Numerical investigations

Complementary to physical modelling, self-contained research in the form of numerical models, are also applied at the institute.  1D, as well as 2D and 3D software is used for this purpose. In the following, some application and research areas are shown:

Free surface flow

The performance of hydraulic structures is very dependent on geomorphological and hydrological conditions. The intervention to improve or maintain sustainable flow conditions requires monitoring, interpretation and setup of reliable models to simulate the system performance in future under varying conditions. Therefor physical model tests, numerical simulations and in situ measurements - carefully interpreted – are applied, their insufficiencies are to be identified and the need of scientific research to improve their capabilities need to be addressed.

Especially time dependent inflow and retention are of research interest to provide information on flood forecast and inundation studies.

Pipe flow

Fluid structure interaction

For the efficient energy production with hydro power plants - to immediately provide and store electric energy – large reservoir volumes are the valuable asset. Hydro power plants with large retention structures – due to its inherent risk potential - need to be designed, constructed, operated and maintained very carefully. Especially for ever-increasing challenging site conditions, retention structures deserves high attention for robust performance during construction, impounding and changing operation conditions. During severe loading conditions – e.g. abutment irregularities or the safety evaluation earthquake – appropriate nonlinear numerical models provide valuable results to assess the overall system performance. Fluid and abutment structure interaction plays a significant role for detailed nonlinear analyses.

Smoothed-Particle-Hydrodynamik (SPH)

Video 01-Impact of jet in pluge - pool
Video 02-Bed degradation due to jet

Smoothed particle hydrodynamics (SPH) is a mesh-free Lagrangian computational method used to simulate the mechanics of continuum media, such as solid mechanics and flows.

The impact of jet on the stilling basin is very crucial and responsible for causing the long-term bed degradation. The depth of jet impact has to be identified and studied before the construction. Therefore, the PreonLab solver was used for the case study of plunge pool and loose bed material to identified the impact of jet from the dam.

More about the software used can be found here:

flood analysis ©; IWB - TU Graz
surge tank simulation ©; IWB - TU Graz
emptying behaviour ©; IWB - TU Graz
flow investigations / loss coefficients ©; IWB - TU Graz