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Hydroenvironmental research centre

Hydroenvironmental engineering

The Hydro-environmental Research Centre researches the development and application of computer models for investigating flow, water quality, sediment and contaminant transport processes, in coastal waters, estuaries and river basins.

The Centre has a large, well equipped hydraulics laboratory which includes a large tidal basin, two recirculating flumes and a large tidal flume. Sophisticated measuring equipment include a number of Acoustic Doppler Velocimeters, two digital fluorometers, a bed profiler, an automated multi-probe water level monitoring system, and access to a Laser Doppler Anemometer.

Technical features

  • Model Water Treatment Tank (constructed in-house) is a 3 m long x 2 m wide x 1.5 m deep model water treatment tank, used for studying mixing processes in water treatment tanks.
  • Narrow Open Channel Flume (constructed in-house) is a 10 m long x 0.3 m wide x 0.3 m deep recirculating unidrectional flume for open channel hydraulics flow studies.
  • Recirculating Unsteady Flow Flume (constructed in-house) is a 1.2 m wide and 17 m long and capable of delivering 1 m/s current with a depth of 0.8 m.
  • Tidal Basin (constructed in-house) is a large coastal basin for tidal flow studies, with recirculating river flows.
  • Tidal Basin with Riverine Inputs (constructed in-house) is a large 5 m x 4 m x 0.8 m deep coastal basin, with overflow weir for tidal generation, with recirculating flow for riverine inputs.
  • Wide Open Channel Flume (Wide Armfield) is a 10 m long x 1.2 m wide x 0.3 m deep recirculating unidrectional flume for open channel hydraulics flow studies.

Practical applications

As well as understanding and managing the hydro-environment, the Centre is actively involved in research and development to design, test and simulate tidal stream turbines and other renewable energy structures, such as a possible Severn Barrage.

The Hydro-environmental Research Centre is currently involved in a number of large projects funded by the Natural Environment Research Council, the European Regional Development Fund, the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales and the Countryside Council for Wales and CH2M HILL.