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Scour Around Bridge Piers

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e Printed in India

R ] GARDE*

AND U C KOTHYARI**

*/NSA Senior Scientist, Central Water and Power Research Station, Khadakwasla, Pune-4'11 024

(Received 10 June 1997; Revised 05 December 1997; Accepted 04 February 1998)

The paper describes the phenomenon of scour around bridge piers and then enumerates the methOds for its prediction.

The scour data from prototype bridges are analysed to comment on the relative accuracy of fo~r methods of s~our

prediction. Brief comments are made on scour ~ound bridg~ piers in clayey bed and gravel-bed nvers. Lastly, vanous

techniques studied for scour control and protectlOn are des,"nbed.

Key W d' Scour in Alluvial Streams; Scour Estimation; Scour Prevention; Scour Protection Devices;

or s. Lacey-Inglis Equation; LaurSen-Toch Equation; Melville & Sutherland's Equation; Chitale's

Method; Kothyari-Garde-Ranga Raju's Method

place due to four primary reasons. If the bridge is

Scour is the local lowering of stream bed elevation

located downstream of a large dam, there is a slow

which takes place in the vicinity or around a

lowering of the bed and reduction of stream slope

structure constructed in flowing water. Scour takes

due to degradation. Degradation takes place when

place around bridge piers, abutments, around

the stream transporting sediment becomes

spurs, jetties and breakwaters due to modification

deficient in sediment supply due to sediment being

of flow pattern in such a way as to cause increase

stored upstream of the dam. In extreme cases this

in local shear stress. This in tum dislodges the

lowering can be as much as 4 to 6 meters.

material on the stream bed resulting in local scour.

Secondly, if for reducing the cost of the bridge the

In the case of bridges, the estimation of correct

stream is contracted by building guide bunds etc.,

depth of scour below the stream bed is very

such contraction can cause additional lowering of

important since that detennines the depth of

the stream bed. The depth in the contracted section

foundation. Hubert has stated that since 1950 over

is given by

500 bridges in USA have failed and that the

majority of the failures were related to the scour of

DID I =(B /B ~O.69 to 0.79,

foundation material. Such data are not available for

... (1)

the Indian bridges; however, this has been the

matter of concern to the Government of India and where B and D are width and depth of flow in the

1

1

some detailed hydrologic and scour studies have

uncontracted section and Bi2 and D 2 are the

been undertaken at selected bridges by the corresponding values in the contracted section. The

concerned organisations. This concern about safety third type of lowering that takes place around the

of bridges is primarily due to three reasons which bridge pier is due to modification of flow structure

are: (1) inadequate knowledge about scour due to presence of the pier. Depending on the pier

phenomenon when the bridges were constructe~; shape and free stream condition, an eddy structure

(2) inadequate data on which the design flood was

comprising of one or more of the three eddy

chosen; and (3) increase in the loading on the structures, namely horse-shoe vortex, wave vortex

bridge due to increase in size of trucks, wagons, system and the trailing vortex system can fonn;

and their frequency of operation.

this increases the local shear on the bed and causes

Introduction

Professor R J Garde, Professor Emeritus, CWPRS, Pune-411 024

shown in Fig. 1. Lastly, additional scour can also

570

/~/~

_/'/

~-~/~"

'I/'ls

PIER~

~!

'~

'

Q.~'\'"

J 1

J :

,/,)

I I /---.

.I~~

._-....:...-

UJ

""

.,..fII-

. $-c '.',

''( -At!

><-

_ HORSE - SHOE

VORTEX

"-

"

pier axis.

Factors Affecting Scour Depth

A number of papers have been published since

1940 on various aspects of scour around bridge

piers. Based on the experimental work and some

theoretical analysis it is found that the following

factors. affect the scour depth at the bridge pier.

(a) Whether the Incoming Flow is Clear Water

Flow or it Carries Sediment: Clear water flow

occurs when u.lu.c is less than unity while for

sediment transporting flow u.lu.c is greater than

unity. Here U.=...JgDS is the shear velocity of flow

and U.c is the shear velocity at which bed material

starts moving, D is the depth of flow in the river

and S is the river slope. Average shear stress on the

bed is 'to= SfU~~1/ DS where 1/ is the unit weight of

water and Sf its mass density. All factors remaining the same clear water scour is found to be about

100/0 more than scour in sediment transporting

flows. Further, whereas in clear water flow it takes

several hours to reach the maximum scour below

river bed d sc ' in sediment transporting flow

corresponding equilibrium scour depth dse is

reached in relatively shorter time.

