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Dissolved Oxygen in a Shallow Ice-Covered Lake in Winter: Effect of Changes in Light, Thermal and Ice Regimes

Stratification in a Reservoir Mixed by Bubble Plumes under Future Climate Scenarios

Department of Architecture & Civil Engineering, University of Bath, Claverton Down, Bath BA2 7AY, UK
7 Lakes Alliance, 137 Main Street, Belgrade Lakes, ME 04918, USA
Colby College, University of Maine, Mayflower Hill Drive, Waterville, ME 04901, USA
Drinking Water Inspectorate, Area 1A, Nobel House, 17 Smith Square, London SW1P 3JR, UK
Bristol Water, Bridgwater Road, Bristol BS13 7AT, UK
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Lars Bengtsson
Water 2021, 13(18), 2467;
Received: 15 July 2021 / Revised: 18 August 2021 / Accepted: 25 August 2021 / Published: 8 September 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physical Processes in Lakes)
During summer, reservoir stratification can negatively impact source water quality. Mixing via bubble plumes (i.e., destratification) aims to minimise this. Within Blagdon Lake, a UK drinking water reservoir, a bubble plume system was found to be insufficient for maintaining homogeneity during a 2017 heatwave based on two in situ temperature chains. Air temperature will increase under future climate change which will affect stratification; this raises questions over the future applicability of these plumes. To evaluate bubble-plume performance now and in the future, AEM3D was used to simulate reservoir mixing. Calibration and validation were done on in situ measurements. The model performed well with a root mean squared error of 0.53 °C. Twelve future meteorological scenarios from the UK Climate Projection 2018 were taken and down-scaled to sub-daily values to simulate lake response to future summer periods. The down-scaling methods, based on diurnal patterns, showed mixed results. Future model runs covered five-year intervals from 2030 to 2080. Mixing events, mean water temperatures, and Schmidt stability were evaluated. Eight scenarios showed a significant increase in water temperature, with two of these scenarios showing significant decrease in mixing events. None showed a significant increase in energy requirements. Results suggest that future climate scenarios may not alter the stratification regime; however, the warmer water may favour growth conditions for certain species of cyanobacteria and accelerate sedimentary oxygen consumption. There is some evidence of the lake changing from polymictic to a more monomictic nature. The results demonstrate bubble plumes are unlikely to maintain water column homogeneity under future climates. Modelling artificial mixing systems under future climates is a powerful tool to inform system design and reservoir management including requirements to prevent future source water quality degradation. View Full-Text
Keywords: 3D modelling; stratification; bubble plumes 3D modelling; stratification; bubble plumes
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  • Externally hosted supplementary file 1
    Description: Supplementary data, including model runs, forcing data and MATLAB functions, were uploaded to the University of Bath Research Data Archive.
MDPI and ACS Style

Birt, D.; Wain, D.; Slavin, E.; Zang, J.; Luckwell, R.; Bryant, L.D. Stratification in a Reservoir Mixed by Bubble Plumes under Future Climate Scenarios. Water 2021, 13, 2467.

AMA Style

Birt D, Wain D, Slavin E, Zang J, Luckwell R, Bryant LD. Stratification in a Reservoir Mixed by Bubble Plumes under Future Climate Scenarios. Water. 2021; 13(18):2467.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Birt, David, Danielle Wain, Emily Slavin, Jun Zang, Robert Luckwell, and Lee D. Bryant 2021. "Stratification in a Reservoir Mixed by Bubble Plumes under Future Climate Scenarios" Water 13, no. 18: 2467.

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