Density Flow Regime of Franklin D. Roosevelt Lake

by Robert T. Jaske,
George R. Snyder,

Serial Information: Journal of the Sanitary Engineering Division, 1967, Vol. 93, Issue 3, Pg. 15-28

Document Type: Journal Paper


The thermal regime of Lake Roosevelt for the summers of 1964 and 1965, when compared with Yih and the Laboratory studies of Debler, shows good agreement regarding the position of the interfacial layer between the upper relatively stagnant zone and the region of primary flow transport. Further study of the temperature data and confirmation by a limited amount of current measurement shows the location of a second, lower interface roughly conforming to the upper boundary. During the season when stratification occurs, the resulting jet flow travels in a flat, undulating fashion, at times rising above the level of the discharge. Existing theory appears inadequate to fully predict this behavior, although an empirical relationship can be derived to perform engineering analysis. The study confirms the necessity to consider density currents in the management of special releases and in thermal and chemical material balances. Furthermore, the dynamic conditions within the reservoir distort the resulting flow jets to the extent that cooler masses can be by-passed. Another result is the blocking of the formation of normal current jets, and, as a consequence, Lake Roosevelt fills with cool water by displacement from the north without any significant horizontal redistribution.

Subject Headings: Laboratory tests | Density currents | Lakes | Thermal effects | Temperature measurement | Travel time | Comparative studies | Freight transportation

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