(b) Effect of Change in Depth of Flow:

2

Experim~nts by MelVille and Sutherland have

shown that when (depth of flow/pier width) ratio

i.e., Dib is greater than 2.6, scour depth does not

depend on the depth of flow; for smaller depths,

the scour depth depends on the depth of flow.

(c) Effect of Shape of Pier Nose: The shape of

the pier nose aff~cts the strength of horse-shoe

vortex as well as the separation of the flow around

scour depth. The following Table I prepared on the

basis of studies by Laursen and Toch 3, Chabert and

Engeldinger4 , Garde 5 , and Paintal and Garde 6 ,

gives relative effect of pier-nose shape on the

maximum scour if for cylindrical pier the

maximum scour is taken as unity.

Table I

A verage values ofshape coefficients K s

Shape

Cylindrical

1.0

Rectangular (//b=2 to 6)

1.1 to 1.25

0.93,0.79,0.70

1.0,0.86

1.0,0.80

0.45

60 apex angle

0.75

90 apex angle

0.88

0.94

1.00

Scour Depth: When the axis of the pier makes an

angle e with the general direction of the flow, two

major changes take place in the flow field. Except

in the case of cylindrical pier, the separation

pattern is drastically changed resulting in change

in vortices. Secondly, the open width between the

piers, perpendicular to the flow direction reduces

as the angle of inclination e increases.

571

transporting flow d se-r 07 Here d se and d K are the

scour depths below general bed level for sediment

Scour at an angle of inclination ()

transporting

and clear water flows.

Scour when the flow is axial

The effect of size distribution of the bed

material on the scour depth is more significant.

dep~nds on pier shape and () and increases as

When

the standard deviation crg of the bed material

shown in Table II.

is

large

and the bed material contains some

For rectangular piers K a will be function of ()

and lib. Curves between these parameters are "given nonmoving sizes for a given discharge, the coarser

material would tend to accumulate in the scour

by Laursen 7

hole and inhibit further development of scour

Table II

depth. Hence for the same median size, scour

depth will be smaller for material with larger

Effect oj () on Kt)Jor rectangular pier (/lb=6.0)

geometric standard deviation crg Here

7.5 0

crg= 1/2(ds/dso-t:dscld'6)

1.0

1.17

1.37

2.37

3.77

opening ratio a is defined as a=(B-b)/B where B. is

centre to centre spacing of the piers and b is the

pier width. When b is very small compared to B, a

affect that around the other. However, as a

decreases, the interference effect becomes more

pronounced and scour depth increases; in such a

case DsJD or Dsc!d-a-o. Here Dse and DK are scour

depths below the water surface for sediment

transporting and clear water flows respectively.

The analysis of extensive data collected by Garde

et aI. 21 indicate that n=0.30.

(j) Effect ofBed Material Characteristics: In the

case of noncohesive materials, the characteristics

of the bed material that affect the scour depth are

sediment density, median size d of the bed

material, its standard deviation and stratification.

For all practical purposes the density of natural

sediments can be taken as 2.65, a constant value.

As regards the sediment size, Lacey-Inglis

approach (see below) suggests that D se-a- l /6 Since

the average shear stress on the bed (=yf DS) at

which bed material moves-known as the critical

shear stress-increases as the sediment size

increases, it stands to reason that scour depth

should be affected by the size of the bed material.

Hence, for given flow condition, larger than the

sediment size d, smaller should be the scour depth.

The clear water scour depth should decrease with

increase in sediment size. Analysis of data over

large range of sediment size by Kothyari 8 has

and 16% material is finer than d 84 , d so and d 16 sizes

respectively. The percentages 84 and 16 are

such that for normal or Gaussian distribution

d s4=(dso+standard deviation) and (d 16 = dso-standard

deviation). If the correction factor K a is defined as

Equilibrium scour depth for non K =

(j

uniform material

.

Equilibrium scour depth for uniform

material of the same median size

following table is given.

(g) Stratification: Ettema lO and Kothyari s have

studied the effect of stratification of the bed

material on scour depth in case of clear water

scour. It is concluded that the stratification, in

which a relatively thin coarse top layer covers a

thick fine bottom layer, is the critical condition.

Once the top coarse layer is scoured away, scour

depth will rapidly increase.

