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Hydraulics Laboratory PDF Print E-mail

The Hydraulics Laboratory has been one of the most important JCI segments since its founding. Research at this laboratory played an important role in JCI’s development and recognition. The laboratory has conducted extensive research associated with major hydraulic and hydropower engineering projects both in the country and abroad.  

JCI’s Hydraulics Laboratory is located in a large hall and covers a surface area of some 3,500m2. It is equipped with water supply infrastructures and instruments for analyzing pressurized and free flow. All types of measurements at all basic hydraulic structures can be assessed here, including canals, spillways, weirs, pressure pipes, and the like. The laboratory is also equipped for model tests of hydraulic structures, water courses, marine facilities, ports, industrial facilities, etc.  Basic installations in the laboratory consist of a large glass channel, a wave channel, a current-meter channel, and two tanks.

The laboratory's key function in the past has been research and measurement using physical models. Most of the models were built to analyze dams – more than 50 dams in Serbia and the countries of the former Yugoslavia, and more than 20 dams abroad. Analyses using physical models have included spillways, turbine intakes, diversion tunnels, navigation locks, weirs, gates, and the like. Much of the modeling and testing was performed in the areas of riverine and marine hydraulics. Riverine hydraulics included analyses of sediment transport and erosion of the channels of natural streams. Additionally, modeling has encompassed various river facilities – water intakes, weirs, outlets, training structures, and the like. Marine hydraulics included model tests of breakwaters, seawalls, and similar structures. Examples of recent model tests are listed below.

Hydraulic Model Tests of Beška Bridge Piers on the Danube

Following the construction of the first bridge on the Danube River near Beška, significant erosion of the river channel was noted at the base of the piers, which threatened the stability of the piers. A new bridge is currently being built in close proximity to the existing bridge, and the location of its pier supports dramatically alters hydraulic conditions, which in turn drive local erosion. For this reason, the building contractors, prior to beginning work on this project, decided to evaluate their design concept using a physical model.  

A partial 1:40-scale hydraulic model was constructed at JCI's Hydraulics Laboratory, with the goal of determining the degree of erosion which would occur around the piers of the new bridge and assessing the effect of the piers of the new bridge on erosion around the piers of the old bridge. Based on model test outcomes, temporary and permanent measures were recommended to protect the piers from erosion, and the building technology was modified accordingly.

Figure 1. Bridge pier model.

Hydraulic Model Tests of the Inlet Structure of a Sewer Running from the Belgrade Ambulance Service to Venizelos Street

This project involved the re-direction of wastewater evacuated by the old Mokri Lug sewer directly into the Sava River, to the Veliko Selo Wastewater Treatment Plant which discharges into the Danube. There is a special control structure with an overflow threshold at the upstream end and a check weir at the downstream end of the new sewer.
Hydraulic conditions are highly complex due to the specific nature of the structure, and required a physical hydraulic model for accurate analyses and sizing. The main objectives of the model tests were to determine the height of the overflow threshold and the characteristics of the weir which would result in the most favorable conditions for incoming flow rates. Analyses were conducted using a model scale of 1:10 (Froude similitude).  
Following the completion of model tests, a solution was recommended which included specific corrections to be made to the layout of the preliminary design, and which were followed in the detailed design. The check weir at the downstream end was also tested to verify the recommended solution.  Based on established correlations between specific physical parameters, weir control procedures for various inflow scenarios can now be defined.



Figure 2. Physical model of an intake structure.

In addition to testing, the Hydraulics Laboratory conducts measurements at completed hydraulic structures. During 2008 and 2009, these activities largely focused on flow measurements at various hydraulic systems, applying the following methods:
  • Direct method, using a doppler ultrasonic flow meter
  • Direct method, using a transit-time ultrasonic flow meter
  • Indirect method, using current meters
  • Volumetric method
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Figure 3. Ultrasonic flow meters: Nivus PCM and KROHNE UFM 610 Р.

Raw-Water Transport System Flow Measurements at the Belgrade Groundwater Source
During the fourth and fifth years of research and investigations for purposes of the study «Belgrade Groundwater Source: Status and Developmental Directions», numerous flow measurements were conducted with the goal of determining the capacity of radial wells.

Figure 4. Discharge measurements at a radial water well.


Figure 5. Discharge measurements at the Prvonek Dam outlet.

Flow Measurements within the Scope of the Prvonek Dam Trial Operation Project
Several in situ measurement campaigns were conducted at a number of checkpoints (drainage system, outlet, ecologically-sustainable flow), under varying hydrologic conditions.

Wastewater Discharge Measurements within the Scope of the Register of Polluters Project
Measurements were conducted in a large number of cities across Serbia (Gornji Milanovac, Arilje, Požega, Jagodina, Zaječar, Negotin...) to determine the volume of wastewater being discharged into various recipients.
    altFigure 6. Wastewater discharge measurements.
Smaller-Scale Hydraulic Projects
The Hydraulics Laboratory has recently assisted in the design, construction, and re-construction of numerous outdoor fountains and public taps. In 2008, a detailed design was produced and implemented for an artificial geyser in the Sava River at Šabac. The geyser is 20 m high, located in a beach area. It sprouts water from a floating structure which houses hydraulic, mechanical and electrical equipment.    
An outdoor fountain was designed and built at the Terazije Terrace in Belgrade and another re-constructed at the Fontana Shopping Center in New Belgrade. The Hydraulics Laboratory tested equipment and made various adjustments to arrive at original water patterns.  
In cooperation with Belgrade’s public water and wastewater utility, the Hydraulics Laboratory rehabilitated a large number of other fountains in Belgrade and produced as-built design documents. It also completed the rehabilitation of an ancient public tap in Košutnjak (Belgrade), which is under government protection as a cultural site of exceptional significance.
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Figure 7. Artificial geyser in Šabac.     Figure 8. Fountain in New Belgrade, central piece.


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