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Canal Falls

Canal Falls

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Published by nizamaniza

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Published by: nizamaniza on Feb 13, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Necessity of Falls/Drops
A fall or drop is an irrigation structure constructed across a canal to lower down its water level and destroy the surplus energy liberated from the falling water which may otherwisescour the bed and banks of the canal.We know that the canal requires a certain slope, depending upon the discharge, toovercome the frictional losses. This slope may vary from 1 in 4000 for a discharge of about1.5 cumecs to about 1 in 8000 for a discharge of 3000 cumecs. This slope is, therefore, quiteflat in comparison to the available ground slope of an average value of 5 to 20 cm per kilometre length (i.e., 1 in 200 to 1 in 50 ). Thus the ground slope in nature is always verymuch steeper than the design bed slope of irrigation canal; based on the silt theories: If anirrigation canal, taking off from its head, is in cutting, it will soon meet with condition whenit will be entirely in embankment.If the canal is in embankment, the cost of construction and maintenance is very highand at the same time the percolation and seepage losses are excessive. Also, there is always adanger of the adjacent area being flooded if some cut or breach takes place in the canal banks.Hence, the canal should never be in high embankment. However, the divergence between thegentle bed slope of canal and the steep ground slope throws the canal in embankment after acertain distance though it started in cutting at its head. To overcome this difficulty, falls areintroduced at appropriate places, and the water surface of the canal is lowered. Arrangementsare made to dissipate the excess energy liberated from the falling water.
Location of Falls/Drops
The location of a fall is decided from the following considerations:1.
For the canal which does not irrigate the area directly, the fall should be located fromthe considerations of economy in cost of excavation of the channel with regard to balancing depth and the cost of the falls itself.2.
For a canal irrigating the area directly a fall may be provided at a location where theF.S.L. outstrips the ground level, but before the bed of the canal comes into filling.After the drop, the F.S.L of the canal may be below the ground level for ½ to ¼kilometre.3.
The location of the fall may also be decided from the consideration of the possibilityof combining it with a regulator or a bridge or any other masonry works.4.
A relative economy of providing large number of small falls vis small number of bigfalls should be worked out. The provision of small number of big falls results inunbalanced earth-work, but there is always some saving in the cost of the fallstructure.
Development of Falls/Drops
The ancient people always tried to avoid falls by aligning canals along zig-zag route in order to increase the length of the canal and thus dissipate the excess energy head in friction. TheEastern Yamuna Canal constructed by Mughal Emperors had no falls, and the canal, followeda sinuous path. The falls were first constructed by the British in India in the nineteenthcentury. The development of falls, since then, took place gradually. Among the earlier type of falls are: Ogee falls, rapids and stepped falls. Later, notch falls, vertical falls and glacis typefalls were developed.
1. Ogee fall
The Ogee fall was first constructed by Sir Proby Cautley on the Ganga Canal. This type of fall has gradual convex andconcave curves, with an aim to provide a smooth transition andto reduce disturbance andimpact. This preserved theenergy (with out dissipating it).Due to this, the Ogee fall hadthe following defects:(i)
There was considerable draw down effect on the u/s resulting is bed erosion.(ii)
Due to smooth transition, the kinetic energy was preserved till sufficient depthwas scoured out below the fall to ensure the formation of the hydraulic jump.
2. Rapid fall
Rapid falls were provided on Western Yamuna Canal and were designed by Lieut. R.F.Croften. Such a fallconsists of a glacissloping at 1 vertical to 10to 20 horizontal. The longglacis assured theformation of hydraulic jump. The gentle slopeadmitted timber traffic. Hence, the fall worked admirably. However, there was very high costof construction.
3. Stepped fall
Stepped fall was a nextdevelopment of the rapidfall. One such type was provided at the tail, of main canal escape of Sarda canal. The cost of this fall was also too high.
4. Notch fall
Soon after the development of steppedfall, the efficiency of vertical impacton the floor for energy dissipationcame to be recognized. The verticalfall came in the field along with thecistern. However, with greater discharges, vertical fall gave trouble.Hence, these were superseded for atime by the notch fall. The trapezoidalnotch fall was first designed by Riedin 1864.The fall consists of one or more trapezoidal notches in a high crested wall. A flatcircular lip projects downstream of each notch to disperse water. The notches were designedto maintain the normal water depth in the u/s channel at any two discharge values. The depth
 3discharge relation was thus maintained with close approximation. As the channel approachedthe fall, there was neither drawdown nor heading up of water. The trapezoidal fall was verysuccessful and was adopted in India for many years. It was also copied all over the worldwhere it is still in use. There was one serious defect in these falls that they could not be usedas regulators in addition.
5. Vertical drop fall
In the vertical drop fall, the nappe impinges clear into the water cushion below. In the earlier types of vertical falls, the dimensions of cistern were put in arbitrarily in light of experienceof the designers. Another device in the form of grid wasusually used in the cisternintercepting the dropping jetof water. The grid consisted of  baulks of timber horizontal or inclined and spaced somecentimeters apart. These werelater abandoned because thetimber grid got clogged androtted and had to be replacedfrequently.The Sarda type fall developed on the Sarda canal Project in UP and CDO type falldeveloped in Punjab are some of the recent types of vertical drop falls. In these falls, the highvelocity jet enters the deep pool of water in the cistern and the dissipation of energy isaffected by the turbulent diffusion.
6. Glacis type fall
The efficiency of the hydraulic jump as a very potent means of destroying the energy of canalfalls is used in glacis falls. The glacis type of fall utilizes the standing wave phenomenon for dissipation of energy. Theglacis fall may be (i) straightglacis type, or (ii) parabolicglacis type, commonlyknown as the Montague type.The straight glacis fall may be with baffle platform and baffle wall. In such a case,the formation of jump takes place on the baffle platform. This type was first developed by Inglis and is called Inglis fall.
7. Miscellaneous Types
(i) Cylinder fall or Well fall 
: In this type of fall, water is thrown into a well over a crest fromwhere it escapes near its bottom. The energy is dissipated in the well in turbulences. They arequite suitable and economical for low discharges and high drops, and are used at tail escapesof small channels.
(ii) Chute or rapids(iii) Pipe falls

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