(h) Effect ofFlow Parameters: Based on certain

theoretical analysis, physical reasoning and

analysis of experimental data, investigators have

arrived at the basic flow parameters to which the

dimensionless scour depth is related. Thus

Breusers et al.'\ Laursen and Toch 12 , Larras l3 and

Ettema 10 consider biD as the important 'parameter

and hence they related dsJD to biD. Thus

according to Breusers et al. II

dsJD= l.4(bID)

... (2)

572

Table III

Variation a/KG with

O"g

Cf g

1.0

1.5

2.0

2.40

2.75

3.3

7.8

Ka

1.0

0.90

0.75

0.50

0.38

0.25

0.160

0.08

Lacey and Inglis J4 compute Lacey's depth D LQ

for flood discharge Q as

D LQ=0.47(Q/j) 1/3

(3)

in metric units and relate scour depth below water

surface Dse to D LQ as

... (4)

Lacey-Inglis Equation

In the earlier part of this century Lacey analysed

the data from stable irrigation canals flowing

through loose noncohesive sandy material in IndoGangetic plain and obtained the following

equations for depth (or hydraulic radius) D LQ and

perimeter (or width) P .

D LQ=0.47(QIj) 1/3

... (3)

by eq. 9 (see below). On the other hand, Garde 5,

P=4.7S{Q,

... (8)

Shen et al. 15, Venkatadri et al. 16 , Coleman 17, and

Jain 18 show the importance of Froude number

3

Fr= V/

where V is the average velocity of where Q is the discharge in m / S, D LQ and P are in

m and f is Lacey's silt factor related to median size

flow. Then dsjD is related as

of the bed material d by the equation

vfD.

.. , (5)

f=1.76Wl,

where K is the constant: Typical equation of this

category is U.S. Army Engineers' equation

'" (6)

19

Shen et al. have related .the clear water scour to

the pier Reynolds number Vb/von the assumption

that the strength of horse-shoe vortex is a function

of Vb/v. Here v is the kinematic viscosity of water.

They have proposed the following equation for

enveloping curve between d sc and Vb/v.

dsc=O.000223(Vb/v)O.619,

... (9)

data on 17 bridges in alluvial rivers in North India

inglis 14 found that the maximum scour depth belo~

water level, D se is related to computed value of D LQ

as

Dse=KDLQ ,

(10)

of 2.09. Hence according to Inglis, D se is given by

the equation

... (7)

...(4)

valid for cylindrical piers and for piers of other

shape and inclination to flow, the d se or d sc value

needs to be multiplied by K s and K e. Also these

equations are valid for nearly uniform bed

material, where armouring is not pronounced.

equation will be used for a flood discharge of

return period 50 to 100 years, even though eq. (3)

is at best valid for bankful discharge. In the light of

the variables affecting scour depth mentioned

above, it will be clear that K in eq. (10) should

Recent Equations for Prediction of

depend on pier shape, sediment size, obliquity of

Scour Depth

flow etc~ Since these factors are not explicitly

Below are briefly discussed Lacey-Inglis approach taken into account, Lacey-Inglis method should not

commonly used in India and a few recently be used outside the range of data on which it is

developed equations.

based.

573

The equation proposed by Laursen and Toch l2

for prediction of d~ is

below water surface.

Based on the extensive laboratory data collected

ds/D=1.35(bID)o.70,

... (11) using uniform and nonuniform' sediments,

stratification and steady flows, Kothyari et al. 821

Melville and Sutherland's Equation

2

Melville and Sutherland have proposed a have proposed equations for determining clear

method for estimating the scoUr at bridge piers. water scour depth dsc and equilibrium scour depth

The method is completely based on the analysis of d se for steady flows. The analysis was done using

the laboratory data. Basically they assumed that the mathematical model based on the assumption

the largest possible scour depth around the bridge of formation of horse-shoe vortex on the upstream

side of the pier. Such a vortex increases the shear

pier is given by

stress on the bed and causes scour. Their equations

... (12)

for scour depth are

reduced by multiplying factors which depend on

whether the scour is clear water scour, depth is

shallow and sediment is graded. The multiplying

factors are determined from the analysis of

experimental data covering a wide range of

pertinent variables.

Chi/ale's MetholfO

The method proposed by Chitale estimates the

probable maximum scour depth at the bridge pier.

Maximum scour depth at the pier d sem is computed

as

d sem=2.5 b.

... (13)

d

-l.

2 _U 2 )]0,40

(b)0.75(D)0.16[(U

_

c

a -0.30

= 0.66 _

(tiysd / PI)

... (15)

(16)

dslb=O.88(bld).67(DId)4fJU -o30

guide bunds, the average depth D 2 in the contracted

section is related to that in the uncontracted section

Dlby

(17)

sediment Y5 and water Ys' and Pf:is the mass density

of water.

It may be seen that in sediment transporting

flows, the scour depth is not dependent on

... (1) velocity. It may also be noted that the opening

ratio a affects the scour depth. When the sediment

where Bland B 2 are the unobstructed and is nonuniform, the scour depth is reduced' as

obstructed widths of the river channel. This compared to that for uniform sediment.. The

average depth D 2 in the contracted section may not reduction factor Ka is the function of the geometric

be uniform across the width because of standard deviation O'g of the bed material as shown

nonuniform flow distribution and curved entry. in Table III. Alternatively, when the sediment is

Analysis of eight bridges in Indo-Gangetic plain nonuniform, effective sediment size, deu be used in

indicated that ratios of maximum depth to the eqs 15, 16 and 17 instead of d the median size, the

average depth D 2 varied from 1.2 to 1.67. Hence, former being given by

Chitale recommends a ratio of 1.7.

deJd=O.925 O'gO.67

.'. Maxim\Ull local depth=1.70 D 2

... (18)

Hence, D sern=2.5 b+l.70 D 2

... (14)

574

Field data

To assess the relative accuracy of the above

mentioned formulae, all available field data on

scour around bridge piers were compiled and

analysed. The Indian data on scour around pfer for

17 bridges in Indo-Gangetic plain, collected by

Inglis 14, were available. In addition, data collected

by RDSO (Research Designs and Standards

Organisation22.23.24,2s), Lucknow, on railway

bridges, and some data on scour at bridge piers on

Ganga canal were also used.

Scour data for 55 bridges in USA published by

Froehilch26, six bridges in New Zealand reported

by Melville27 , and for five bridges in Canada

reported by Neil 2s have also been used. Their

summary is given in Table IV.

In passing, it may be mentioned that not enough

information is available on scour measuring

equipment, even though the principles and broad

circuitry used in imported equipments are known.

There is an urgent need to fabricate the equipment

in Indiaand make it available to user agencies.

Analysis of Field Data for Scour Depth

methods are compared in Table V.

It can thus be seen that among the four methods

tested, namely Lacy-Inglis,

Laursen-Toch,

Melville-Sutherland and Kothyari et al., the

methods by Kothyari et al. and MelvilleSutherland give results of almost the same

accuracy. These methods are also superior in that

these take into account the effect of flow depth,

velocity, pier size and shape, and the size

distribution of bed material on' scour depth.

Some comments can also be made about LaceyInglis method. The method is basically empirical

and gives scour depth below the high flood level in

the case of meandering rivers in flood plains in

sandy materials with sediment size varying from

0.2 mm to 0.4 mm. The method, though based on a

very limited data from prot0o/Pe bridges, seems to

give satisfactory results or oversafe values. It

should not be used for rivers with cohesive or

gravelly bed materials. Further, it is important that

it should be used as was recommended by Inglis

i.e., computing D LQ from eq. 3 and then finding

D se . Also, since Lacey-Inglis did not independently

account for scour due to nonuniform flow

distribution, contraction and pier geometry and

inclination, all these effects are inherent in Lacey's

scour depth.

were tested for their accuracy of prediction of

scour depth. These were Lacey-Inglis, LaursenToch, Melville-Sutherland and Kothyari et al. The

Scour in Clayey Soils

comparison between observed and predicted scour

depths were plotted for each of the four methods. When the river bed consists of clayey material

Typical graph for comparison between the different types of forces act between soil particles

observed and computed dse or d sc for Kothyari et al. which resist the dislodgement of particles that

Table IV

Summary offield data

Source

Sediment

sizedmm

Flow depth

m

U

m/s

Pier diameter

orwidth m

Scour depth

below bed

level m

RDSO

0.43+-1.6+

1.46-19.11

N.A.

2.33-5.18

2.40-16.25

Inglis

~r-0.39+

4.4-18.3

N.A.

3-11.3

7.60*-35.7*

0.18-0.21

0.88-3.00

0.35-1.0

0.68-2.4

1.20-5.87

USA

0.25-90

0.58-19.5

0.46-3.67

0.24-13.0

0.30-7.80

New Zealand

94-230

2.7-3.8

0.87-4.27

0.92-2.4

2.75-4.88

0.50

4.0-7.5

N.A.

1.50

5.30*-9.8*

Canada

r-----------------------.

10 J

575

10'

LEGEND'

0

&II

:>

.

.

If

IE

&II

In

, -

10

'0

a A

U/~

0

fPo

-,

-,

1O

U. G CANAL DATA

+ -

GANGA AT MOkAMEH

OTHER DATA OF- R 0 SO

AA"I RIVER OAT ..

iNGLIS OAT.

A -

cP

1t

NEWZE"t.ANO

A -

o -

,.

