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A seepage meter designed for use in flowing water

January 1, 2008

Seepage meters provide one of the most direct means to measure exchange of water across the sediment-water interface, but they generally have been unsuitable for use in fluvial settings. Although the seepage bag can be placed inside a rigid container to minimize velocity head concerns, the seepage cylinder installed in the sediment bed projects into and disrupts the flow field, altering both the local-scale fluid exchange as well as measurement of that exchange. A low-profile seepage meter designed for use in moving water was tested in a seepage meter flux tank where both current velocity and seepage velocity could be controlled. The conical seepage cylinder protrudes only slightly above the sediment bed and is connected via tubing to a seepage bag or flowmeter positioned inside a rigid shelter that is located nearby where current velocity is much slower. Laboratory and field tests indicate that the net effect of the small protrusion of the seepage cylinder into the surface water flow field is inconsequentially small for surface water currents up to 65 cm s-1. Current velocity affects the variability of seepage measurements; seepage standard deviation increased from ???2 to ???6 cm d-1 as current velocity increased from 9 to 65 cm s-1. Substantial bias can result if the shelter is not placed to minimize hydraulic gradient between the bag and the seepage cylinder.

Publication Year 2008
Title A seepage meter designed for use in flowing water
DOI 10.1016/j.jhydrol.2008.06.029
Authors D. O. Rosenberry
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Journal of Hydrology
Index ID 70000098
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse