ADCP Flow Velocity And Discharge

ADCP Flow Velocity and Rated Discharge

The speed (velocity), depth stratified flow direction and total flow volumes can be measured within rivers, streams and open channels (for example, cooling water Intake forebays) using a Mobile Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler (ADCP) system.

This type of information is important for;

  1. Identifying areas where flow exceeds the critical approach velocities for fish (i.e. fish passage design or assessing fish impingement risk)
  2. Identifying areas of potential bottom scour and/or sediment deposition (i.e. accumulation of mussel shells).
  3. River stage monitoring and flood risk assessment.
  4. Ensuring Permit to Take Water (PTTW) compliance for heavy industry, mining and electricity producers where cooling-water intake is required.
  5. Modelling fish egg and larval fish dispersal in lakes and rivers where cooling-water intake entrainment is a risk.

Our ADCP survey method follows closely the USGS standardized survey protocols for ADCP water velocity surveys using a moving boat (Mueller et al. 2014).

We use The SonTek RiverSurveyor M9 ADCP SYSTEM. It is a rugged and easily deployed ADCP survey system that can be used in shallow-water applications to provide estimates of discharge and vertically binned flow velocity throughout the water column. The system uses a 4-beam 1 MHz and 3 MHz transducer array to track particulate matter through the beams for estimating Doppler shift.

The RiverSurveyor M9 system can either be deployed on a “boogie Board” (and operated using wireless remote control) or deployed from a small boat using a wired configuration. Working from a small boat allows us to integrate our RTK GNSS derived heading data to ensure accurate compass azimuth information even at those sites where electro-magnetic interference is severe.