Scott A. Wells

Date of Award

Winter 1-26-2014

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.) in Civil & Environmental Engineering


Civil and Environmental Engineering

Physical Description

1 online resource (xxxiii, 295 pages)


Hydrodynamics -- Mathematical models -- Case studies, Water quality -- Mathematical models, Water temperature -- Mathematical models




CE-QUAL-W2 is a 2-D hydrodynamic and water quality model that has been applied to reservoirs, lakes, river systems, and estuaries throughout the world. However, when this model is applied for shallow systems, this model requires a long calculation time to maintain numerical stability, compared to applications of reservoirs or deeper river systems.

To solve this problem, a new hydrodynamic and temperature model was built based on the framework of CE-QUAL-W2 but that allows for steady-state hydrodynamic computations. By calculating the hydrodynamics at steady-state, the time step for stability is relaxed and simulations can proceed at much higher time steps. The rest of the model framework is still used for water quality state variables, in this case, temperature. The algorithm used for computing the water surface elevation is Manning's equation.

This thesis study is one part of the Willamette Water 2100 project (Santelmann et al., 2012), which examines hydrological, ecological, and human factors affecting water scarcity in the Willamette River Basin. This study included three stages: (1) Convert six existing CE-QUAL-W2 V3.1 models into a newer version: CE-QUAL-W2 V3.7. (2) Develop the steady-state model code in FORTRAN. (3) Test the steady-state model on three river systems in the Willamette River Basin at Year 2001 and 2002.

The result proved that the steady-state model could reduce the computing time by 90% for river applications, while predicting dynamic river temperature with high accuracy at a two-minute time scale. This new model will be employed to simulate the future of the Willamette River System at a decadal or centennial timescales, addressing river temperature concerns and fish habitat issues.

Persistent Identifier