Protection infrastructures and methods for reducing the impacts downstream of hydropower plants

Pisaturo, Giuseppe Roberto (2017) Protection infrastructures and methods for reducing the impacts downstream of hydropower plants. PhD thesis, University of Trento.

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Hydropower plants, in particular High-head Hydropower Plants (HPPs), are an important source of energy also for their role in covering the daily peaks of energy demand. However, HPPs, especially storage power plants, have several negative effects on the ecosystems of downstream watercourses inducing unnatural changes in flow regime (hydropeaking). One way to study ecological implications induced by hydropeaking is represented by the coupling of hydrodynamic models (CFD) with habitat suitability models, in which hydrodynamic parameters are typically used to describe the physical habitat of indicator species. The research activity wanted to investigate possible differences between the use of 2D and 3D CFD approaches to determine the watercourse hydraulic characteristics and their effects on habitat evaluations, performed with CASiMiR software, in complex morphology as usually presents in hydropeaked reaches. In particular the habitat suitability for the two case studies (Valsura River and Rio Selva dei Molini), is analysed comparing different approaches for the reconstruction of the velocity field (depth-averaged velocities from 2D modelling, bottom velocity field reconstruction with log-law approach from 2D modelling and bottom velocity field from 3D modelling). The results show that the habitat suitability index (HSI) using 2D or 3D hydrodynamic models can be significantly different. Considering the entire flow range of hydropeaking events, the habitat simulations with bottom flow velocities from 3D modelling provide suitable habitats over the entire flow range representing the availability of stable suitable habitats. The results from the hydraulics and habitat analyses are used to investigate the effects of a hydropeaking mitigation project on the Valsura River (realization of a compensation bypass tunnel to decrease the peak flow rate and to remodel the up and down flow ramping rates) and on Rio Selva dei Molini (morphological measures to reduce the hydropeaking effects).

Item Type:Doctoral Thesis (PhD)
Doctoral School:Civil, Environmental and Mechanical Engineering
PhD Cycle:29
Subjects:Area 08 - Ingegneria civile e Architettura > ICAR/01 IDRAULICA
Repository Staff approval on:03 Jul 2017 12:54

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