10

10

d. ( COMPUTED)

IN m

U S DATA

10

10

method .

Table V

Van der waa)'s forces ,

electric surface and other bonding mechanisms

such as hydrogen bond, and chemical cementation

between particles. Hence scour in clayey materials

is more complex and less understood than the

scour in noncohesive sandy material. Unlike in the

case of noncohesive sands, flow conditioIll at

which clayey material will erode is very difficult to

predict because it depends on the type and

percentage of clay, quality of water and time.

Some investigators have tried to relate the critical

shear or critical velocity to plasticity index, vane

shear strength and such other properties; but these

attempts are hot very successful. Some basic work

on scour in cohesive soils has been done by

Mirtskhulava293o One idea that he has introduced

is to increase the specific weight of cohesive soils

to account for increased resistance. The increase in

the specific weight over the actual specific weight

is proportional to its cohesion. He has also

indicated that when cohesive soil is detached,

aggregates of 3 to 5 mm in size come out. Hence, it

may be necessary not to use the actual

characteristic size of cohesive sediment but the

size of aggregate soil. Because of such difficulties

no rational method is available for estimation of

scour depth around bridge piers in cohesive

material. Hence further experimental work in the

laboratory is needed under controlled conditions;

in addition some field data on scour in clayey soils

need to be collected.

l

Namjoshe and Kand32 have proposed methods for

estimation of scour depth in cohesive soils, but

different methods

% of Data points falling.within given

Method

error band

30

SO

90

Lacey-Inglis

S9

85

100

Laursen-Toch

38

65

98

Melville-Sutherland

79

95

100

Kothyari et al.

86

96

100

bridges. Hence these methods need further

verification. According to Namjoshi scour depth

below general bed level ds in cohesive soils does

not exceed 1.5 b . Kand suggests use of LaceyInglis method with enhanced value of silt factor f.

f cohesive=F(1+ JC)

... (19)

angle decreases from 15 to 50 or less; here C is

the cohesion in kg/cm2

\

Gravel-bed river is that river the bed material of

which is usually characterised by relatively large

median size and large standard deviation. Hence,

the bed material consists of material ranging from

very fine to very coarse particles. It is only during

relatively large flood that all the particles in the

576

coarse particles, which cannot be moved "by the

flow, accumulate on the bed surface and form a

layer of nonmovable particles known as ~rmour

layer or paving. For low discharge there is no

sediment transport since the original material is

overlain by annour layer. The standard deviation

of the top layer is usually much smaller than that

of underlying original material. The top layer

thickness if> one to two times the largest size in the

bed material.

When the bridge pier is constructed in such a

strata and the discharge is sufficiently large, the

scour development would progress. During such

development, the coarser particles would

accumulate in the scour hole and partly inhibit

further development of the scour. Ultimately the

accumulated coarser material would stop further

scour and the scour depth obtained would be lpuch

smaller than that in uniform material of the same

d so .

The IRC-78-1979 code recommends that scour

depth in gravel-bed rivers can be estimated using

Lacey-Inglis approach involving discharge

intensity q m3Ism namely

D Lq=1.33(q21f)1/3

... (20)

and silt factor of 24. Here q is the discharge per

unit width of channel and DLq is depth of flow

calculated using q. In this connection, it may be

stated that no field data have been published to

support this contention In view of the fact that bed

material size of the gravel bed rivers varies over a

wide range. Published data of gravel bed rivers

indicate the depth relationship.

... (21)

see Hey and Heritage33 Here b varies between 0.33

and 0.49 and c.between - 0.03 and - 0.12. This is

different from Lacey's eq. (3). In addition such a

method does not take into account the effect of pier

width and its shape.

Bridge foundation are normally designed for a

flood of 50-year return period whereas the average

annual flood has a return period of 2.33 yrs. Hence,

at such a high discharge all the available sediment

sizes in the bed would move and would thus

destroy the armour layer or pavement formed

the original bed material in place without the

presence of armour layer.

The methods proposed by Kothyari et al. 8 and

Melville and Sutherland2 take into account the

effect of sediment nonuniformity and hence

annouring effect indirectly. Therefore, it is

recommended that these methods be used in place

of Lacey-Inglis method using q and /=24.

However, to study the relative accuracy of these

methods there is need to collect scour data from

gravel-bed river which are not available at present.

To intlicate the large variation in scour depth one

can see the results obtained for a hypothetical

problem solved by Garde and Kothyari 34 with the

following data:

U=2.5 mis, D=2.80 m, Diameter of circular pipe

b=2.5 m, a=almost equal to unity, 8=0, dso=45

mm, cr g=2.125

Table VI

Method

Raudkivi

Kothyari et at. 34

IRC Code

Melville and Sutherland

3.125 m

2.142m

1.520 m

4.800 m

emphasize the need for further study of scour in

gravel-bed rivers. However, it seems that since

Kothyari et al. 34 and Melville and Sutherland2

methods take sediment nonuniformity into

account, these methods be used in place of IRC78-1979 code till additional data on scour in

gravel-bed rivers are available.

Methods of Scour Control and Prevention

Since taking the bridge pier sufficiently deep into

the bed to tak-e care of anticipated maximum scour

depth and the grip length requirement is quite

expensive, some attempts have been made to

reduce the scour either by some modification of

the pier, or some addition to it, and/or by

increasing the ability of the bed to resist the scour.

These methods are briefly discussed below. It may,

however, be mentioned that, to. the authors'

knowledge only a couple of methods discussed

below have been used in prototype bridges, and

hence their feasibility from the point of view of

structural design, construction and economy need

577

tested slots in cylindrical piers (Fig. 4). With the

be used in the field with confidence.

optimum dimension and location of the slot in the

Pier Modification

pier in the direction of flow the scour ratio was

Provision of the caisson or well having the 0.85 to 0.70 and reduction in width of scour hole

diameter three times the diameter of the pier is from 0 to 25 per cent. The slot near the water

recommended by Chabert and Engeldinger'" Shen surface reduces the effective depth of flow whereas

and Schnieders, and Jones et a/. 36 While Shen and the slot near the bed causes the jet issuing

Schneiders have suggested the use of a lip, downstream. This jet deflects the downward flow

Charbert and Engeldinger suggested that the top of in front of the pier and reduces the scour. It is felt

caisson be at bll depth below the general bed that keeping such a slot in the pier may create

level. The top surface of caisson protects the bed structural problems and may endanger the safety of

from scouring action of the horse-shoe vortex and the bridge.

thus reduces scour. The caisson top should be

Thomas39 , Ettema40 , Chiew8 , and Haghighat41

between 0 and 2.4 fib, see Fig. 3 for definition of have . experimented with circular collar of

y

appropriate diameter placed around the circular

The efficiency of such a device can be pier at a certain elevation above or below the bed,

quantified by the scour ratio Sr defined as

(Fig. 5). The optimum diameter of collar is found

to be 3b while location above the bed is 0.2 D. For

Sr = scour with device

this condition the scour ratio would be 0.80, while

scour without device

for a collar of 6 b diameter this ratio would be

0.45. Visual observations have shown that the

both under otherwise identical conditions. Scour

collar of adequate diameter inhibits the growth of

ratio Sr for caisson varies from 0.30 to 0.50, see

horse-shoe vortex and prevents it from reaching

Chabert and Engeldinger4 and Jones et aJ. 36.

the bed; as a result the scour is reduced. Ettema40

studied the reduction in scour when collar was

W.S.

placed on or below the bed; such a collar would

provide nonerodible surface but will not the inhibit

growth of horse-shoe vortex.

o~

Gupta and Gangadharaiah42 experimented with

the delta-wing-like triangular plate placed just in

front of the pier as shown in Fig. 6. The two

vortices released on the two sides of the triangular

plate are in opposite direction to the horse-shoe

vortex and hence the scour around the pier is

~--3b

reduced. The devices experimented with by Levi

and Luna43 are shown in Fig. 7. These included an

obstacle, a plate of small height and a group of

Fig. 3 Pier with cassion

piles placed in front of the pier. Among the three

ttl be evaluated further before these methods can

WS

ws

,-

DELTA WING

LIKE PLATE

Ys

/.

~/

Fig. 4 Slot in piers

~/

Fig. 5 Pier collar

plate -

578

and tiD 0.30 to 0.40 seems to be a better device.

For such case the scour ratio was 0.30. Vittal

eta/. 44 have replaced the solid cylindrical pier of

diameter b by a group of three small piers of

diameter 0.302 b each, and placed at an angular

spacing of 1200 This was found to be effective in

reducing the scour. The scour ratio obtained was

0.60 (Fig. 8). They also tested the scour reducing

>-

~r<----;-->

~s,

W.S

---

- -.......... ----+-

PIER fCOLLAR

-..,

.--....---....,,

+-I

,/1

Riprap Protection

Protecting the river bed and banks prone to

erosion by large size nonmovable stones (called

riprap) is an age old practice. Riprap blanket being

flexible, is not weakened by slight movement or

lowering of the bed. If 'to is the average shear stress

on the bed in Nlm 2 , the size of nonmovable stone

around the pier is given by 'tj120 m. If such stones

are placed on finer bed material, the fine material

underneath may get washed. For this reason proper

gradation of armour layer is needed. Otherwise a

filter needs to be provided underneath the riprap.

