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River Flow Simulation: Research and Developments

The translation of recent research work concerning shear layers into practical river simulation models is explained. The equations which govern the lateral distribution of streamwise depth-averaged velocity are formulated and solved. The analytical solution includes the effects of bed-generated turbulence, lateral shear turbulence and secondary flows, and therefore reproduces many of the main features of river channel flow. The solution closely simulates the process involved in river gauging by the current-meter method. Recent data from the Science and Engineering Research Council's Flood Channel Facility are used to illustrate the variation of shear stresses within the flow, and data from three river-gauging sites are used to illustrate the potential of the model.

The steps involved in the design of a modern river simulation package are also described. It is shown how choices made during the development of a model can have a significant impact on the success of model simulations. The development of a package requires many different skills, including those of engineering, mathematics and computing.


D. W. KNIGHT, BSc, MSc, PhD, CEng, MICE, MASCE (Member) - Senior Lecturer, School of Civil Engineering, University of Birmingham.

P. G. SAMUELS, MA, PhD, CEng, MICE (Member) - Principal Engineer, Hydraulics Research Ltd, Wallingford.

K. SHIONO, BSc, MSc, PhD, (Member) - Lecturer, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Bradford.


Water and Environment Journal, Volume 4 Issue 2, Pages 163 - 175