The interest of a consulting company in designing stepped spillways in roller compacted concrete (RCC) dams led us to propose the possibility of building this type of spillway without sidewalls. Previous research on stepped spillways has focused on characterizing the complex hydraulic behavior of flow on these structures, as well as design criteria. Such studies have usually been conducted on stepped spillways with a constant width along the spillway, that is, with sidewalls. In the present work, we report the results of the physical modeling of a generic stepped spillway without sidewalls (slope 1v:0.8h). In general terms, the lack of sidewalls produces a lateral expansion of water and therefore a non-uniform longitudinal and transversal discharge distribution. Consequently, the flow type, characteristic water depth, velocity, air concentration, and pressure fields change along and across the spillway. The resulting data demonstrate that the distribution of the different variables studied depend on the specific discharge at the entrance and the spillway height.

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Published on 01/01/2015

DOI: 10.1139/cjce-2014-0427
Licence: CC BY-NC-SA license

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