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Using numerical models and acoustic methods to predict reservoir sedimentation
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This study draws on drainage basin hydrography, numerical modeling and geographic information system (GIS) techniques in concert with dual frequency echo sounder data to estimate sediment thickness when initial surveys are unavailable or inaccurate. Tahtali Reservoir (Turkey), which provides 40% of water supply to the city of Izmir, was selected as the study site. Deposition patterns within the whole lake were estimated with a 3-D hydrodynamic and sediment transport model applied to Tahtali Reservoir. The numerical model simulated lake response to wind forcing and inflows and/or outflows and was used to describe sediment deposition patterns resulting from the erosion of soils quantified by the implementation of Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE) to the whole watershed. Surveying of the lake via dual frequency (28/200 kHz) echo sounder system revealed the current bathymetry, and sediment thickness was estimated from the difference of depths measured by the dual frequency sounder along surveyed transects. These results were compared to the modeled sedimentation thicknesses and to preliminary estimates of watershed sediment yield estimated by USLE. Results of this study can be used for further water quality studies and for long term management plans.