At IMDC, a scientific research project was recently completed on "Numerical and Experimental Modelling of Near-Field Overflow Dredging Plumes". IMDC staff member Boudewijn Decrop obtained a PhD for conducting this research in collaboration with universities UGent and KULeuven.

During his PhD research, Boudewijn Decrop executed both physical modelling and CFD modelling of the water-sediment-air mixture released when Trailing Suction Hopper Dredgers (TSHD) use an overflow shaft to release excess water from the hopper. The multi-phase CFD model takes into account the realistic shape of a TSHD, air bubble drag and propeller jets. The model was validated with laboratory data and with field data.

The CFD model was then applied in a large number of cases which gave insight in the influence factors of near-field plume dispersion. The large dataset of CFD results was used to fit and validate a simplified parameter model. The much faster parameter model is coupled to hydrodynamic solvers to conduct far-field plume dispersion studies. The coupling of the detailed near-field plume model and the far-field plume model allows IMDC to conduct real-time forecasting simulations of dredging plume dispersion with significantly increased accuracy.


Thesis : Numerical and Experimental Modelling of Near-Field Overflow Dredging Plumes


For further information please contact Boudewijn Decrop

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