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Hydrology Method

INTRODUCTION
Urban storm water hydrology is not an exact science. While the hydrologic processes are wellunderstood, the necessary equations and boundary conditions required to solve them are often quite complex. In addition, the required data is often not available. In the hydrologic analysis of a development site, there are a number of variable factors that affect the nature of storm water runoff from the site. Some of the factors that must be considered include: The following subsections describe the advantages and limitations inherit with some of the subbasin hydrology methods provided. When these hydrology methods are used for design calculations, it is important to understand the assumptions and limitations before a particular method is selected.

Rational Method
The Rational Method is recommended for small, highly-impervious drainage areas, such as parking lots and roadways draining into inlets and gutters. The American Society of Civil Engineers Water Environment Fe deration, Design and Construction of Urban Storm water Management Systems, 1992 edition, states Rainfall amount and storm distribution Drainage area size, shape, and orientation Ground cover and soil type Slopes of terrain and stream channel(s) Antecedent moisture condition Storage potential (floodplains, ponds, wetlands, reservoirs, channels, etc.) Watershed development potential Characteristics of the local drainage system

The following subsections describe the advantages and limitations inherit with some of the subbasin hydrology methods provided. When these hydrology methods are used for design calculations, it is important to understand the assumptions and limitations before a particular method is selected.

Rational Method
The Rational Method is recommended for small, highly-impervious drainage areas, such as parking lots and roadways draining into inlets and gutters. The American Society of Civil Engineers Water Environment Fe deration, Design and Construction of Urban Storm water Management Systems, 1992 edition, states that the Rational Method is not recommended for drainage areas much larger than 100-200 acres. Can be used for estimating peak flows and the design of small site or subdivision storm sewer systems. Planning level calculations up to 160 acres.

Detailed final design fo r peak runoff calculations of smaller homogeneous drainage areas of up to 60 acres. Relatively uniform basins in land use and topography. These basins should be broken down in to subbasins of like uniformity and routing methods applied to determine peak runoff at specified points. The averaging of the significantly different land uses through the runoff coefficient of the Rational Method should be minimized where possible. For basins that have multiple changes in land use and topography, the design storm runoff should be analyzed by other methods. Should not be used for st orage volume design (i.e., detention pond sizing, etc.).

Modified Rational Method


The Modified Rational Method is a variation of the Rational Method, developed mainly for the sizing of detention facilities in urban areas. The above limitations of the Rational Method apply, except that the Modified Rational Method may be used for storage volume design. The Modified Rational Method is applied similarly to the Rational Method except that it utilizes a fixed rainfall duration. The selected rainfall duration depends on the specified requirements. For example, you might perform an iterative calculation to determine the rainfall duration which produces the maximum storage volume requirement when sizing a detention basin.

SCS TR-55 Method


The NRCS (SCS) Urban Hydrology for Small Watersheds TR-55 Method has wide application for existing and developing urban watersheds up to 2,000 acres. The SCS TR-55 Method requires data similar to the Rational Method: drainage area, a runoff factor, time of concentration and rainfall. However, the SCS TR-55 method is more sophisticated in that it also considers the time distribution of the rainfall, the initial rainfall losses to interception and depression storage and an infiltration rate that decreases during the course of a storm. Can be used for drainage areas up to 2,000 acres. For areas larger than 2,000 acres, the SCS TR-20 hydrology method can be used. If using rain gages to assign a storm precipitation to the model, only one rain gage can be assigned to a either a SCS TR-55 or SCS TR-20 hydrology method model.

TIME OF CONCENTRATION METHODS


The following Tc methods are supported: Carter Eagleson FAA Harris County, TX Kinematic Wave (EPA SWMM only) Kirpich Papadakis-Kazan (Maricopa & Pima Counties, AZ) SCS TR-55 User-defined

FAA (Federal Aviation Agency) Equation


Where:

Tc = Time of Concentration(min) C = Runoff Coefficient L = Flow Length (m) S = Slope (%)

Carter Equation

Where:

Tc = Time of Concentration (hrs) L = Flow Length (km) S = Slope (m/km)

Harris County, TX Equation


Where:

Tc = Time of Concentration (min) A = Subbasin Area (acres)

Kirpich Equation
Tc = (0.01947 * ((L^0.77) * (S^-0.385)))

Where:

Tc = Time of Concentration (min) L = Flow Length (m) S = Slope (m/m)