The Civil Engineering Water Resources Laboratory (CEWRL) is amongst the largest facilities of its type in Canada, with a floor area of 421 m2.

The laboratory services both undergraduate teaching and graduate research purposes, and is maintained by a designated technical officer. The water supply system comprises a 468 m3 storage tank, one 0.3 m3/s low-head pump and one 0.1 m3/s high-head pump. Facilities used for research include three flumes (large 1.5m wide x 1.0m high x 30m long channel (figure 2); 0.4m wide x 0.65m high x 7.6m long adjustable slope flume (figure 1a); 1.0 m wide x 0.9 m high x 18 m long sediment recirculating channel bend flume (figure 1a and 1b)). A large reservoir (2m wide x 0.6m high x 4.5m long) is also available for physical modeling of dam breaks (figure 3d).

The CEWRL is equipped with sophisticated lab and field measurement instrumentation, including but not limited to:

  • three acoustic Doppler velocimeters (ADVs),
  • three acoustic Doppler current profilers (aDcps) ,
  • electromagnetic current meter,
  • Conductivity-Temperature-Depth probe with add-on turbiditimeter and fluorometer,
  • acoustic Shallow Water Ice Profiler,
  • Real-Time-Kinematic GPS,
  • Total Station,
  • laser altimeter,
  • portable ultrasonic pipe flow meter,
  • two weather stations,
  • various propeller current meters,
  • sediment sampling equipment
  • PIV-Tomographic Particle Image Velocimetry
  • Aquariums for mixing studies (large and small rectangular aquarium, square based aquarium)

Bent Flume

bent flume

The Bent FLume and Nortek Vectrino + Acoustic Doppler Velocimeters (ADVs) are used to measure three-dimensional velocities in complex flows at turbulent scales (sampling frequency of up to 200 Hz)

The photos below show

- Sontek M9 ADCP and RTK-GPS

- M9 deployed on braided Rees River, New Zealand

- RDI 1200kHz Rio Grande ADCP and RTKGPS deployed on Fraser River, British Columbia

  - Seabird SBE19plusV2 Conductivity-Temperature-Depth (CTD) probe, deployed on North Saskatchewan River

Sloped flume

sloped flume

Sontek M9 ADCP and RTK-GPS

Sontek M9 ADCP and RTK-GPS

RDI 1200kHz Rio Grande ADCP and RTKGPS

RDI Rio Grande ADCP and RTKGPS

Coming soon

The laboratory will soon be equipped with an advanced instrument called PIV (Tomographic Particle Image Velocimetry).

Particle Image Velocimetry is a technique to measure the velocity field in different types of flows. Three dimensional velocity field measurements with three components is done by Tomographic-PIV.

This system uses a focused laser light source, a high-resolution digital camera, timing unit, and sophisticated algorithms (cross correlation method, least square matching) to record the particle movements (figure 5).

This technology makes it possible to measure accurately velocity in complex flow situations. Flowing fluid should contain seeding particles within the area under investigation.

Very high quality images are generated using four scientific CMOS cameras and either volumetric or planar laser illumination. These Images are used to reconstruct the particles in the system and then image processing methods determine the particle motion, and hence the flow velocity, from the video recordings.

Nortek Vectrino

Nortek Vectrino

Wide flume with ADVs

wide flume

Large reservoir

Large reservoir



Seabird SBE19plusV2 conductivity-temp-depth probe

Seabird SBE19plusV2 Conductivity-Temperature-Depth (CTD) probe



Typical results of the Tomographic-PIV

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