Canal hydraulic models can be used to understand the hydraulic behaviour of large
and complex irrigation networks at low cost. A number of computational hydraulic
models were developed and tested in the early 1970s and late 80s. Most were developed
using finite difference schemes and procedural programming languages. In spite of
the importance of these models, little progress was made on improving the numerical
algorithms behind them. Software development efforts were focused more on developing
the user interface rather than the core algorithm.
This research develops a database-driven, object-oriented hydraulic simulation model
for canal irrigation networks using modern high-resolution shock capturing techniques
that are capable of handling variety of flow situations which includes trans-critical flow,
shock propagation, flows through gated structures and channel networks. The technology
platforms were carefully selected by taking into account a multi-user support and
possible migration of the new software to a web-based one which integrates a Java-based
object-oriented model with a relational database management system that is used to
store network configuration and simulation parameters.
The developed software is tested using a benchmark test suite formulated jointly by
the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) and the Environment
Agency (EA). A total of eight tests (seven of them adapted from the DEFRAjEA
benchmark suite) were run and results compiled. The developed software has outperformed
ISIS, REC-RAS and MIKE 11 in three of the benchmark tests and equally well
for the other four. The outcome of this research is therefore a new category in hydraulic
simulation software that uses modern shock-capturing methods fully integrated with a
configurational relational database that has been fully evaluated and tested.
A Doctoral Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of Doctor of Philosophy of Loughborough University.