Practical methods of estimating tilting failure of caisson breakwaters using a Monte-Carlo simulation

Hiroshi Takagi, Miguel Esteban

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


The authors propose a new method to estimate the tilting failure of caisson breakwaters, using a Monte-Carlo simulation that can quantitatively and stochastically estimate failure probability. An index, referred to as "Expected Frequency Exceeding of a Critical Load (EFEC)" that expresses the potential tilting failure probability of caisson breakwaters is proposed and adopted in this model. Application of the model to 40 breakwaters in Japan reveals that the threshold value of EFEC that specifies whether a caisson breakwater is safe or unsafe could lie in the range from 0.02 to 0.04. The authors also found that unstable caisson geometry, showing a large value in the aspect ratio of the caisson, can provide additional indication of when tilting failure is likely to occur. It is expected that the present method can provide a practical way for engineers to judge the possibility of tilting failure in caisson breakwaters.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1350011
JournalCoastal Engineering Journal
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Sept
Externally publishedYes


  • Caisson breakwater
  • Monte-Carlo simulation
  • expected sliding distance
  • reliability design method
  • tilting failure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Modelling and Simulation
  • Ocean Engineering


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