Investigation of Scouring of Rectangular Abutment in a Compound Channel Under Unsteady Flow (Experimental Study)

Document Type : Research Article


Civil Faculty, Semnan University, Semnan ,Iran


One of the most important parameters in the design of bridge abutments and piers is to calculate the depth of scouring. The previous relationships for measuring the scour depth were based on steady flow, and it is not expected that the amount of scour depth computed from these relationships is accommodated to the actual value during a flood wave. Inasmuch as in this condition, the flood hydrograph occurs in an unsteady state in which the discharge is variable between base and peak values. In this study, experiments were conducted to measure the clear-water scour depth of a rectangular abutment under steady and unsteady flow conditions by approaching flood waves with triangular hydrographs and equivalent stepped hydrographs in a compound channel. Then, by using the measured scour depths values in steady flows, a relationship is calculated to estimate the maximum scour depth in terms of dimensionless time parameter and flow intensity. By changing the peak discharge time parameter, the effect of slope at ascending and descending part of the triangular hydrograph on the scouring was investigated. A comparison of the scouring of two stepped hydrographs with the same time duration showed that the difference between the scouring values was 1.5%. Moreover, the results of the scour depth measurements of triangular and stepped hydrographs were compared.


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