A continued evaluation of United States Bureau of Reclamation type IX baffled chute spillway design procedures

Ian Gstalder, Alexander Williams, Christopher J. Brown, Raphael Crowley


The design of Type IX baffled chute spillways is important since many existing dams around the world utilize them. However, the current available design guidance is based upon older physical models studied in the 1950s. This design guidance provides suggested baffle sizes based upon spillway inflow ranges. A designer can develop multiple realizations of baffle size and configuration that can meet the requirements of the design guidance, but the chosen design may not be the most economical or best performing. This study reviewed the design guidance thoroughly and also completed supplemental computational fluid dynamic (CFD) simulations of two hypothetical design spillways. The results from the modeling showed that it is possible to develop a smaller, less-costly design that can perform better than a more conservative case that was assumed to be safer. The study also provides some further design flow chart tools that can assist future designers to develop better chute spillway designs.

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