Using Acoustic Measurements as a Surrogate Technique for Measuring Sediment Transport

Author(s): Chambers, J.; Kleinert, D.; Carpenter, B.; Goodwiller, B.; Wren, D.; Kuhnle, R.

The diversity in climate, topography, soil types, and cropping practices within the United States lends itself to numerous soil erosion and water contamination mechanisms. The measurement of sediments transported in waterways using acoustic techniques can provide valuable information which can support both systems for planning and assessment and the development of better erosion control technologies. The collaboration between the NCPA and USDA-ARS-NSL has focused on the development and evaluation of innovative acoustic hardware and measurement techniques to monitor sediment transport. Most current techniques are often prohibitively expensive and not easily adaptable for in-situ measurements. Furthermore, manual techniques are often spatially and temporally coarse, cannot easily monitor particle movement over time and could modify the evaluated particle size distribution since aggregates are often broken up in sample collection and handling. In contrast, acoustic techniques tend to be amenable to in-situ measurement, are less costly, less invasive, and allow for long-term monitoring. The presentation will provide a survey of our work on using acoustics for monitoring sediment transport. This includes near bed, suspended, sand sized particles (100-1000 micron), clays and silts (0.1 – 64 micron diameter particles) which tend to be mixed uniformly throughout the water column along with future plans to investigate kinetic energy impact plates to monitor gravel bedload movement.

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Technical Sessions

1 Best Management Practices #1
2 Delta Water Assessment
3 Flood Assessment & Mgmt.
4 Wetlands
5 Watershed Mgmt. #1
6 Non-Point Source Assessment
7 Modeling
8 Water Quality
9 Best Mgt. Practices #2
10 Delta Water Conservation
11 Sedimentation
12 Storm Water
13 Watershed Mgt. #2
14 Public Water Systems
15 Surface Water Assessment & Evaluation

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