Special Issue "Recent Advances in Riverflow Research"

A special issue of Water (ISSN 2073-4441).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 March 2016).

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Thorsten Stoesser
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Director of the Hydro-environmental Research Centre, Cardiff School of Engineering, Cardiff University, Queen's Buildings, The Parade, CARDIFF CF24 3AA, Wales, UK
Prof. Dr. Roger A Falconer
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
CH2M HILL Professor of Water Management, President of the International Association for Hydro-Environment Engineering and Research, Cardiff School of Engineering, Cardiff University, Queen's Buildings, The Parade, CARDIFF CF24 3AA, Wales, UK

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Rivers carry a large amount of freshwater from their source to the sea/lake, while simultaneously shaping our land. They provide water, food, means of transportation, and renewable energy, but also disaster, destruction, and loss of life (in the form of floods). Detailed knowledge of fluvial and hydrodynamic processes in rivers and streams is important for river basin management and ecosystem services and remains a challenging task for hydraulic and environmental engineers and scientists from many different disciplines, including hydrology, ecology, geography, etc. Over a century of research has gone into understanding riverflows. However, despite our best efforts, sophisticated experimental tools, and advanced numerical models executed on ever-growing computational resources, many questions have still yet to be answered. Moreover, continuous population growth and climate change will bring many new questions.

This Special Issue aims at assembling the latest endeavors of riverflow research and novel findings that address current knowledge gaps. We encourage submissions from experimentalists and numerical modelers alike, as well as articles reporting the results of recent field campaigns covering all aspects of riverflow research, such as fundamental studies on the fluid mechanics in rivers and streams, research on sediment transport and water quality processes, as well as applied hydraulic engineering work.

Prof. Thorsten Stoesser
Prof. Roger Falconer
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Water is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


Keywords

  • riverflow research
  • physical experiments
  • numerical modeling
  • sediment transport
  • flooding
  • water quality processes.

Published Papers (9 papers)

