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Lecture 4

GG281 Week 4.docx

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Wilfrid Laurier University
Michael English

Atmosphere and Hydrology Week 4, Lecture 1 (Week 3, no lectures) Stream Gauging and Dilution Techniques Objective: measure the dilution that occurs to a known concentration of substance (in our example salt) added to a river system 1. Highly soluble in water at stream temperatures 2. Stable in the presence of light, sediment or other substances present in natural waters 3. Easily detected at low concentrations 4. Not normally present in the stream 5. Non-toxic to stream biota and no impact on water quality (so we don’t kill the critters)Two Types of dilution: Slug Slug Injection Method The tracer is added to the stream as one unit or in one ‘slug’. The cloud of tracer mixes with the stream and moves towards the sample point in the stream. The discharge is calculated by determine the total area under the curve related to changes in the quantity of NaCl that is detected… from baseflow (pre NaCl spike) to baseflow (post NaCl spike) Key points looked at when sampling with a tracer slug: 1. Concentration of the tracer slug (mg/L) 2. Concentration of the tracer in the stream before addition 3. Concentration of the tracer in the stream downstream 4. Volume of the tracer slug entering creek (L) 5. Time (seconds)  An equation can be created with the variables listed above (concentration of slug, stream prior to addition, stream downstream, v
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