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Explaining artificial side channel dynamics using data analysis and model calculations

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Published on 15/02/2018 by van Denderen, R. P., Schielen, R. M. J., Westerhof, S. G., Quartel, S., & Hulscher, S. J. M. H.

Contact details

Pepijn van Denderen

University of Twente

Output contains: Dataset access

The spatial variation of the D50 diameter in mm, the silt/clay fraction, and the gravel fraction in the three side channels at Gameren. (Source: van Denderen et al. 2019)

Innovative components

We studied for the first time the development of a side channel in detail and over a long time scale. We combined bed level measurements, sediment samples and 2D hydrodynamic model results to characterize the development of the side channel system at Gameren in the river Waal. In the channels mainly fine sand is deposited that in the main channel is transported as suspended bed-material load. In the longest side channel, the bed shear stress is sufficiently low such that also wash load is deposited.

Findings and implications to practice

  • Artificial or man-made side channels in the river Waal show large aggradation.
  • The sediment that is deposited depends on the bed level and the bed shear stress.
  • The flow frequency of a side channel has a large effect on the aggradation rates. In the river Waal, a more frequently flowing side channel results in lower aggradation rates.
  • In addition, we found that sediment started to fill in or change the initial bed level in up to 1 meter within the 5 years after the side channel construction.

Related Content


Dataset access

Dateset is available for download in 4TUDataCentrum

Related outputs

Morphodynamic assessment of side channel systems using a simple one-dimensional bifurcation model and a comparison with aerial images

To aid the future design and maintenance, a set of diagrams allow to estimate both the equilibrium state and the time that takes for the bed load of the main channel to aggrade or deposit in the side channel.

05/12/2017 by Pepijn van Denderen et al.

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Contains: Dataset upon request Storyline for practice

Last modified: 29/01/2019