Limited experience about riprap protection

underlain by properly designed filter has indicated

that it is rather difficult to place relatively thin

layers of filter under deep water which is flowing.

Hence, efforts have been made to provide riprap

Protection without filters. This has been done by

47

.

Worman47 According to Worman a geometnc

standard deviation of 2 can be assumed for riprap

and d.IS can be determined. The thickness of riprap

T at the scour hole is given by

is such a size of river bed material that 85 per cent

of the material is finer than this size, and daiS is

such a size of armour layer that 15 per cent

material is finer than this size. Worman has stated

d585'Id115 should be less than or equal to (j.l

. O.

Twenty bridges in Sweden have been prOVIded

with riprap protection according to the above

method and according to Worman no significant

scour is reported. With this design criteria, no filter

i needed underneath the armour layer.

0'302 b

Concluding Remarks

Fig. 8 Pier group tested by He

analysis of ,prototype scour data around bridge

579

During the past four or five decades a number of

equations have been developed' for predicting the

scour depth. Many of these are based on limited

laboratory data and a few on the basis of limited

field data. These studies have brought out the

effect of flow conditions, pier diameter and its

shape, sediment size and its nonuniformity and the

nature of flow (clear water or sediment

transporting) on scour.

There are difficulties of getting proper

instruments for measuring transient bed level in

the scour hole and maximum scour depth in

prototype bridges. Such equipment though

available abroad is not available and used in India.

When available scour data in sandy beds are

analysed using methods of Lacey-Inglis, LaursenToch, Melville-Sutherland, and Kothyari et al., it is

found that the methods proposed by MelvilleSutherland2 and Kothyari et al. 34 give more or less

the same accuracy. Further, these two methods

take into account all the factors affecting scour

around bridge piers. Hence these are superior to

the otherlt methods. It is also concluded that LaceyIngli& method should be used for sand bed rivers in

precisely the same manner as recommended by

Inglis. This should not be used for rivers with

clayey or gravel bed. Not enough infonnation is

available on scour around bridge piers in clayey

material. The phenomenon being very complex

further laboratory studies under controlled

conditions and field studies on measurement of

scour are needed. In the case of gravel-bed rivers

the provisions of IRe code seem arbitrary. The

methods of Melville and Sutherland2 , and Kothyari

et al. 34 seem more logical for prediction of scour in

gravel-bed rivers and should be used. Yet there are

no field data available to comment on the relative'

accuracy of prediction by these methods. Hence

efforts need to be made to collect scour data in

gravel-bed rivers.

Several devices have been tested which would

reduce scour at bridge piers or inhibit its

development. These work on the following

.principles: (i) prevent formation or reduce

:effectiveness of horse-shoe vortex; (ii) develop

circulatory flow near the bed in the direction

opposite to that of horse-shoe vortex to reduce or

nullify its effect; (iii) provide device on the

there. and deposit it in the scour hole of the pier;

and (iv) provide armour layer of adequate

thickness and appropriate size distribution which

would inhibit scour.

Among the various devices, collar, vanes, and

armour layer seem promising. Field studies need to

be conducted in India to gain experience about

their usage and. cost effectiveness. Lastly, there is

an urgent need to review codal provisions for

estimation of scour, in view of available additional

information.

Notations

D

DLQ

DLQ

Dsc

Dse

f

Fr

K

K.

Ka

~

T

To

V

VI

~c

y

a

Yf Ys

, Channel width

Sediment size

Size of armour coat or riprap material

Characteristic size of bed materials; also scour

depth below bed level

Clear water scour depth below bed level

Scour depth below bed level in sediment

transporting flow

Average depth of flow

Lacey depth computed using the equation with Q

Lacey depth computed using the equation with q

D+dsc

D+dse

Froude number (=U/vgD)

Coefficient of proportionality between Dse and D LQ

Shape coefficient of pier

Coefficient to take into account effect of sediment

nonunifortnity on scour

Obliquity coefficient

Pier length

Discharge per unit width of channel

Dicharge

Channel slope

Thickness of riprap

Average shear stress on the bed

Average velocity of flow

Local maximum average velocity

Critical velocity for sediment

Shear velocity (=...JtjPr)

Difference in elevation between river bed and top

surface of caisson

Opening ratio (=(B-b)/B)

Specific weights of water and sediment

Mass density of fluid

Angle between axis of pier and the flow direction

Kinematic viscosity of the fluid

Geometric standard deviation of

sedimen~~ (ds/ds(JH-d so +d I6 )

Subscript 16, 50, 84 Sediment size such that 16, 50

or 84 per cent of material is finer than the

corresponding size.

