Journal of Mountain Science

Effects of river width changes on flow characteristics based on flume experiment

Abstract The rapid changes in flow pattern due to varying channel widths will make significantly impact on the hydraulic structures and evolutions of open channel. To better understand the impact of varying width, a flume experiment with adjustable width and a depth-averaged two-dimension numerical model were used to analyze the variations of flow parameters. Our experimental results showed that flow velocity gradually increased with decreasing water depth in converging region, and decreased with increasing water depth in diverging zones. It was also found that the turbulence intensity laws in three directions were not agreed with the theoretical relationships proposed by Nezu and Nakagawa in 1993 in straight open channel flows. The flow in the channel with varying width may change from the supercritical flow to the subcritical flow as a function of Froude number. Our numerical simulations with different flow rates showed that most of the hydraulic jumps in diverging region were submerged jump and the degree of submergence increased with increasing flow rate in gradual channel transition. When the flow rate increased, the range of supercritical flow rapidly decreased and the flow changed from the supercritical condition to the subcritical condition in diverging sections.

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