Drainage Structures 101

Drainage structures are typically a system of pipes, drains, tunnels, and boreholes that have been designed to draw and collect groundwater from any type of structure. The difference between drainage of farmland and drainage of a structure is that drainage of structures has been designed to prevent any seepage of water into a structure, relieve the pressure of filtration on a structure, and to protect a foundation from erosion by means of seepage.

This type of design is frequently utilized with the general drainage designs found in many urban areas such as airports, industrial sites, office complexes, and so forth. Basically, it is the same type of drainage system that you would find for draining farmland. If there is a situation where the general reduction of groundwater cannot be sufficient, or if it is economically unattainable, then a system that uses the drainage structures type of design will be used.

The bed drainage of a structure is often achieved by using a so-called filtration bed. This type of process places the drainage directly on top of the water-bearing soil at the foundation of a structure. The system is hydraulically linked to the filtration bed by filtering material or pipes into a specific type of tubular drain which can be located on the outside of the foundation. It is important to make sure that the drain is closer than .7 m from the structure’s wall.

The advantage of incorporating the bed drainage of structure design is that it will thoroughly protect the building from both capillary moisture and seepage of groundwater. A structure that is built on soil with a low permeability will use this type of protection. It is also common to see it being used whenever there is a situation for draining heating systems or high-temperature shops.

A layer drainage concept will incorporate drainpipes along with filtration cushioning layers. The drainpipes will be laid on top of a water-resistant soil that is outside of the structure that requires protection. This type of specialty drainage is only utilized whenever the foundation of a structure needs to be protected from being located on top of water-resistant soil.

The circular drainage of a structure is used on the outer lines of a building area. This type of operation is required if the level of groundwater is apparent because of contours in the terrain. It can also be used to ensure protection against seepage for building units that are underground. The groundwater level will be lowered depending upon the depth of the tunnels, drainpipes, or filtering units that are relative to the existing subsoil water table.

It should be noted that there is a definite distinction between the combined types of drainage of structures. This is true when dealing with vertical and horizontal structures. Horizontal drainage design use tunnel drains, gutters, and ditches. Vertical drainage design, on the other hand, is a system of wells that are connected by a sewage conduit. At times, it may be necessary to incorporate both types of drainage systems.

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