ASDSO Dam Safety Toolbox


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“’The ultimate destiny of all reservoirs is to be filled with sediment,’ (Linsley et al. 1992). The question is how long will it take? Also, as the sediment accumulates with time, will it adversely affect water control goals?”.[1]

“Existing reservoirs are routinely surveyed to determine sediment deposition and resulting loss of storage”.[1]

While the effects and results of sedimentation can be easily observed and measured, predicting and calculating the movement of sediment quantities is less straightforward. Sedimentation engineering combines river and particle hydraulics, therefore, collecting as much data as reasonably possible for river channel geometry, stage-discharge relationships, riverbed material, suspended material characteristics, upstream sources of sediment and debris, likelihood of channel migration or degradation, and flow characteristics, allows the engineer to select the most appropriate sediment transport modeling method(s) and reduce the level of uncertainty associated with the selected model(s).

Best Practices Resources

Hydrologic Engineering Requirements for Reservoirs (EM 1110-2-1420), USACE

Dam Removal Analysis Guidelines for Sediment, USBR

Reservoir Sedimentation (Developments in Water Science) by Dr. George W. Annandale (ISBN-13: 978-0444427298)


Revision ID: 7039
Revision Date: 07/11/2023