Representation of Large Wood Structures Using a Two-Dimensional Model

Project ID: 1756
Principal Investigator: Mike Sixta
Research Topic: Ecosystem Needs
Funded Fiscal Years: 2017 and 2018
Keywords: None

Research Question

(1) Can a two-dimensional (2D) static bed numerical model be used to replicate water surface elevation changes, velocity changes, and/or eddy patterns created from a large wood structure?
(2) Is there a best approach to most accurately represent a large wood structure in a 2D static bed numerical model?
(3) What are the limitations with trying to represent large wood structures with a 2D static bed model, and can these limitations be overcome by making some simplifying assumptions?

Need and Benefit

An understanding of the importance and need of large wood in river systems has gained significant strength in the research and applied studies of eco-hydraulics within recent history. The ability of large wood to effectively create dynamic, high integrity aquatic and riparian habitats has led many regulatory agencies to recommend large scale reintroduction and reinvigoration of large wood regimes. Various federal and state agencies are advocating that Reclamation use these types of "soft" engineering approaches to meet endangered species requirements while maintaining water delivery needs.
Large wood structures are being incorporated into project designs at a more frequent rate today than ever before, each with a need for a better understanding of the effects of implementing these types of structures. The failure of wood placements in restoration projects is entirely the fault of design, not the material. Having a better understanding of the resulting hydraulics of these structures would aid in better ensuring the design of stable wood structures.

Contributing Partners

Contact the Principal Investigator for information about partners.

Research Products

Bureau of Reclamation Review

The following documents were reviewed by experts in fields relating to this project's study and findings. The results were determined to be achieved using valid means.

Representation of Large Wood Structures Using a Two-dimensional Model (final, PDF, 5.9MB)
By Mike Sixta
Research Product completed on September 30, 2019

This research product summarizes the research results and potential application to Reclamation's mission.

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Last Updated: 6/22/20