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Using airborne remote-sensing imagery to assess flow releases from a dam in order to maximize renaturalization of a regulated gravel-bed river

M. S. Lorang, F. R. Hauer, D. C. Whited and P. L. Matson
Using airborne remote-sensing imagery to assess flow releases from a dam in order to maximize renaturalization of a regulated gravel-bed river (in The challenges of dam removal and river restoration, Jerome V. De Graff (editor) and James E. Evans (editor))
Reviews in Engineering Geology (2013) 21: 117-132

Abstract

Gravel-bed river floodplains are dynamic landscapes that support a high level of ecosystem biocomplexity and biodiversity in large part because of the continual physical turnover of habitat. We evaluated the potential of a gravel-bed river to do geomorphic work on a series of floodplains below a dam by linking airborne hyper-spectral imagery with corresponding ground-truth measures of flow velocity, water depth, floodplain surface topography, and vegetative cover. These data were analyzed in a geographic information system to map the spatial distribution of potential stream power over a range of discharge regimes. Nodes of flow separation at specific discharges that co-occurred with zones of high stream power were used as a metric to determine potential geomorphic threshold levels and location of channel avulsions. In order to address discharge duration as a factor affecting geomorphic change on the study floodplains, we established the relationship between discharge and total cumulative power applied to a single key floodplain and then used that relationship to examine historical discharge records and changes in flow release in terms of total cumulative power. We used the assumption that similar levels of total cumulative stream power, above a minimum geomorphic threshold, would produce similar levels of geomorphic work as a higher-magnitude, short-duration flood event. These results form the basis of an objective approach to evaluating flow releases needed from dams to maintain the dynamic structure and ecological function of gravel-bed river floodplains. Moreover, the methodologies presented herein lend themselves to quantitative investigation of potential geomorphic changes related to complete dam removal and return of normalized flow of water and materials through the river system.


ISSN: 0080-2018
EISSN: 2169-799X
Coden: GAEGA4
Serial Title: Reviews in Engineering Geology
Serial Volume: 21
Title: Using airborne remote-sensing imagery to assess flow releases from a dam in order to maximize renaturalization of a regulated gravel-bed river
Title: The challenges of dam removal and river restoration
Author(s): Lorang, M. S.Hauer, F. R.Whited, D. C.Matson, P. L.
Author(s): De Graff, Jerome V.editor
Author(s): Evans, James E.editor
Affiliation: University of Montana, Flathead Lake Biological Station, Polson, MT, United States
Affiliation: U. S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service, Clovis, CA, United States
Pages: 117-132
Published: 2013
Text Language: English
Publisher: Geological Society of America (GSA), Boulder, CO, United States
References: 32
Accession Number: 2013-055453
Categories: Environmental geologyEngineering geology
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Illustration Description: illus. incl. 4 tables, geol. sketch maps
N40°00'00" - N50°00'00", W120°00'00" - W110°00'00"
Secondary Affiliation: Bowling Green State University, USA, United States
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2019, American Geosciences Institute.
Update Code: 201334
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