The one-dimensional, unsteady-flow model, BRANCH, and the Branched Lagrangian Transport Model (BLTM) were calibrated and validated for the Cooper and Wando Rivers near Charleston, South Carolina. Data used to calibrate the BRANCH model included water-level data at four locations on the Cooper River and two locations on the Wando River, measured tidal-cycle streamflows at five locations on the Wando River, and simulated tidal-cycle streamflows (using an existing validated BRANCH model of the Cooper River) for four locations on the Cooper River. The BRANCH model was used to generate the necessary hydraulic data used in the BLTM model. The BLTM model was calibrated and validated using time series of salinity concentrations at two locations on the Cooper River and at two locations on the Wando River. Successful calibration and validation of the BRANCH and BLTM models to water levels, stream flows, and salinity were achieved after applying a positive 0.45 foot datum correction to the downstream boundary. The sensitivity of the simulated salinity concentrations to changes in the downstream gage datum, channel geometry, and roughness coefficient in the BRANCH model, and to the dispersion factor in the BLTM model was evaluated. The simulated salinity concentrations were most sensitive to changes in the downstream gage datum. A decrease of 0.5 feet in the downstream gage datum increased the simulated 3-day mean salinity concentration by 107 percent (12.7 to 26.3 parts per thousand). The range of the salinity concentration went from a tidal oscillation with a standard deviation of 3.9 parts per thousand to a nearly constant concentration with a standard deviation of 0.0 parts per thousand. An increase in the downstream gage datum decreased the simulated 3-day mean salinity concentration by 47 percent (12.7 to 6.7 parts per thousand) and decreased the standard deviation from 3.9 to 3.4 parts per thousand.
Additional publication details
USGS Numbered Series
Simulation of water level, streamflow, and mass transport for the Cooper and Wando rivers near Charleston, South Carolina, 1992-95
Water-Resources Investigations Report
U.S. Geological Survey ;
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