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Theoretical and Analytical Approaches for Investigating the Relations between Sediment Transport and Channel Shape

Authors: Nidal Hadadin


This study investigated the effect of cross sectional geometry on sediment transport rate. The processes of sediment transport are generally associated to environmental management, such as pollution caused by the forming of suspended sediment in the channel network of a watershed and preserving physical habitats and native vegetations, and engineering applications, such as the influence of sediment transport on hydraulic structures and flood control design. Many equations have been proposed for computing the sediment transport, the influence of many variables on sediment transport has been understood; however, the effect of other variables still requires further research. For open channel flow, sediment transport capacity is recognized to be a function of friction slope, flow velocity, grain size, grain roughness and form roughness, the hydraulic radius of the bed section and the type and quantity of vegetation cover. The effect of cross sectional geometry of the channel on sediment transport is one of the variables that need additional investigation. The width-depth ratio (W/d) is a comparative indicator of the channel shape. The width is the total distance across the channel and the depth is the mean depth of the channel. The mean depth is best calculated as total cross-sectional area divided by the top width. Channels with high W/d ratios tend to be shallow and wide, while channels with low (W/d) ratios tend to be narrow and deep. In this study, the effects of the width-depth ratio on sediment transport was demonstrated theoretically by inserting the shape factor in sediment continuity equation and analytically by utilizing the field data sets for Yalobusha River. It was found by utilizing the two approaches as a width-depth ratio increases the sediment transport decreases.

Keywords: Sediment Transport, shape factor, hydraulicgeometry, flow discharge, width depth ratio

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