Numerical Computation of Free Surface Weir Flow Using Isoparametric Finite Elements

by Mathini Sreetharan, Dewberry and Davis, Arlington, United States,

Abstract: Numerical computation of flows with a free surface boundary involves three problems in one: the internal flow problem, location of the free surface and the actual flow rate. The development of a mathematical model for inviscid free surface flow and a solution routine capable of predicting the free surface of weir flows are described in this paper. Variational principles are used to develop the mathematical model. A finite element mesh of 8-noded isoparametric parabolic rectangular elements and an optimization routine form the basis of the solution method. This method is used to solve uniform flow problems as well as flow over weirs. The numerical results are shown to be in agreement with experimental observations and other published data.

Subject Headings: Free flow | Free surfaces | Overland flow | Finite element method | Mathematics | Mathematical models | Weirs

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