Course syllabus

Strömning i naturliga vatten
Environmental Hydraulics

VVR176, 7,5 credits, A (Second Cycle)

Valid for: 2015/16
Decided by: Education Board C
Date of Decision: 2015-04-15

General Information

Main field: Water Resources Engineering.
Elective for: MWLU2, V5-vr, W5-vr
Language of instruction: The course will be given in English


The objective of the course is to provide a fundamental understanding of the phenomena and processes that govern the water flow in the environment with the special purpose of providing the students with knowledge to analyze the conditions for and consequences of human activities. Activities refer primarily to discharge of pollutants to different water bodies, but the interaction between structures and water flow is also discussed. A brief overview of basic sediment transport is included as well.

Learning outcomes

Knowledge and understanding
For a passing grade the student must

Competences and skills
For a passing grade the student must

Judgement and approach
For a passing grade the student must


An overview of water flow in the environment – phenomena and processes related to such flow. Transport processes and spreading of pollutant. Balance equations for water and pollutants in surface water systems with instantaneous mixing. Piston flow and nominal retention time. Basic mechanisms for mixing such as diffusion (laminar and turbulent), dispersion, and advection. The general transport (advection-diffusion) equation – formulation and special cases. Mixing in rivers, lakes, and coastal areas. Jets and plumes (free shear flows). Near- and far field mixing. Diffusers and other technical solutions for pollution discharge. Field measurement techniques. Case studies concerning pollution discharge and environmental impact. Density-driven flows including stratification and horizontal spreading of pollutants. Temperature and oxygen conditions in natural waters together with governing equations. Interaction between structures and water flow. Basic sediment transport and boundary layer theory. Bed load and suspended load. Some commonly used sediment transport formulas.

Examination details

Grading scale: TH
Assessment: Written examination and home assignments.


Required prior knowledge: VVR145 (VVR120) or corresponding course in basic hydraulics/fluid mechanics.
The number of participants is limited to: No

Reading list

Contact and other information

Course coordinator: Professor Magnus Larson,
Course homepage: