Management of fluid mud in estuaries, bays, and lakes. II: Measurement, modeling, and management

Journal of Hydraulic Engineering
By: , and 



Techniques for measurement, modeling, and management of fluid mud are available, but research is needed to improve them. Fluid mud can be difficult to detect, measure, or sample, which has led to new instruments and new ways of using existing instruments. Multifrequency acoustic fathometers sense neither density nor viscosity and are, therefore, unreliable in measuring fluid mud. Nuclear density probes, towed sleds, seismic, and drop probes equipped with density meters offer the potential for accurate measurements. Numerical modeling of fluid mud requires solving governing equations for flow velocity, density, pressure, salinity, water surface, plus sediment submodels. A number of such models exist in one-, two-, and three-dimensional form, but they rely on empirical relationships that require substantial site-specific validation to observations. Management of fluid mud techniques can be classified as those that accomplish: Source control, formation control, and removal. Nautical depth, a fourth category, defines the channel bottom as a specific fluid mud density or alternative parameter as safe for navigation. Source control includes watershed management measures to keep fine sediment out of waterways and in-water measures such as structures and traps. Formation control methods include streamlined channels and structures plus other measures to reduce flocculation and structures that train currents. Removal methods include the traditional dredging and transport of dredged material plus agitation that contributes to formation control and/or nautical depth. Conditioning of fluid mud by dredging and aerating offers the possibility of improved navigability. Two examples—the Atchafalaya Bar Channel and Savannah Harbor—illustrate the use of measurements and management of fluid mud.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Management of fluid mud in estuaries, bays, and lakes. II: Measurement, modeling, and management
Series title Journal of Hydraulic Engineering
DOI 10.1061/(ASCE)0733-9429(2007)133:1(23)
Volume 133
Issue 1
Year Published 2007
Language English
Publisher ASCE
Description 16 p.
First page 23
Last page 38