Development of a CFD based dam evaporation model

Craig, I. P. and Mossad, R. and Hancock, N. (2006) Development of a CFD based dam evaporation model. In: 11th International Health Summer School, 21-22 Nov 2006, Brisbane, Australia.


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Current trends of increased temperature and reduced rainfall in primary areas of agricultural production are driving Water Use Efficiency (WUE) research in Australia. Irrigation accounts for approximately 70% of fresh water use. Much of this stored in a million or so small dams, accounting for 9% of the total stored or 7000 GL. Approximately one half of this may be lost due to evaporation, but precise figures are unknown due to a lack of understanding of the relevant dam thermodynamics and associated evaporation physics. Work has commenced through an Australian Centre for Sustainable Catchments (ACSC) grant to develop a Computational Fluid Dynamics Dam Evaporation Model (DamCFD) to adequately quantify this loss, which constitutes a major economic limiting factor to Australia, and also gross inefficiency in terms of the environmental sustainability our fresh water resource. The aim of the project is to use CFD modeling to incorporate aerodynamic, heat transfer and thermodynamic theory to predict the evaporation of agricultural water, with storage morphology and characteristics of the surrounding terrain treated as important input parameters. Consideration of the flow of air, water and heat is required principally to simulate the vertical temperature profiles, air stability and the advective accumulation of warm surface water at the downwind end of the dam. It is intended that the development of this research capability at USQ will promote increased understanding of the complexities involved in open water evaporation. This will lead to more accurate estimates and better strategies for managing and controlling the evaporative loss of fresh water in Australia.

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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Commonwealth Reporting Category E) (Paper)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - USQ Other
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - USQ Other
Date Deposited: 11 Oct 2007 00:51
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2013 22:40
Uncontrolled Keywords: water use efficiency, evaporation, farm dam, computational fluid dynamics
Fields of Research (2008): 09 Engineering > 0914 Resources Engineering and Extractive Metallurgy > 091499 Resources Engineering and Extractive Metallurgy not elsewhere classified
09 Engineering > 0905 Civil Engineering > 090509 Water Resources Engineering
Fields of Research (2020): 40 ENGINEERING > 4019 Resources engineering and extractive metallurgy > 401999 Resources engineering and extractive metallurgy not elsewhere classified
40 ENGINEERING > 4005 Civil engineering > 400513 Water resources engineering

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