Modeling the hydraulic characteristics of fully developed flow in corrugated steel pipe culverts

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Toews, Jonathan Scott
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The process of fish migration within rivers and streams is important, especially during the spawning season which often coincides with peak spring discharges in Manitoba. Current environmental regulations for fish passage through culverts require that the average velocity be limited to the prolonged swimming speed of the fish species present. In order to examine the validity of this approach, physical model results were used to calibrate and test a commercially available Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) model. Detailed analysis showed that CFD models and the empirical equations used were both able to give a better representation of the flow field than the average velocity. However, the empirical equations were able to provide a more accurate velocity distribution within the fully developed region. A relationship was then developed, to estimate the cumulative percent area less than a threshold velocity within CSP culverts, to be used as a guideline during the design phase.
culverts, three-dimensional model, hydraulic model, fish passage, empirical model