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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Improving Computational Modeling in Support of Better Erosion and Sediment Movement Control in Agricultural Watersheds

Location: Watershed Physical Processes Research Unit

Project Number: 6408-13000-025-01
Project Type: Specific Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Jun 01, 2011
End Date: May 31, 2016

Objective:
Objective 1: Improve the capability, accuracy and efficiency of the computational modeling technology and methodology to better predict the free surface flows associated with physical processes, e.g. complex flows over irregular and varying topography resulting from storms, levee breaching and dam failure. (2.2) Objective 2: Integrate the improved free surface flow models with the erosion and sediment transport models to quantify and predict ephemeral gully development, dam and levee breaching, and sediment relocation and control during dam removal or failure. (2.1, 2.2, 2.4) Objective 3: Develop and upgrade models to better predict the movement and dispersion of agricultural contaminants and their interactions with the sediment and bed materials in surface water systems. (2.2) Objective 4: Integrate and improve decision support systems for watershed management that are reliable, computationally efficient, readily usable, and transferable. (2.3, 2.4)

Approach:
In order to better assess and better predict soil erosion and sediment movement in the stream system of agricultural watershed, existing technology must be upgraded to assess and improve predictions for more realistic conditions in particular those that are encountered during extreme events that threatens life, property, and agricultural production areas. The objectives of this project relate to The Action Plan of the National Program NP211, Problem Area 2 concerning prediction and quantification of in-stream erosion and sedimentation processes. Specifically, the first objective addresses the need for improving the capability, accuracy, and efficiency of the computational modeling technology of free surface flows in stream systems of watersheds that must reflect more realistic and complex physical realizations, conditions and processes (2.2). The second objective relates to erosion and sediment movement during rapidly varying flows such as in gully development (2.1), dam failure and removal (2.1, 2.2), embankment erosion and channel migration (2.4). The third one relates to the transport and physical dispersion of sediment attached, dissolved, and exchanged between the sediment and water phase in open water bodies of the agricultural environment (2.2). The fourth objective concerns the development of decision support systems for better water management purposes such as for watershed protection, flood prevention, and environmental protection (2.3 and 2.4).

Last Modified: 7/28/2014
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