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Experimental Study of the Development
Flow Region on Stepped Chutes

Rafael Murillo

Abstract
The development flow region of stepped chutes was studied experimentally. Three configuration of chute bed slopes 3.5H:1V, 5H:1V and 10H:1V were used to study the flow characteristics. Each model had five horizontal steps and with constant step height of 15 cm. Constant temperature anemometry was used to investigate the velocity field characteristics as well as local void fraction. Pressure transducers were used to examine the pressure distribution. The conditions of aerated and non-aerated cavity were studied.

It was found that the temperature anemometry is a valuable tool in the study of water flow problems due to its good spatial and temporal resolution. It is recommended that the constant overheat ratio procedure should be used in dealing with non-isothermal water flows.

Flow conditions along the development flow region were found to be quite complex with abrupt changes between steps depending whether or not the flow jet has disintegrated. The flow on this region does not resemble a drop structure and after the first step, the step cavity condition does not affect the flow parameters.

Pressure distribution was also found to be complex. It was found that there are no conclusive pressure profiles either on the step treads nor on step risers. No correlation was observed with the values of pool depth.

The instantaneous characteristics of the velocity field along the jet of a drop structure were also studied. It was concluded that the cavity condition does not affect the velocity field of the sliding jet. The shear stress layer at the jet/pool interface was quantified.

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