580

ReferCDces

I

B W Melville and A J Sutherland JHE ASCE 114(10)

(1988) 1210

3 E M Laursen and A Toch 5th Congr IAHR Minneapolis

USA (1953) 123

4 J Chabert and P Engeldinger Lab Nat d'Hydraulique

Chatour France (1956)

5 R J Garde Roorlcee Univ Res J 8( 1,2) (1965) 51

6 A S Paintal and R J Garde Roorlcee Univ Research J 8 (I,

2) (1965)51

7 EM Laursen Iowa Highway Res Bd Bull 8 (1958)

8 U C Kothyari Ph D Thesis Univ Roorkee (1990)

9 A J Raudkivi 4th Inti Conf Applied Numerical Modelling

Taiwan (1984)

lOR Ettema Univ AuckJand New Zealand Rep 117 (1980)

11 H N C Breusers, G Nicollet and H W Shen J Hyd Res

IAHR 15(3)(1977) 211

12 EM Laursen and A Toch Iowa Highway Res Bd USA Bull

4 (1956)

13 J Larras Ann Ponts Chausse'es 133(4) (1963) 411

14 C C Inglis Ann Rep (Tech) CWPRS Pune (1944)

ISH W Shen, V R Schneider and S Karaki NBS US Dept

Commerce Inst Appl Technol (1966)

16 C Venkatadri, A M Rao, S T Hussain and K C Asthana

J Irrig Power CBIP (1965) 3S

17 N L Coleman 15th Cong IAHR Paris France 3 (1971) 307

18 S C Jain JHDASCE 107(5) (1981) 611

19 H W Shen, V R Schneider and S Karaki JHD ASCE 95(6)

(1969) 1919

20 S V Chitale J Irrig Power CBIP 45( I) (1988) 57

21 R J Garde, K G Ranga Raju and U C Kothyari Res Rep

Civil Engg Dept Univ Roorkee (1987)

22 RDSO Bridges and Floods Rep No RBF-3 Prog Rep 1

Lucknow ( 1967)

23 ROSO Bridges and Floods Rep No RBF-5 Prog Rep 2

Lucknow ( J 968)

24 RDSO Bridges und Floods Rep No RBF-I0 Prog Rep 3

Lucknow (1972)

25 ROSO Bridges and Floods Rep No RBF-17 Lucknow

(1991 )

2

27 B W Melville Sch Engng Univ AuclcJa"d New Zealand

Rep 117(1975)

28 C R Neil Proc Inst Civil Engrs Canada 30 (1965) 415

29 Ts E Mirtskhulava CWPRS Golden Jubilee Symp Pune 1

(1966) 14

30 Ts E Mirtskhulava CWPRS Golden Jubilee Symp Pune 2

(1966) 333

...

31 A G Namjoshi Proc intI Sem Bridge Struct Foundation

Bombay Document 3-V2 (1992)

32 C V Kand Bridge Engineering India IX and X (19921993)

33 R D Hey and G L Heritage Bridge Engineering India IX

and X(1992-1993)

34 R J Garde and U C Kothyari Report Submitted Indian Inst

of Bridge Engineering (1995) .

35 H W Shen and V R Schneider ASCE natn Mtg

Transportation Engineering Boston USA Paper No 1238

(1970)

36 J S Jones, R J Kilgore and M P Mistichelli JHE ASCE

118(2) (1992) 280

37 S Tanaka and M Yano 12th Cong IAHR Fort Collins USA

3 (1967) 193

38 Y M Chiew JHE ASCE 118(9) (1992) 1260-1269

39 Z Thomas 12th Cong IAHR Fort Collins USA 3 (1967)

125

40 R Ettema Civil Engg Dept Univ AuckJand New Zealand

Rep 216 (1980)

41 M Haghighat ME Thesis Civil Engg Dept Univ Roorkee

(1993)

42 A K Gupta and T Gangadharaiah 8th Cong APD-IAHR

Pune 2 (1992) 471

43 E Levi, and H Luna 9th Cong IAHR Dubrovnik (1961)

1061

44 N Vittal, U C Kothyari and M Haghighat JHE ASCE

120(11) (1994)

45 C Paice and R D Hey JHE USA (1993) l06r

46 J Odgaard and Y WangJHE USA (1987) 523

47 A WormanJHEASCE 115(12) (1989) 1615

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