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Local scour patterns around a bridge pier with cable-wrapping

Muhawenimana, Valentine ORCID:, Foad, Nadine, Ouro Barba, Pablo ORCID: and Wilson, Catherine ORCID: 2022. Local scour patterns around a bridge pier with cable-wrapping. Fluids 8 (1) , 3. 10.3390/fluids8010003

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The performance of cable flow-altering bed scour countermeasures was experimentally evaluated based on the scour reduction, bed morphology, and the effects on the flow field. An unprotected 40 mm diameter pier was compared to piers protected with spiral cables (2, 4, 6, 8 and 10 mm diameters) wrapped at a 15-degree angle for two-bed sediment sizes with median grain sizes of 0.86 and 1.83 mm, for a cylinder Reynolds number of 7120. The scour depth was reduced by the cables by up to 52 percent compared to the unprotected pier case, a reduction that increased with increasing cable diameter for both sediment beds. Scour depth and sediment deposition varied by sediment size, where the scour hole was up to 45 percent deeper for the finer sediment bed than that of the coarser bed. Velocity and turbulence statistics showed that cables attenuated the flow within the scour hole by diminishing the downflow and horseshoe vortex, whereas in the case of finer sediment, spatially averaged turbulent kinetic energy and Reynolds shear stresses were respectively up to 1.4 and 1.8 times higher for the unprotected pier than the protected pier, resulting in scour depth reduction. The presence of the cable also reduced the vortex shedding frequency in the pier wake as indicated by a Strouhal number of around 0.175. The results demonstrate the potential of cable threading as a flow-altering scour countermeasure to reduce bridge pier scour.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Published Online
Status: Published
Schools: Engineering
Additional Information: License information from Publisher: LICENSE 1: URL:, Type: open-access
Publisher: MDPI
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 6 January 2023
Date of Acceptance: 18 December 2022
Last Modified: 09 Jul 2023 18:34

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