Sediment Transport Analysis
Sediment transport analysis is a critical and essential component of any stream or stream crossing design project. In stream restoration or enhancement design projects, stream instabilities directly relate to an imbalance in the stream energy to the extent where either too much or too little energy is present. This imbalance in stream energy is demonstrated through either observed excess sediment deposition or excess scour and soil erosion processes. The key to a successful stream restoration process is to determine the cause of the energy imbalance and correct it for that condition in the design. In the successfully restored stable system, regular periods of minor channel adjustments are normal in response to variable storm events; however, the dimension, pattern, and profile of the stream system should normalize around an equilibrium condition of channel geometry. Skelly and Loy’s expertise in this area includes sediment sampling and development of sediment rating curves for the stream, restoration design to manage stream energy, scour control, and sediment bed load requirements.