Team STREAM

Team Stream will focus on issues of sediment transport related to stream and delta restoration problems using state of the art facilities at SAFL tied with field studies in nearby stream restoration sites. Studies will be conducted in SAFL’s flumes and in the Outdoor Stream Laboratory.  Examples of research projects include:  (1) Gravel patches in rivers. Particles tend to self-segregate according to particle properties (such as size and density) leading to what are often dramatic examples of pattern formation. One of many examples involves the formation and evolution of gravel patches along a river bed: Along a river that is typically transporting a wide distribution of particle sizes, relatively narrowly distributed patches of gravel may form along a river bed. The patches both influence the transport of gravel and provide spawning grounds for certain fish species. There is no predictive formulation for these patches. This project will focus on formation of gravel patches under different conditions including flow conditions and sediment supply. (2) Bank stability in the presence of an infusion of fines. Under flood conditions, rivers are subjected to extra shear stress due to the extra flow of water. They are inundated with additional particles, usually much finer than those present in the river. This project will focus on experimental studies of the particle size ratio over which this is a significant issue for stream restoration projects and field studies to determine where these ratios will occur in local stream restoration projects. (3) Infiltration of fines into a gravel bed. When small sized particles of diameter df are introduced onto base of larger sized particles of diameter dc, if they are sufficiently small they can travel into the pore spaces and clog them, a process called infiltration. This can critically affect fish habitat as it reduces the flow of oxygen, nutrients, and waste.

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