A GIS Model for Assessing the Impact of Increased Channel Discharges on Hydraulic Geometry

by Jeffrey C. Baxter, No affiliation information available.,
Gregory V. Wilkerson, No affiliation information available.,
Maggie Davison, No affiliation information available.,
Joshua C. Johnson, No affiliation information available.,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Bridging the Gap: Meeting the World's Water and Environmental Resources Challenges


A GIS model is being developed that can be used to assess the impact of increased channel discharges on the hydraulic geometry of streams in the Powder River (structural) Basin in northeast Wyoming. The program, Erosion Potential Modeler, uses watershed characteristics to predict changes in channel morphology. From USGS digital elevation models, the attributes of a selected watershed are obtained and then used to predict stream discharge characteristics and, ultimately, equilibrium channel morphology. The program operator can model higher discharges and compare the resultant channel morphology with the equilibrium morphology. As a result of coal bed methane gas development, ephemeral streams in the Powder River Basin are expected to see an increase in discharge of more than 3.7 m³/s for the next 20 years. Erosion Potential Modeler will allow watershed managers to estimate the effect of increased discharges on channel morphology in the Powder River Basin.

Subject Headings: Hydraulic models | Water discharge | Channels (waterway) | Geographic information systems | Structural models | Geometrics | Basins | Watersheds | Wyoming | United States

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