# Chapter 13: Open Channel Flow

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Chapter 13: Open Channel Flow
Eric G. Paterson Department of Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering The Pennsylvania State University Spring 2005

Note to Instructors These slides were developed1, during the spring semester 2005, as a teaching aid for the undergraduate Fluid Mechanics course (ME33: Fluid Flow) in the Department of Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering at Penn State University. This course had two sections, one taught by myself and one taught by Prof. John Cimbala. While we gave common homework and exams, we independently developed lecture notes. This was also the first semester that Fluid Mechanics: Fundamentals and Applications was used at PSU. My section had 93 students and was held in a classroom with a computer, projector, and blackboard. While slides have been developed for each chapter of Fluid Mechanics: Fundamentals and Applications, I used a combination of blackboard and electronic presentation. In the student evaluations of my course, there were both positive and negative comments on the use of electronic presentation. Therefore, these slides should only be integrated into your lectures with careful consideration of your teaching style and course objectives. Eric Paterson Penn State, University Park August 2005 1 This Chapter was not covered in our class. These slides have been developed at the request of McGraw-Hill

Objectives Understand how flow in open channels differs from flow in pipes Learn the different flow regimes in open channels and their characteristics Predict if hydraulic jumps are to occur during flow, and calculate the fraction of energy dissipated during hydraulic jumps Learn how flow rates in open channels are measured using sluice gates and weirs

Classification of Open-Channel Flows
Open-channel flows are characterized by the presence of a liquid-gas interface called the free surface. Natural flows: rivers, creeks, floods, etc. Human-made systems: fresh-water aqueducts, irrigation, sewers, drainage ditches, etc.

Classification of Open-Channel Flows
In an open channel, Velocity is zero on bottom and sides of channel due to no-slip condition Velocity is maximum at the midplane of the free surface In most cases, velocity also varies in the streamwise direction Therefore, the flow is 3D Nevertheless, 1D approximation is made with good success for many practical problems.

Classification of Open-Channel Flows
Flow in open channels is also classified as being uniform or nonuniform, depending upon the depth y. Uniform flow (UF) encountered in long straight sections where head loss due to friction is balanced by elevation drop. Depth in UF is called normal depth yn

Classification of Open-Channel Flows
Obstructions cause the flow depth to vary. Rapidly varied flow (RVF) occurs over a short distance near the obstacle. Gradually varied flow (GVF) occurs over larger distances and usually connects UF and RVF.

Classification of Open-Channel Flows
Like pipe flow, OC flow can be laminar, transitional, or turbulent depending upon the value of the Reynolds number Where  = density,  = dynamic viscosity,  = kinematic viscosity V = average velocity Rh = Hydraulic Radius = Ac/p Ac = cross-section area P = wetted perimeter Note that Hydraulic Diameter was defined in pipe flows as Dh = 4Ac/p = 4Rh (Dh is not 2Rh, BE Careful!)

Classification of Open-Channel Flows
The wetted perimeter does not include the free surface. Examples of Rh for common geometries shown in Figure at the left.

Froude Number and Wave Speed
OC flow is also classified by the Froude number Resembles classification of compressible flow with respect to Mach number

Froude Number and Wave Speed
Critical depth yc occurs at Fr = 1 At low flow velocities (Fr < 1) Disturbance travels upstream y > yc At high flow velocities (Fr > 1) Disturbance travels downstream y < yc

Froude Number and Wave Speed
Important parameter in study of OC flow is the wave speed c0, which is the speed at which a surface disturbance travels through the liquid. Derivation of c0 for shallow-water Generate wave with plunger Consider control volume (CV) which moves with wave at c0

Froude Number and Wave Speed
Continuity equation (b = width) Momentum equation

Froude Number and Wave Speed
Combining the momentum and continuity relations and rearranging gives For shallow water, where y << y, Wave speed c0 is only a function of depth

Specific Energy Total mechanical energy of the liquid in a channel in terms of heads z is the elevation head y is the gage pressure head V2/2g is the dynamic head Taking the datum z=0 as the bottom of the channel, the specific energy Es is

Specific Energy For a channel with constant width b,
Plot of Es vs. y for constant V and b

Specific Energy This plot is very useful
Easy to see breakdown of Es into pressure (y) and dynamic (V2/2g) head Es   as y  0 Es  y for large y Es reaches a minimum called the critical point. There is a minimum Es required to support the given flow rate. Noting that Vc = sqrt(gyc) For a given Es > Es,min, there are two different depths, or alternating depths, which can occur for a fixed value of Es A small change in Es near the critical point causes a large difference between alternate depths and may cause violent fluctuations in flow level. Operation near this point should be avoided.

