Hydrodynamic Effects of Debris Blockage and Scour on Masonry Bridges: Towards Experimental Modelling
Reason for embargo
This paper describes the preliminary stage of an ongoing project investigating the hydrodynamic effects of debris blockage at masonry bridges. Debris blockage is cited as one of the primary causes of bridge failures in the UK and around the world. Masonry bridges, many of which are valuable historical assets, are particularly vulnerable to debris blockage due to their short spans and low clearance. This paper presents work done as part of the first phase of the project involving experimental research to understand the scientific relationships between debris characteristics and flow conditions. The study, being carried out at Centre for Water Systems at University of Exeter, utilizes a 0.6m-wide and 10m-long flume to run hydraulic experiments in order to characterize the impact of debris blockage on flow hydrodynamics, scour, and hydrodynamic pressures and forces at masonry bridges. This paper outlines the design of the experimental setup and the reasoning behind the choices for preliminary experimental parameters. The experiments are to include testing of bridge models and various 3D-printed debris shapes under realistic flow conditions. Geometry of the bridge and debris mod-els are kept approximately similar to prototype conditions, with hydraulic conditions of the experiments de-signed to the degree that experimental constraints allow based on Froude similarity. Velocities, scour and hy-drodynamic pressures are measured using an Acoustic Doppler Velocimeter, echo-sounding concept and pres-sure sensors, respectively. Preliminary results indicate that the designed experiments have the potential to en-hance our understanding of the hydrodynamic effects of debris blockage.
The research presented in this paper was supported by funding from the UK’s Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) under grant EP/M017354/1. The authors are grateful to project partners for their support, particularly Devon County Council and Network Rail for providing useful prototype data.
This is the author accepted manuscript. The final version is available from CRC Press via the DOI in this record
8th International Conference on Scour and Erosion, 12-15 September 2016, Oxford, UK
In: Scour and Erosion, edited by John Harris, Richard Whitehouse, Sarah Moxon (CRC Press) pp. 743–750. 9781138029798