Hydraulics, Air Entrainment, and Energy Dissipation on a Gabion Stepped Weir
In the last decades the design of stepped spillways regained some interest because of their suitability with new construction methods including gabions. The hydraulic performances of gabion stepped weirs were investigated experimentally in terms of the flow patterns, air-water flow properties, and energy dissipation. A laboratory study was conducted in a 26.6 degrees slope (1V: 2H) and 0.10-m step height facility, with both smooth impervious and gabion steps. The visual observations highlighted the seepage flow through the gabions, inducing a modification of the cavity flow especially in the skimming flow regime. In skimming flows, higher velocities were measured at the downstream end of the gabion stepped chute, associated with smaller energy dissipation rates and lower friction factors, compared to the smooth impervious stepped chute data. (C) 2014 American Society of Civil Engineers.