Bed Load Erosion Patterns and Their Effect on the Structural Strength of Rigid Pipes Made of Homogeneous Materials

Hillel Rubin*, 1, Dmitry Tokarev1, Eran Rubin2, Holger Schuttrumpf3
1 Faculty of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Technion– Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa 32000, Israel
2 Department of Technology Management, Holon Institute of Technology (HIT), 42 Golomb Street, Holon 5883749, Israel
3 Institute of Hydraulic Engineering and Water Resources Management, RWTH Aachen University, Mies-van-der Rohe

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© 2013 Rubin et al;

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Faculty of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa 32000, Israel; Tel: +(972)4-829-2306; Fax: +(972)4-822-8898; E-mail:


This manuscript concerns the decrease of the structural strength of rigid pipes made of homogeneous materials due to bed load erosion, caused by different concentrations of hard solid particles transported by the sanitary sewage, or surface runoff. Such a phenomenon has been observed in combined sanitary systems (CSS), as well as in force mains delivering domestic sewage due to the penetration of hard solid particles into the sanitary sewerage system. Field observations have indicated that the low concentrations of solid particles transported with the sewage lead to the formation of a groove at the pipe invert. Experiments carried out in this study have shown that the width of the groove mainly depends on the concentration of the solid particles. Numerical simulations have indicated that bed load erosion resulting from very low concentrations of solid small particles may be more detrimental to the structural strength of the pipe than higher concentration of such particles.

Keywords: Bed load erosion, concrete pipe failure, bed load erosion pattern, pipe collapse, pipe rupture, pipe structural strength.