Hydrodynamic Simulations in Sediment-Carried Contaminant Modeling for the Buffalo River, New York

by Ruochuan Gu,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: North American Water and Environment Congress & Destructive Water


Accurate prediction of hydrodynamics is of great importance to modeling contaminant transport and water quality in a river and to estimating potential exposure contamination levels in the future and the recovery time for a no-action alternative in remediation of contaminated sediments. Considering highly meandering characteristics of the Buffalo River, a three-dimensional, dynamic model was selected based on its fully predictive capability and process-oriented feature. The model simulates changes in water depth and flow velocity with space and time in response to variation in flow rate and/or water surface elevation at boundaries for given bottom morphometry and initial conditions. The model can be employed to compute flow conditions in any river reaches for which historical flow data are not available for model calibration and to predict flow parameters for various future management scenarios. A rating-curve approach was developed for the lower reach of Buffalo River where hydrologic and hydraulic measurements were not conducted and for linking information provided by the hydrodynamic model to a contaminant modeL Rating curves, i.e. flow-stage relations, were re-constructed at selected stations by the hydrodynamic simulations of historical events. The results will later be used to simulate sediment movement and to predict contaminant fate and transport in the river.

Subject Headings: Water pollution | Simulation models | Sediment transport | Hydrologic models | Hydrodynamics | Contaminant transport | Water quality | New York | United States

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