Digital particle image velocimetry records high resolution images and allows the identification of the position of points in different time instants. This paper explores the efficiency of the digital image-technique for remote monitoring of surface velocity and discharge measurement in hyper-concentrated flow by the way of laboratory experiment. One of the challenges in the application of the image-technique is the evaluation of the error in estimating surface velocity. The error quantification is complex because it depends on many factors characterizing either the experimental conditions or/and the processing algorithm. In the present work, attention is devoted to the estimation error due either to the acquisition time or to the size of the sub-images (interrogation areas) to be correlated. The analysis is conducted with the aid of data collected in a scale laboratory flume constructed at the Hydraulic laboratory of the Department of Civil, Environmental, Aerospace and of Materials Engineering (DICAM)—University of Palermo (Italy) and the image processing is carried out by the help of the PivLab algorithm in Matlab. The obtained results confirm that the number of frames used in processing procedure strongly affects the values of surface velocity; the estimation error decreases as the number of frames increases. The size of the interrogation area also exerts an important role in the flow velocity estimation. For the examined case, a reduction of the size of the interrogation area of one half compared to its original size has allowed us to obtain low values of the velocity estimation error. Results also demonstrate the ability of the digital image-technique to estimate the discharge at given cross-sections. The values of the discharge estimated by applying the digital image-technique downstream of the inflow sections by using the aforementioned size of the interrogation area compares well with those measured.
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