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Open AccessArticle
Sinuosity-Driven Water Pressure Distribution on Slope of Slightly-Curved Riparian Zone: Analytical Solution Based on Small-disturbance Theory and Comparison to Experiments
Water 2016, 8(2), 61; https://doi.org/10.3390/w8020061 - 17 Feb 2016
Abstract
A curved riparian zone can create highly complex flow patterns that have a great effect on erosion, pollutant transport, surface water-groundwater exchange and habitat qualities. The small-disturbance theory has been applied to derive the analytical solutions of pressure distributions along a sinusoidal riverbank. [...] Read more.
A curved riparian zone can create highly complex flow patterns that have a great effect on erosion, pollutant transport, surface water-groundwater exchange and habitat qualities. The small-disturbance theory has been applied to derive the analytical solutions of pressure distributions along a sinusoidal riverbank. Experiments have also been performed to test the hydrodynamic and geomorphic effects on pressure distribution and to verify the applicability of the derived expressions. The derived expressions were simple, accurate and agreed remarkably well with experimental results for the riparian banks with a low degree of curvature. On the contrary, when a riparian bank had a high degree of curvature, these expressions applying the approach of small-disturbance, could not effectively estimate the pressure distributions for a complex bank boundary or complex flow conditions. Moreover, sensitive analysis has indicated that the disturbed pressures along the riparian banks increased with increasing Froude number Fr, as well as the ratio of bank amplitude to wavelength a/λ. However, a/λ has been found to have more significant influence on pressure variation in subcritical flow. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in Riverflow Research)
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Open AccessArticle
Assessing the Performance of In-Stream Restoration Projects Using Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) Transponders
Water 2015, 7(10), 5566-5591; https://doi.org/10.3390/w7105566 - 15 Oct 2015
Cited by 9
Abstract
Instream channel restoration is a common practice in river engineering that presents a challenge for research. One research gap is the development of monitoring techniques that allow for testable predictions of sediment transport and supply. Here we use Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) transponders [...] Read more.
Instream channel restoration is a common practice in river engineering that presents a challenge for research. One research gap is the development of monitoring techniques that allow for testable predictions of sediment transport and supply. Here we use Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) transponders to compare the short-term (1-year) sediment transport response to flood events in a restored and a control reach. The field site is Wilket Creek, an enlarged creek in a fully urbanized catchment without stormwater management control in Toronto, Ontario. The responses to three flooding periods, each of which are at or above the design bankfull discharge, are described. Key results are that (i) particle mobility is lower in the restored reach for all three periods; (ii) full mobility occurs in the control reach during the first two floods while partial mobility occurs in the restored reach; and (iii) the constructed morphology exerted a controlling influence on particle entrainment, with higher mobility in the pools. Log-transformed travel distances exhibit normal distributions when grouped by particle size class, which allows a statistical comparison with power law and other predictive travel-distance relations. Results show that three bedload transport conditions can occur, with partial mobility associated with a mild relation between particle size and travel distance and full mobility associated with either a flat or steep relation depending on the degree of integration of particles in the bed. Recommendations on seeding strategy and sample sizes are made to improve the precision of the results by minimizing confidence intervals for mobility and travel distances. Even in a short term study, the RFID sediment tracking technique allows a process-based assessment of stream restoration outcomes that can be used to justify the instream intervention and plan future attempts to stabilize and enhance the system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in Riverflow Research)
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Open AccessArticle
Effect of Submergence and Apron Length on Spillway Scour: Case Study
Water 2015, 7(10), 5378-5395; https://doi.org/10.3390/w7105378 - 12 Oct 2015
Cited by 5
Abstract
Large-scale water resources systems are often managed by an integrated set of hydraulic structures that are vulnerable to wider ranges of discharge and tailwater elevation than envisioned in their original design due to climate change and additional project objectives such as fostering healthy [...] Read more.
Large-scale water resources systems are often managed by an integrated set of hydraulic structures that are vulnerable to wider ranges of discharge and tailwater elevation than envisioned in their original design due to climate change and additional project objectives such as fostering healthy ecosystems. The present physical model study explored the performance of a spillway structure on the Kissimmee River, operated by the South Florida Water Management District, under extreme conditions of drought and flooding with accompanying low and high tailwater levels for both gate-controlled and uncontrolled spillway flow conditions. Maximum scour depths and their locations for two different riprap apron lengths downstream of the spillway stilling basin were measured along with the complex flow fields prior to scour. Effects of tailwater submergence, type of spillway flow and riprap apron length on scour results are interpreted in terms of the measured turbulent kinetic energy and velocity distributions near the bed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in Riverflow Research)
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Open AccessArticle
Combining Field and Laboratory Measurements to Determine the Erosion Risk of Cohesive Sediments Best
Water 2015, 7(9), 5061-5077; https://doi.org/10.3390/w7095061 - 18 Sep 2015
Cited by 14
Abstract
In contrast to non-cohesive sediments, the incipient motion of cohesive sediments is characterized by much more complex interactions between several sedimentary, biological, and chemical parameters. Thus, site-specific investigations are required to obtain information about the erosion stability of cohesive materials. This becomes even [...] Read more.
In contrast to non-cohesive sediments, the incipient motion of cohesive sediments is characterized by much more complex interactions between several sedimentary, biological, and chemical parameters. Thus, site-specific investigations are required to obtain information about the erosion stability of cohesive materials. This becomes even more relevant for contaminated sediments, stored in riverine sediments as a “burden of the past”, because of their remobilization potential during flood events. This article represents a twofold measuring strategy for the detection of erosion thresholds: an in situ device for determination of critical shear stresses in the field, and a laboratory approach where sediment cores are withdrawn and subsequently analyzed over depth. The combined measuring strategy was applied in the River Elbe and at selected sites of the catchment of the River Saale. The results show a great variety of erosion thresholds over depth, demonstrating the need to conduct vertical analyses, especially when addressing buried layers with contaminations. The latter is only possible in the laboratory but the in situ device revealed clear benefits in capturing the loose flocculent layer on top of the sediment that might be easily lost during sediment retrieval and transport. Consequently, it is ideal to combine both approaches for a comprehensive insight into sediment stability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in Riverflow Research)
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Open AccessArticle
Dynamic Lift on an Artificial Static Armor Layer During Highly Unsteady Open Channel Flow
Water 2015, 7(9), 4951-4970; https://doi.org/10.3390/w7094951 - 14 Sep 2015
Cited by 6
Abstract
The dynamic lift acting on a 100 mm × 100 mm section of a static armor layer during unsteady flow is directly measured in a series of physical experiments. The static armor layer is represented by an artificial streambed mold, made from an [...] Read more.
The dynamic lift acting on a 100 mm × 100 mm section of a static armor layer during unsteady flow is directly measured in a series of physical experiments. The static armor layer is represented by an artificial streambed mold, made from an actual gravel bed. Data from a total of 190 experiments are presented, undertaken in identical conditions. Results show that during rapid discharge increases, the dynamic lift on the streambed repeatedly exhibits three clear peaks. The magnitude of the observed lift depends on the following hydrograph characteristics: (1) the initial flow depth; (2) the ramping duration and therefore the ramping rate; and (3) the total discharge increase. An adjusted unsteadiness parameter combines those three hydrograph characteristics for rapid discharge increases. Direct correlations between the unsteadiness parameter and the measured dynamic lift during unsteady flow are presented. In addition, the armor layer porosity showed a major impact on the observed effects. It is shown that increasing bed porosity leads to decreasing dynamic lift. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in Riverflow Research)
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Open AccessArticle
Secondary Currents and Turbulence over a Non-Uniformly Roughened Open-Channel Bed
Water 2015, 7(9), 4896-4913; https://doi.org/10.3390/w7094896 - 09 Sep 2015
Cited by 16
Abstract
Large-eddy simulations (LES) of the flow over a non-uniformly roughened channel bed are carried out to study the effect of non-uniform bed roughness on turbulence driven secondary currents and turbulence statistics. The channel bed is comprised of alternating rough and smooth strips, the [...] Read more.
Large-eddy simulations (LES) of the flow over a non-uniformly roughened channel bed are carried out to study the effect of non-uniform bed roughness on turbulence driven secondary currents and turbulence statistics. The channel bed is comprised of alternating rough and smooth strips, the width of which corresponds to the water depth. The Reynolds number based on hydraulic radius and bulk velocity is 34,000. The LES are successfully validated using experimental data. The secondary flow and bed roughness have a significant effect on the streamwise velocity and second order turbulence statistics. Turbulence is enhanced over rough strips and suppressed over smooth strips. Significant lateral momentum transfer takes place due to both advection and turbulence. The bed shear stresses over the smooth strips are approximately four times less than over the rough strips a result of near bed low momentum fluid being transported from the rough strips to the smooth strips and high momentum fluid being convected from the surface towards the bed. The most significant terms in the streamwise momentum equation are quantified and discussed with regard to momentum transfer. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in Riverflow Research)
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Open AccessArticle
Integrated River and Coastal Flow, Sediment and Escherichia coli Modelling for Bathing Water Quality
Water 2015, 7(9), 4752-4777; https://doi.org/10.3390/w7094752 - 01 Sep 2015
Cited by 7
Abstract
Due to the increasing economic and cultural value of bathing waters and the shellfish industry in the UK and worldwide, water quality in estuarine and coastal waters has attracted considerable public attention in recent years. To obtain accurate predictions of the concentration distributions [...] Read more.
Due to the increasing economic and cultural value of bathing waters and the shellfish industry in the UK and worldwide, water quality in estuarine and coastal waters has attracted considerable public attention in recent years. To obtain accurate predictions of the concentration distributions of faecal indicator organisms (FIOs) in coastal waters for better management of bathing water compliance, it is necessary to build an integrated modelling system to predict the complete diffuse and point source inputs from river and catchment basins. In the present paper, details are given of the development of such an integrated modelling system for simulating the transport and decay processes of FIOs, from catchment areas upstream from the coastal region, in which a distributed catchment module, a 1D river network module and a 2D estuarine and coastal module are linked dynamically by boundary inputs and outputs. Extensive measured data from the catchments, river networks and estuaries have been collated to determine the model parameters. Verification results of the distribution of water levels, flows and velocities, and suspended sediment and Escherichia coli concentrations, at controlled monitoring sites are presented, which show that the integrated model predictions generally agree well with the measurements, although locally appreciable errors can occur. The model results also highlight the importance of including the flux of FIOs via sediments being an important factor in terms of assessing the quality of bathing waters. The main factors influencing the relatively high concentration values in the bathing region are analysed, based on the model predictions and measured data, with four categories of FIO concentration levels being reviewed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in Riverflow Research)
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Open AccessArticle
Flow Patterns in an Open Channel Confluence with Increasingly Dominant Tributary Inflow
Water 2015, 7(9), 4724-4751; https://doi.org/10.3390/w7094724 - 31 Aug 2015
Cited by 25
Abstract
Despite the ratio of incoming discharges being recognized as a key parameter in open-channel confluence hydrodynamics, little is known about the flow patterns when the tributary provides more than 90% of the total discharge. This paper offers a systematic study of flow features [...] Read more.
Despite the ratio of incoming discharges being recognized as a key parameter in open-channel confluence hydrodynamics, little is known about the flow patterns when the tributary provides more than 90% of the total discharge. This paper offers a systematic study of flow features when the tributary becomes increasingly dominant in a 90° confluence with a fixed concordant bed. Large-eddy simulations are used to investigate the three-dimensional complex flow patterns for three different discharge ratios. It is found that the tributary flow impinges on the opposing bank when the tributary flow becomes sufficiently dominant, causing a recirculating eddy in the upstream channel of the confluence, which induces significant changes in the incoming velocity distribution. Moreover, it results in stronger helicoidal cells in the downstream channel, along with zones of upwelling flow. In turn, the changed flow patterns also influence the mixing layer and the flow recovery. Finally, intermittent events of stronger upwelling flow are discerned. Improved understanding of flow patterns at confluences where the tributary is dominant is applicable to both engineering and earth sciences. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in Riverflow Research)
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Open AccessShort Communication
River Flows in the Ebro Basin: A Century of Evolution, 1913–2013
Water 2015, 7(6), 3072-3082; https://doi.org/10.3390/w7063072 - 19 Jun 2015
Cited by 5
Abstract
The water forecast is a major uncertainty in the design of strategies to cope with potential restrictions and ensure the availability of water, even during extreme events such as drought. In this context, our study aimed to present and analyze an updated broad [...] Read more.
The water forecast is a major uncertainty in the design of strategies to cope with potential restrictions and ensure the availability of water, even during extreme events such as drought. In this context, our study aimed to present and analyze an updated broad temporal and geographical overview of the evolution of river flows for the most important river in Spain, the Ebro river, from 1913 to 2013. Our main findings indicate a decreasing trend in water resources from 1913 to the present, and a significant level of volatility that reveals a striking irregularity, with asymmetric cycles and dry years. These findings question the current irrigation policies and together with a need to rethink their implementation should drive further research. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Recent Advances in Riverflow Research)
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