Erosional narrowing after dam removal: Theory and numerical model

M. Wong, A. Cantelli, C. Paola, G. Parker

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

Experiments carried out in a flume at St. Anthony Falls Laboratory, University of Minnesota have shown an interesting phenomenon that we refer to as "erosional narrowing". This occurs immediately after the sudden removal of a dam that is filled with sediment. A channel incises into the deposit after failure of the leading front of the sediment deposit. In the early stages of incision this channel may become significantly narrower as it undergoes degradation. Both incision and narrowing propagate upstream on a relatively short time. In the long term however, the depositional contribution from the side slopes eventually balances and then surpasses erosional narrowing, so the channel widens toward some new equilibrium state with a lower streamwise slope. This picture is at variance with the general belief that the incisional channel widens from the very beginning. A simplified 1-D model of the phenomenon is developed and implemented numerically; in it the time evolution of channel width depends on the streamwise gradient of sediment transport and fluvial erosion of the channel banks (sidewalls).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 2004 World Water and Environmetal Resources Congress
Subtitle of host publicationCritical Transitions in Water and Environmental Resources Management
EditorsG. Sehlke, D.F. Hayes, D.K. Stevens
Pages4401-4410
Number of pages10
StatePublished - 2004
Externally publishedYes
Event2004 World Water and Environmental Resources Congress: Critical Transitions in Water and Environmental Resources Management - Salt Lake City, UT, United States
Duration: Jun 27 2004Jul 1 2004

Publication series

NameProceedings of the 2004 World Water and Environmetal Resources Congress: Critical Transitions in Water and Environmetal Resources Management

Other

Other2004 World Water and Environmental Resources Congress: Critical Transitions in Water and Environmental Resources Management
CountryUnited States
CitySalt Lake City, UT
Period6/27/047/1/04

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)

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  • Cite this

    Wong, M., Cantelli, A., Paola, C., & Parker, G. (2004). Erosional narrowing after dam removal: Theory and numerical model. In G. Sehlke, D. F. Hayes, & D. K. Stevens (Eds.), Proceedings of the 2004 World Water and Environmetal Resources Congress: Critical Transitions in Water and Environmental Resources Management (pp. 4401-4410). (Proceedings of the 2004 World Water and Environmetal Resources Congress: Critical Transitions in Water and Environmetal Resources Management).