High fluid shear strain causes injury in silver shark: Preliminary implications for Mekong hydropower turbine design

Lee J. Baumgartner, Garry Thorncraft, Oudom Phonekhampheng, Craig Boys, Anna Navarro Cuenca, Wayne Robinson, R. Brown, Z.D. Deng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The Lower Mekong Basin is facing unprecedented threats to fish diversity from hydropower development. There is increasing pressure on developers and construction authorities to design solutions to improve fish survival through turbines, thus protecting the resources in regions being developed for hydropower. A hydraulic characteristic of hydropower turbines with known fisheries impacts is fluid shear stress. Elevated shear stress occurs where rapidly flowing water passes near spillways, screens and within turbine draft tubes. Shear stress can have adverse impacts on fish, but no work has assessed whether this holds true for Mekong River species. A flume was used to determine critical tolerances of silver shark, Balantiocheilos melanopterus (Bleeker), to shear stress rates at a high‐velocity jet which simulated a hydropower turbine. Fish were assessed for injury or mortality following exposure. Results were compared against a no‐shear control. Injury and mortality were greater at higher shear stress exposures. Injuries occurred at all shear exposure levels with mortality at shear levels higher than 600/s. This approach should help design future hydropower turbines if data on other species demonstrate similar results. If the likelihood of adverse impact is high, then shear stress will need to be considered in the design of future hydropower facilities.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)193-198
Number of pages6
JournalFisheries Management and Ecology
Volume24
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017

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turbines
water power
shear strain
shark
sharks
silver
turbine
shear stress
fluid
fish
mortality
spillway
Mekong River
fluids
tolerance
fishery
hydraulics
fluid mechanics
fisheries
basins

Cite this

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title = "High fluid shear strain causes injury in silver shark: Preliminary implications for Mekong hydropower turbine design",
abstract = "The Lower Mekong Basin is facing unprecedented threats to fish diversity from hydropower development. There is increasing pressure on developers and construction authorities to design solutions to improve fish survival through turbines, thus protecting the resources in regions being developed for hydropower. A hydraulic characteristic of hydropower turbines with known fisheries impacts is fluid shear stress. Elevated shear stress occurs where rapidly flowing water passes near spillways, screens and within turbine draft tubes. Shear stress can have adverse impacts on fish, but no work has assessed whether this holds true for Mekong River species. A flume was used to determine critical tolerances of silver shark, Balantiocheilos melanopterus (Bleeker), to shear stress rates at a high‐velocity jet which simulated a hydropower turbine. Fish were assessed for injury or mortality following exposure. Results were compared against a no‐shear control. Injury and mortality were greater at higher shear stress exposures. Injuries occurred at all shear exposure levels with mortality at shear levels higher than 600/s. This approach should help design future hydropower turbines if data on other species demonstrate similar results. If the likelihood of adverse impact is high, then shear stress will need to be considered in the design of future hydropower facilities.",
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High fluid shear strain causes injury in silver shark : Preliminary implications for Mekong hydropower turbine design. / Baumgartner, Lee J.; Thorncraft, Garry; Phonekhampheng, Oudom; Boys, Craig; Navarro Cuenca, Anna; Robinson, Wayne; Brown, R.; Deng, Z.D.

In: Fisheries Management and Ecology, Vol. 24, No. 3, 2017, p. 193-198.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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T2 - Preliminary implications for Mekong hydropower turbine design

AU - Baumgartner, Lee J.

AU - Thorncraft, Garry

AU - Phonekhampheng, Oudom

AU - Boys, Craig

AU - Navarro Cuenca, Anna

AU - Robinson, Wayne

AU - Brown, R.

AU - Deng, Z.D.

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