Masters Theses


"The Taum Sauk Upper Reservoir was built in the early 1960's as a water storage reservoir for hydro-electric energy production. The reservoir was created by blasting the top off of Proffit Mountain located in Reynolds County Missouri near the town of Lesterville. The debris generated by the blasting was then used to construct a kidney shaped rock and earthen fill reservoir atop the mountain. The Upper Reservoir was approximately 95 feet in depth and covered a surface area of 55 acres. The reservoir had the capacity to hold nearly 1.5 billion gallons of water and, on the morning of December 14th, 2005, underwent a catastrophic failure releasing most of its stored water down the northwest side of Proffit Mountain. An approximate 700-foot wide breach occurred along the northwest radius of the rock-fill dike shortly after 5:00A.M. that morning.

This thesis analyzes and evaluates different failure mechanisms of the reservoir by defining three distinct failure hypotheses. Each hypothesis is analyzed, evaluated, and discussed in terms of its relevance to the failure events and probability of occurrence by using theories, analytical solutions, and computer based iterative analytical solutions. Conclusions are then made based on the analyses discussion and each mechanism is categorized in terms of its individual likelihood of contribution to the Taum Sauk Upper Reservoir failure"--Abstract, page iii.


Luna, Ronaldo

Committee Member(s)

Ge, Yu-Ning (Louis)
Hoffman, David J.
Mendoza, Cesar


Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering

Degree Name

M.S. in Civil Engineering


University of Missouri--Rolla

Publication Date

Summer 2006


x, 130 pages

Note about bibliography

Includes bibliographical references (pages 127-129).

Geographic Coverage

Taum Sauk Upper Reservoir


© 2006 Quentin Paul Gehring, All rights reserved.

Document Type

Thesis - Restricted Access

File Type




Subject Headings

Dam failures -- Missouri
Earth dams

Thesis Number

T 9036

Print OCLC #


Electronic OCLC #


Link to Catalog Record

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