Validation of streamflow measurements made with M9 and RiverRay acoustic Doppler current profilers

Journal of Hydraulic Engineering
By:  and 



The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Office of Surface Water (OSW) previously validated the use of Teledyne RD Instruments (TRDI) Rio Grande (in 2007), StreamPro (in 2006), and Broadband (in 1996) acoustic Doppler current profilers (ADCPs) for streamflow (discharge) measurements made by the USGS. Two new ADCPs, the SonTek M9 and the TRDI RiverRay, were first used in the USGS Water Mission Area programs in 2009. Since 2009, the OSW and USGS Water Science Centers (WSCs) have been conducting field measurements as part of their stream-gaging program using these ADCPs. The purpose of this paper is to document the results of USGS OSW analyses for validation of M9 and RiverRay ADCP streamflow measurements. The OSW required each participating WSC to make comparison measurements over the range of operating conditions in which the instruments were used until sufficient measurements were available. The performance of these ADCPs was evaluated for validation and to identify any present and potential problems. Statistical analyses of streamflow measurements indicate that measurements made with the SonTek M9 ADCP using firmware 2.00–3.00 or the TRDI RiverRay ADCP using firmware 44.12–44.15 are unbiased, and therefore, can continue to be used to make streamflow measurements in the USGS stream-gaging program. However, for the M9 ADCP, there are some important issues to be considered in making future measurements. Possible future work may include additional validation of streamflow measurements made with these instruments from other locations in the United States and measurement validation using updated firmware and software.
Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Validation of streamflow measurements made with M9 and RiverRay acoustic Doppler current profilers
Series title Journal of Hydraulic Engineering
DOI 10.1061/(ASCE)HY.1943-7900.0001087
Volume 142
Issue 2
Year Published 2015
Language English
Publisher American Society of Civil Engineers
Contributing office(s) Office of Surface Water
Description Article 04015054; 16 p.
First page 1
Last page 16
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