The lateral distribution of depth-averaged velocity in a channel flow bend

Xiaonan Tang*, Donald W. Knight

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


This paper proposes an analytical model to predict the lateral distribution of streamwise velocity for flow in a curved channel with vertical sides, based on the depth-integrated Navier-Stokes equations. The model includes the effects of bed friction, lateral turbulence and secondary flows, where the additional secondary flow is approximated by a linear function of the lateral distance, as demonstrated by the limited data which are available. Two analytical solutions for the depth-averaged velocity are obtained, one for a flat bed and another for a bed with a transverse slope. Two parameters (denoted by m and n herein), which define the secondary flow, have been examined to analyze how they affect the velocity distribution in these two cases. Comparison of the analytical results with the limited experimental data available shows that the proposed model predicts the lateral distributions of depth-averaged velocity well. Further studies are needed to validate the values of the model parameters (m and n) for bends with different geometric properties.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)532-541
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Hydro-Environment Research
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2015


  • Channel bend
  • Curved channel
  • Hydraulics
  • Open channel flow
  • Velocity

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