Deep Foundations and Soil Mechanics Expert Available to Comment on Oroville Dam Spillway

Coffman studied Mosul Dam from 2003 to 2007.

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Civil engineering professor Richard Coffman is available to comment on foundation and soil issues related to the Oroville Dam spillway.

A geotechnical engineer, Coffman is an expert in deep foundations, soil properties and mechanics, and remote sensing for geotechnical engineering applications. He teaches a class on soil dynamics related to dam construction.

From 2003 to 2007, Coffman studied Mosul Dam on the Tigris River in Iraq. He used satellite-based radar images to investigate the stability of the dam and determined that the structure is subsiding at a rate of 8 millimeters per year.

Lake Oroville is roughly 75 miles north of Sacramento and 25 miles southeast of Chico, Calif. The dam is the tallest in the United States. Thousands of people have evacuated areas downriver from the lake after engineers noticed a crevice in the spillway.


CONTACTS: Richard Coffman, associate professor, civil engineering College of Engineering479-575-8767, [email protected]

Matt McGowan, science and research communications officerUniversity Relations479-575-4246, [email protected]