monitoring strategies based on the identification of failure precursors through seismic noise and electrical self-potentials generated by piping. The project is carried out by two research units that comprehend all the required competences and relies on the facilities and the technical staff of four labs (Polito-DIATI Applied Geophysics Lab, Polito Photonext Center, Polito-DIATI CC-Moving Lab, Unito- Earth Science Dept Geophysical and Geological-Technical Characterization Lab). The equipment, including proprietary developed prototypes, the computational facilities and the existing proprietary routines provide a solid basis for the project development. The project will generate open source codes for seismic data processing and inversion and seismic and resistivity data joint inversion customized for levee characterization. Moreover, specific correlations between geophysical data and relevant geotechnical parameters (e.g. hydraulic conductivity) will be developed and calibrated for levee characterization. Numerical modeling will be used to test the methods. Field data will be acquired along the Po river levees as validation of the implemented methods and tools. Numerical and field data, as scientific publications and codes will be made openly available to the research community. Dissemination of the results will be carefully planned also using social media to ensure adequate visibility to the project. Endorsement from scientific international partners, national and international companies and stake holders is witnessed by letters of interest. 11.



ERC sectors

PE8_3 - Civil engineering, architecture, maritime/hydraulic engineering, geotechnics, waste treatment

Sustainable Development Goals

Obiettivo 6. Garantire a tutti la disponibilità e la gestione sostenibile dell’acqua e delle strutture igienico-sanitarie


Total cost: € 277,577.00
Total contribution: € 196,821.00
PoliTo total cost: € 176,260.00
PoliTo contribution: € 125,141.00