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USGS Flood Information

Resources | Indirect Flood Measurement

Photos of USGS indirect measurement survey

A collection of useful information regarding indirect flood measurement methods of the USGS.


Links to Methods and Tools

  • General

    • TWRI 3-A1: General field and office procedures for indirect discharge measurement, by M.A. Benson and Tate Dalrymple, 1967. 30 pages.
    • L-1: Bureau of Reclamation Water Measurement Manual, 3rd ed., 2001. 317 pages. (useful for methods with no USGS guidance)
    • TWRI 3-A15: Computation of water-surface profiles in open channels, by Jacob Davidian. 1984. 45 pages.
    • OFR 88-707: Basic hydraulic principles of open-channel flow, by Harvey Jobson and David Froehlich. 1988. 150 pages.
  • Culverts

    • TWRI 3-A3: Measurement of peak discharge at culverts by indirect methods, by G.L. Bodhaine. 1965. 60 pages. See also: TWRI 3-A Errata (Errata to TWRI 3-A2, 3-A3, 3-A4, 3-A5, 3-A14).
    • CAP and CAPGUI: USGS Culvert Analysis Program (CAP) and CAP Graphical User Interface.
    • Fact Sheet 2013-3045: Users's Guide to the CAP-GUI Program. Nathan Bradley, 2013.
    • WRIR 98-4166: Users's Guide to the Culvert Analysis Program version 97-08. Janice Fulford, 1998.
    • OFR 95-137: Users's Guide to the Culvert Analysis Program. Janice Fulford, 1995.
  • Contracted Openings

    • TWRI 3-A4: Measurement of peak discharge at width contractions by indirect methods, by H.F. Matthai. 1967. 44 pages. See also: TWRI 3-A Errata (Errata to TWRI 3-A2, 3-A3, 3-A4, 3-A5, 3-A14).
    • Tech Memo 74.14: COMPUTATIONS - Bridge contraction ratio. 1974. 6 pages.
  • Critical Depth

    • Barnes, H.H., Jr., and Davidian, J., 1978, Indirect methods in hydrometry, in Herschy, R.W., ed. Hydrometry: New York, John Wiley and Sons, p. 149-204.
  • Dams and Weirs

    • TWRI 3-A5: Measurement of peak discharge at dams by indirect methods, by Harry Hulsing. 1967. 29 pages. See also: TWRI 3-A Errata (Errata to TWRI 3-A2, 3-A3, 3-A4, 3-A5, 3-A14).
    • Tech Memo 73.01: Computation of Discharge over embankments -- highway and railroad, by Howard Matthai. 1972. 3 pages.
  • Roughness value estimation

    • Analytical
      • Interactive n-value calculators - courtesy of the Illinois Water Science Center
      • Cowan, W.L., 1956, Estimating hydraulic roughness coefficients: Agricultural Engineering, v. 37, no. 7, p. 473-475.
    • Comparitive (photos)
      • Online version of Barnes, 1967 - courtesy of the Illinois Water Science Center
        • WSP 1849: Roughness characteristics of natural channels, by Harry H Barnes, Jr. 1967. 29 pages.
        • DS 668: Manning's Roughness Coefficients for Illinois Streams, by David Soong and others. 2012. 22 pages.
      • WSP 2339: Guide for Selecting Manning's Roughness Coefficients for Natural Channels and Flood Plains, by George Arcement and Verne Schneider. 1989. 44 pages. (primarily applicable to Southeastern US)
      • SIR 2006-5108: Selection of Manning's Roughness Coefficient for Natural and Constructed Vegetated and Non-Vegetated Channels, and Vegetation Maintenance Plan Guidelines for Vegetated Channels in Central Arizona, by Jeff V. Phillips and Saeid Tadayon. 2006. 29 pages.
    • Tabular
      • Tech Memo 93.17: Manning n for Corrugated Metal Culverts. 1993. 3 pages.
      • V.T. Chow, 1959, Open-Channel Hydraulics, McGraw-Hill, Inc., p. 680.
      • Brater & King ,1954, Handbook of Hydraulics, McGraw-Hill, Inc., 4th. ed.
  • Slope Area Method

    • TWRI 3-A2: Measurement of peak discharge by the slope-area method, by Tate Dalrymple and M.A. Benson, 1967. 12 pages. See also: TWRI 3-A Errata (Errata to TWRI 3-A2, 3-A3, 3-A4, 3-A5, 3-A14).
    • SAC and SACGUI: USGS Slope Area Computation Program (SAC) and SAC Graphical User Interface.
    • Fact Sheet 2012-3112: Users's Guide to the SAC-GUI Program. Nathan Bradley, 2012.
    • OFR 94-360: Users's Guide to the Slope Area Computation Program. Janice Fulford, 1994.
  • Slope Conveyance

    • Barnes, H.H., Jr., and Davidian, J., 1978, Indirect methods in hydrometry, in Herschy, R.W., ed. Hydrometry: New York, John Wiley and Sons, p. 149-204.

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