Continuity and Energy Equations
1D steady continuity equation can be expressed as 1D steady energy equation between two stations Head loss hL is expressed as in pipe flow, using the friction factor, and either the hydraulic diameter or radius

Continuity and Energy Equations
The change in elevation head can be written in terms of the bed slope  Introducing the friction slope Sf The energy equation can be written as

Uniform Flow in Channels
Uniform depth occurs when the flow depth (and thus the average flow velocity) remains constant Common in long straight runs Flow depth is called normal depth yn Average flow velocity is called uniform-flow velocity V0

Uniform Flow in Channels
Uniform depth is maintained as long as the slope, cross-section, and surface roughness of the channel remain unchanged. During uniform flow, the terminal velocity reached, and the head loss equals the elevation drop We can the solve for velocity (or flow rate) Where C is the Chezy coefficient. f is the friction factor determined from the Moody chart or the Colebrook equation

Best Hydraulic Cross Sections
Best hydraulic cross section for an open channel is the one with the minimum wetted perimeter for a specified cross section (or maximum hydraulic radius Rh) Also reflects economy of building structure with smallest perimeter

Best Hydraulic Cross Sections
Example: Rectangular Channel Cross section area, Ac = yb Perimeter, p = b + 2y Solve Ac for b and substitute Taking derivative with respect to To find minimum, set derivative to zero Best rectangular channel has a depth 1/2 of the width

Best Hydraulic Cross Sections
Same analysis can be performed for a trapezoidal channel Similarly, taking the derivative of p with respect to q, shows that the optimum angle is For this angle, the best flow depth is

Gradually Varied Flow In GVF, y and V vary slowly, and the free surface is stable In contrast to uniform flow, Sf  S0. Now, flow depth reflects the dynamic balance between gravity, shear force, and inertial effects To derive how how the depth varies with x, consider the total head

Gradually Varied Flow Take the derivative of H
Slope dH/dx of the energy line is equal to negative of the friction slope Bed slope has been defined Inserting both S0 and Sf gives

Gradually Varied Flow Introducing continuity equation, which can be written as Differentiating with respect to x gives Substitute dV/dx back into equation from previous slide, and using definition of the Froude number gives a relationship for the rate of change of depth

Gradually Varied Flow This result is important. It permits classification of liquid surface profiles as a function of Fr, S0, Sf, and initial conditions. Bed slope S0 is classified as Steep : yn < yc Critical : yn = yc Mild : yn > yc Horizontal : S0 = 0 Adverse : S0 < 0 Initial depth is given a number 1 : y > yn 2 : yn < y < yc 3 : y < yc

Gradually Varied Flow 12 distinct configurations for surface profiles in GVF.

Gradually Varied Flow Typical OC system involves several sections of different slopes, with transitions Overall surface profile is made up of individual profiles described on previous slides

Rapidly Varied Flow and Hydraulic Jump
Flow is called rapidly varied flow (RVF) if the flow depth has a large change over a short distance Sluice gates Weirs Waterfalls Abrupt changes in cross section Often characterized by significant 3D and transient effects Backflows Separations

Rapidly Varied Flow and Hydraulic Jump
Consider the CV surrounding the hydraulic jump Assumptions V is constant at sections (1) and (2), and 1 and 2  1 P = gy w is negligible relative to the losses that occur during the hydraulic jump Channel is wide and horizontal No external body forces other than gravity

Rapidly Varied Flow and Hydraulic Jump
Continuity equation X momentum equation Substituting and simplifying Quadratic equation for y2/y1

Rapidly Varied Flow and Hydraulic Jump
Solving the quadratic equation and keeping only the positive root leads to the depth ratio Energy equation for this section can be written as Head loss associated with hydraulic jump

Rapidly Varied Flow and Hydraulic Jump
Often, hydraulic jumps are avoided because they dissipate valuable energy However, in some cases, the energy must be dissipated so that it doesn’t cause damage A measure of performance of a hydraulic jump is its fraction of energy dissipation, or energy dissipation ratio

Rapidly Varied Flow and Hydraulic Jump
Experimental studies indicate that hydraulic jumps can be classified into 5 categories, depending upon the upstream Fr

Flow Control and Measurement
Flow rate in pipes and ducts is controlled by various kinds of valves In OC flows, flow rate is controlled by partially blocking the channel. Weir : liquid flows over device Underflow gate : liquid flows under device These devices can be used to control the flow rate, and to measure it.

Flow Control and Measurement Underflow Gate
Underflow gates are located at the bottom of a wall, dam, or open channel Outflow can be either free or drowned In free outflow, downstream flow is supercritical In the drowned outflow, the liquid jet undergoes a hydraulic jump. Downstream flow is subcritical. Free outflow Drowned outflow

Flow Control and Measurement Underflow Gate
Schematic of flow depth-specific energy diagram for flow through underflow gates Es remains constant for idealized gates with negligible frictional effects Es decreases for real gates Downstream is supercritical for free outflow (2b) Downstream is subcritical for drowned outflow (2c)

Flow Control and Measurement Overflow Gate
Specific energy over a bump at station 2 Es,2 can be manipulated to give This equation has 2 positive solutions, which depend upon upstream flow.

Flow Control and Measurement Broad-Crested Weir
Flow over a sufficiently high obstruction in an open channel is always critical When placed intentionally in an open channel to measure the flow rate, they are called weirs

Flow Control and Measurement Sharp-Crested V-notch Weirs
Vertical plate placed in a channel that forces the liquid to flow through an opening to measure the flow rate Upstream flow is subcritical and becomes critical as it approaches the weir Liquid discharges as a supercritical flow stream that resembles a free jet

Flow Control and Measurement Sharp-Crested V-notch Weirs
Flow rate equations can be derived using energy equation and definition of flow rate, and experimental for determining discharge coefficients Sharp-crested weir V-notch weir where Cwd typically ranges between 0.58 and 0.62

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